By Susan D. Moeller
Hailed as a 'great accomplishment' via the Philadelphia Inquirer , Susan Moeller's Compassion Fatigue warns that the yank media threatens our skill to appreciate the area round us. Why do the media disguise the realm within the approach that they do? Are they only following undefined call for for tabloid-style foreign information? Or are they developing an viewers that has noticeable an excessive amount of - or too little - to care? via a sequence of case experiences of the 'Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse' - sickness, famine, dying and battle - Moeller investigates how newspapers, newsmagazines and tv have lined foreign crises over the past twenty years, selecting the ruts into which the media have fallen and revealing why.
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Extra info for Compassion Fatigue: How the Media Sell Disease, Famine, War and Death
Except for the “reflexive” kind of stories, the no-brainers that scream to be covered, the developing world is now largely ignored. “One of the things that I regret is that there are vast regions of the earth that we don’t cover better,” said Yuenger in 1994. S. versus Soviet perspective, although that perspective is more a function of what the home office is looking for than what the people in the field are finding. ” How the decisions are made about what to cover is “a fairly flukey thing, I think,” she said.
These people are brilliant for 72 hours. ” This “fireman’s” ability to fast-focus on an erupting crisis has abetted journalists’ tendencies to lapse into formula, sensationalism and Americanized coverage. 65 The “generic” effect is accelerated when parachute TV journalism degenerates further into “voice-over” journalism. Cutbacks in the networks’ budgets means that reporters are increasingly turning into packagers, narrating from New York or London over someone else’s videotape. ” The correspondent doing the voice-over often has little background on the story and little personal knowledge of the situation.
And the answer is, give them entertaining stuff. Let’s not bog them down with all this heavy crap, let’s entertain them. We’re not giving our readers news anymore. We’re not giving them something to chew on. It’s light. It’s fluffy. ”55 To fend off readers’ compassion fatigue, sensationalism, formulaic coverage and references to American cultural icons often predominate over thoughtful, less reflexive reporting. As journalist Christopher Hitchens wrote in Vanity Fair, nearly all reporting on Africa is a pastiche of Evelyn Waugh’s Scoop and Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness.