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All of a Sudden Photos app Dates move 30 - 50 years ahead .. into like 2070  


Topic starter

__sent this to [email protected] .. as well_

This is odd.  Running the latest build of Catalina, leveraging iCloud Photos .. with Note this .. IOS 14 the latest public beta.  

Photo library was stable, looking nice and clean and working well for like, two years — then .. all of a sudden dates are flying forward.  

The only thing I can think of is that I imported an SD card of photos from my Sony A7S.. and I think the camera date may have been off.  Note, I have imported from the A7S lots of times in the past, no issue.

Any idea whatI may have done?  Any thoughts on how to restore the dates without restoring the library?


3 Answers

The iOS 14 Beta could be an issue.

Do you have backups?

If I understand you need to fix the date metadata (EXIF data) on your photos because of something that happened, the cause of which you are unsure of correct?

Are you referring to the File date or the Exif date?

How far off are the dates by? Is the date discrepancy visible on iOS beta or on the Mac, on both devices?

It's difficult to know how to answer the question without more info, which app and device are you seeing the date change issues on? What version of are you using? Is all your software up-to-date? Were these photos taken by a camera, in which case the EXIF data should display the date the photograph was taken on or otherwise?

Could you come back with a few more details so that I can be more effective?

One thing you could try to isolate the source of the issue is to use a third party EXIF tool to inspect the EXIF data so that you can rule out whether the file metadata was damaged/skewed or if it is the app that is misinterpreting the information. So you could try this strategy to verify the findings as innate to the file or sourced from the app you are using to view the said EXIF data.

If have brew installed on your Mac you could search and install something fairly quickly. A great free tool is exiftool. Install it with brew, the enter exiftool in the terminal followed by a space and then drag and drop your photo in the terminal window and it will reveal all the metadata including EXIF data that you could ever dream of.

As a point here, exiftool actually has an option called

-globalTimeShift SHIFT           Shift all formatted date/time values

As I write this is it possible that you might have used some utility against the images that cause a time shift. If not don't worry but consider if the surprise of seeing the time go off might not be related to some previous action on your part. Something to probe if true or not otherwise ignore this remark.

You can try confirming if the exif data is ok in another tool: or Graphic Converter

Graphic Converter can read a lot of EXIF data.

Preview can display the EXIF time stamp in the More Info panel.

If you still are seeing issues, take a photo and use the newly taken photo to test against. Move the file to your Mac and if necessary use the Finder to lock the file to prevent modification and try to understand where the data fails to reflect the truth and in which environment the data is truthful.

Again, I am wondering if the date is off in iOS because the software is actually beta so unexpected behavior may indeed occur.

This post was modified 4 months ago 4 times by Alex Santos

Additional details .. the date pushes first appeared in IOS14, then the libraries on OS X machines using iCloud now have the wrong dates. I have not been able to determine a pattern, but the dates are pushed out 10 - 40 years.. some now in 2070. Dates affected are the in the EXIF metadata.

Photos where captured by a mix of old iPhones, Sony A7 cameras and other sources. To be clear .. photos that stat in the library for years .. all good .. all of a sudden had date moves. eg. photos from the 80's are now appearing with dates > 2030.

Mac OS Catalina 10.15.6, IOS 14 pubic beta

Topic starter

I do have backups.  Both TM and CCC.  I will try this.  thank you.



You should definitely use whatever app built into the iOS beta to report the issue. I reckon you are not the only one. If you have a backup consider leaving it safe and use whatever method Apple provides to report this issue so that it can be fixed and it might mean that in effect they end up fixing it for you.