Friday, November 13, 2009

Pakistan faces up to its media horrors

With the contining battle against terrorism in Pakistan,this guest post on the Dawn blog looks at how the sensativities of the population have been numbed by the media

It seems being the frontline ally in the war against terror has numbed our sensitivities. And the ongoing quest for the highest ratings among the broadcast media is adding wind to the sails of insensitivity.

adding that

you realise how worthless the loss of human life is and how easily people get away with murder. Now that sense of worthlessness is being compounded in the name of free media.

It's a question that the media worldwide has to grapple with balancing the often gruesome facts of reporting with the need to self regulate tbroadcasting of the horrors.

When decision makers at channels are asked if it’s appropriate to sully the airwaves in this manner, they shrug and offer the evergreen reply that it is their responsibility to report what is happening.

Their solution?

Broadcasters need to carefully consider – on a case-by-case basis, no less – what constitutes good reporting, and what is mere exhibitionism. And in an ideal situation, viewers need to be given a choice about what kinds of images they consume, rather than being forced to scamper for the remote and change the channel every time blood or a body part flash across the screen.

Ht-Adrian Monck

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