I'm re reading the books and found that a newspaper article that Hermione said came out "a week ago" showed the Weasleys in Egypt after winning the Daily Prophet Grand Gallion Draw. Ron's letter makes it sound as if they have been in Egypt a few days. So....Did the Daily Phophet hold off on announcing the winners until they arrived? That seems odd.

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    A newspaper holding off on an article on some random prize draw until they have a decent photograph doesn't strike me as being that surprising. Oct 8 '17 at 15:59
  • Perhaps the photo was faked. :-) Oct 9 '17 at 0:52
  • They were fake news
    – user13267
    Oct 9 '17 at 9:39
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    Possibly the staff of the Daily Prophet can prophesize what future events will be newsworthy and get images of those future events. And then decide when is the best time to publish those pictures for the mos titnerest from the public. Dec 19 '17 at 22:54

There was a time delay between the writing of the article and the taking of the photo.

This can probably be put down to a minor goof on Rowling's part. Nevertheless, I think it's possible to find an in-universe explanation.

The Daily Prophet article wrote about the holiday in the future tense.

The Weasley family will be spending a month in Egypt, returning for the start of the new school year at Hogwarts, which five of the Weasley children currently attend.
(Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 1, Owl Post).

When the article was written the trip hadn't happened yet. Obviously, by the time the photo was taken the holiday was already underway. So the article and the photo were created independently and at separate times.

It's right to say that Hermione's letter gives the date of publication away somewhat.

Did you see that picture of Ron and his family a week ago?
(Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 1, Owl Post).

Harry's birthday is 31st July, which means that the article was published around 24th July. The Weasleys were on holiday for a month, but we don't know when exactly the end of term is at Hogwarts. Ron wrote his letter from Egypt, though, which means that the article had been written anywhere between one and three weeks before the photo was taken.

As I say in my comment, the idea that the editor held off on publishing the story until he had a decent photo to go with it doesn't strike me as overly surprising. It's not major news and it certainly wasn't time-critical. The Prophet draw was a relatively low-key event, the outcome of which wouldn't have been widely known (or cared about) outside the newspaper. Why not hold off until you can put in a nice photo of the family smiling on holiday whilst using the proceeds of their winnings?

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    so all the events in the Prisoner of Azkaban took place because the editor wanted a nice photo to go with the article. Had he published without waiting Sirius Black would never have seen Pettigrew in the photo and never would have escaped from azkaban.
    – HN17
    Oct 13 '17 at 7:24

The Prophet just needed someone to take the picture and send it back to Britain.

The Daily Prophet didn't need to wait for the Weasleys to go to Egypt and come back to Britain. They also weren't documenting the entire trip the Weasleys were taking. All they needed to do is get one picture for the article to show them on their trip. They could have either had the Weasleys send in the picture themselves, or could have sent a photographer to take a picture of them in Egypt, to run in the article.

In addition, the Prophet probably announced the winner before running that article.

The article Harry saw likely wasn't the one that actually announced who won - the Prophet wouldn't even need to devote an entire article to the announcement of the winner.

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    The Prophet article in the book certainly sounded like an announcement, and we know that the photo and the article were in the same issue since Sirius read them together. Oct 8 '17 at 17:02

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