As a journalist your job is to report and seek out stories that are considered newsworthy, but what happens when what we are reporting starts causing other issues to arise? Is there a certain point when something should not be reported on?
Lately the hot topic that keeps popping up in our newspapers, twitter feed, Facebook and newsrooms is, terrorism.
It is clear society needs to be aware of issues that occur which include such extremist actions. However is the media coverage on these events going too far? Are we now just circulating fear? Or creating division between cultures? Does everything need to lead to the idea of terrorism? With ‘everyday situations (traveling to and from work) and objects (a back-pack, a credit card, a mobile phone) become subliminally associated with the threat of terrorism.’
Terrorism and the media have developed this ‘dangerous symbiosis’. The media know exactly which headlines will grasp the audience attention. This is where the issue of too much coverage on these events is created. “The media are attracted by extreme terrorist acts not only because it is their duty to report on any major event but also because the dramatic and spectacular aspect of terrorism fascinates the general public.” But is the coverage of these acts by extremists giving terrorism the spotlight they desire?
The media allows for such acts to create an atmosphere of fear and to reach a greater audience.
It is clear that terrorism makes an attractive boon for media coverage, this is partly a result from the attention this type of news receives from readers. However the issue does not necessarily come from ‘why’ the media is covering this kind of news but more of the ‘how’ it is presenting the findings to the public.