Media Coverage of 9/11and the Iraq WarLiz Desmond, Lindsay Siebert, and Samantha Derosa
A Montage of the Tragedy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-HcX3iffQcI
The Early Hours What is a paradigm? Specific way of reporting an incident involving large-scale destruction Human error/accident or natural disasters What was the dominant paradigm in the 9/11 coverage? Started as accident Ended as deliberate attack
What is a scalar expression? Finding words and patterns for events, especially intragedy “Attack” and “attacked” were used in over 40% of all headlines “Terror” and “terrorist acts” were used in 30% of all headlines The other words used in headlines were disaster, horror, chaos, infamy, anddevastation Over 1/3 of all headlines the day of 9/11 included “America or USattacked”, “attack on America”, or America under attack”
CNN at an early stage began to display a captionin its coverage, “America Under Attack”“Do not say what you know to be untrue; and, more particularly, do not putinto public domain something which might prove to be drastically wrong.”“Getting it right.”Do you feel that the media used phrases like “America under attack” too soon?If so, why?
Where were those who needed to address themedia? President Bush – in an elementary school, addressed the media briefly atthe time Vice President Cheney- was immediately sent to a White House bunker Secretary of State Powell was flying back from South America – unavailable
How do political leaders affect the media in timesof disaster?
The media portrayed the US as taken bysurprise. What in the media made us think thatthis was a surprise and did we have any priorknowledge?
What was most difficult about covering9/11 in terms of the media?http://www.wxyz.com/dpp/news/as-it-happened%3A-abc-news-coverage-of-9_11-attacks
Embedded Journalism Refers to journalists being attached to military units during armed conflict Term first came to use with the 2003 invasion of Iraq
Journalism and the War in Iraq More than 500 journalists embedded Journalists given special procedures and guidelines Required to sign documents complying with the rules set out at thebeginning about what they could or could not report Gave smaller, locally based newspapers presence
Problems with the Embedding Process Started off with a wave of enthusiasm from both military and newsorganizations, but it was not long before tensions began to emerge. Apprehension about the ability to maintain impartiality Embedded journalism gave the public a distorted picture of the war Only provides snap shot of the war Safety of journalists
Journalists in the Iraq WarOn April 8, 2003, during the US-led invasion of Iraq,Al Jazeera correspondent Tareq Ayoub was killed whena US warplane bombed Al Jazeeras headquarters in Baghdad. More journalists were killed during the US-led invasion and occupation ofIraq than in any war in history. Journalists "Should Not Be There"
Safety for the Journalists The need for safety measures is becoming a major issue in war reporting. What came of this? Risk awareness training, social protection(lifeinsurance), free medical treatment and protection of freelance or part-timeemployees. Aside from causalities, journalists received threats and experiencedexpulsions, detentions and confiscation of equipment. http://fair.org/take-action/media-advisories/iraq-and-the-media/ Knowing what you know about the dangers of reporting in countrieswithin the Middle East, Africa, and North Korea, etc., would you still havethe courage to go over and fulfill your journalistic duties?
Discussion According to the article, “Stages of a Crisis and Media Frames and Functions:U.S. Television Coverage of the 9/11 Incident During the First 24 Hours,” mediaoutlets had to act on their own understanding of the situation due to the lack ofofficial sources. Do you think that the media should assume the role of nationalleader in times of crisis or wait until official sources can be reached? Did the CIA cover up its advance knowledge of at least two of the 9/11hijackers? - if so, how did this affect media coverage? Who was really in charge on the morning of 9/11 - Bush or Cheney? What really happened aboard Flight 93? Did the media leave too much room for error when first broadcasting the news?