SEMINAR REFLECTION – WAR JOURNALISM

This week’s lecture covered one very important type of journalism: war reporting. We discussed the importance of war reporting as well as possible limitations and dangers when out on a warzone. We named a few methods of how news organisations can ensue safety for their reporters onsite. One of the ways is to allow the journalist to stay with a group of the army, living and shadowing their actions. However, we soon pointed out that this may limit the reporter in including all sides of the war. We discussed whether it would be possible for the journalist to remain objective when he’s only experiencing life on one side of the warzone. Moreover, news organisations are under constant attack by the public who argue that broadcasters tend to choose sides and not report objectively. We also discussed the way wars may be exaggerated by reporters on the one hand, and reporters downplaying wars and casualties on the other. It is one of journalism’s core values to prevent encouraging your audience a certain way. However, we wondered whether such a thing is possible at all? When reporting on wars, broadcasters must comply with the regulations and consider their audience at all times. Thus, they may decide not too show graphic images and videos as this may cause upset amongst the viewers. However, some argue that excluding such material from reports suggests that the war is under control, which in turn allows the audience to imply that the war has not gotten out of hand. Whereas if you were to publish those images and videos, your audience would get a greater feeling of all the happenings surrounding that said war. We have experienced times were bombings have not been reported at all by news organisations, which makes one wonder: what are other happenings in the world that we do not know of?

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