A new low in New Zealand journalism – Napier siege coverage

May 8, 2009

I was so angry last night that I tweeted.

I could not believe what I was seeing on Close Up. A police officer’s body lying in a Napier street and the vultures of the media circulating, sniffing out a tasty morsel or two.

In the case of Close Up the tasty morsels were the mother and the brother of the alleged gunman.

Then again this morning,  the brother, Peter Molenaar, was back on air. This time on Morning Report and the questioning was sickening.

“Do you think you’ll see your brother alive again”

“Why did he open fire? Did you know he had guns in the house?”

“Did you know he was doing drugs? Was he using P?”

These are questions for the coronial inquest, not for radio hosts. The news media is overstepping the boundaries of public decency in relation to this story. It’s not over yet. The siege is ongoing, there’s likely to be more blood on the streets of Napier. The way things are going, we’ll get it live at 6pm tonight and again at 7pm.

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More on Ms Mirthala Salinas

July 6, 2007


The Spanish-language television news anchor, Mirthala Salinsa, who has been outed for a two-year affair with Los Angeles mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa, (shown pictured, right) continues to make headlines around the world.

Ms Salinas has been condemned for a serious breach of ethics – basically that reporters don’t sleep with sources. I’ve been around long enough to know that this is not the first, or last time this will happen. Politico-journo marriages and affairs have been a staple of reporters’ bar room gossip for hundreds of years. News is sexy; it’s exciting and there’s always plenty of hormonal “juice” in the air.

However, that’s no justification it seems. This is because the other side of journalism is quite nasty. If there’s blood in the water, or a sniff of scandal in the air, all bets and confidences are off.

The bottom line though, is that the noise and blather about this case is hypocritical. The unwritten code has always been, “Don’t ask, don’t tell,” but when the rumours are confirmed, like in this story, “move in for the kill.”

Unfortunately, the mayor will probably survive – after all he’s a bloke who can’t keep it in his pants (entirely excusable in the topsy-turvy world of sexual politics). She on the other hand is obviously a sl*t who’s an insatiable Latina nymphomaniac and she deserves to be burned at the stake like the obvious witch she is (I’m being sarcastic here, just in case you can’t read between the lines).

To follow this story, try these links:


Celeb agent for shooting victim

July 2, 2007

Celeb agent for shooting victim | The Courier-Mail

A Melbourne woman who was wounded recently in a shooting that claimed the life of a bystander who intervened, has signed up with celebrity spruiker Harry M. Miller. Watch this space, I’m sure this will turn into a great saga of chequebook journalism.


Does news HAVE a future?

April 28, 2007

It’s probably still a rare thing for a blogger to actually advertise a rival blog in a post, but here goes. This deserves a shout. I got this message from Steve Borris, the associate director of the Center for the Application of Information Technology at the Washington University in St Louis. I’ve had a quick tour of “the future of news” and it’s probably going to become a regular stop on my rounds of the blogosphere. It’s covering some of the same ground as me, but ventures into technology a bit more than I might do. The “future” of news and journalism is a subject close to my own intellectual interests and my own passions about the future of journalism (but not as we know it). I will add a permanent link in my own blogroll, but for now, check it out. Here’s the gist of Steve’s message:

Hello,

I would like to call your attention to “The Future of News” blog that was launched last month. It is a spin-off of a college course by the same name that I teach at Washington University in St. Louis. This site provides a vision of what news will look like 5-15 years from now. It also provides ongoing commentary on how closely day-to-day events fit this vision. While most web-based information on the future of news tends to focus on the perspectives of those involved with current news organizations or technology, this site will also incorporate perspectives from history, political science, consumer marketing, economics, and finance. This should be evident in the three permanent articles that I have posted on the site: News as it was meant to be, Four advances that set news back, and The future of news.


The (not so) poor old Corbys

April 14, 2007

Schapelle Corby continues to languish in an Indonesian prison after being convicted of drug-smuggling in a flashy show trial, and her family is being hounded for the proceeds of her book sales. Now there’s a new twist, former “second best friends” are fallling out in a case that’s set to go before the NSW Supreme Court.
Mercedes Corby is suing her former gal-pal Jodi Power over claims made by Power that the Corby family is involved in drug dealing on a major scale.
Channel Seven’s Today Tonight is also named in the writ as the Sydney Morning Herald recently reported.
“Ouch”, cat fight ahead!


British soldiers get paid for the story of their capture

April 13, 2007

The ethical outrage of this week has been the news that the British soldiers and sailors who spent two weeks in an Iranian prison after their capture in the Shat al Arab are to be paid to sell their stories to the British tabloids.
It created a bit of outrage in all the right places and led to accusations that they were now being used as propaganda tools by the British government. even though Tony Blair’s office has denied this as ‘outrageous’. The ex-captives’ colleagues are also taking the piss on several military-themed websites. It seems that the idea you sould be able to make money out of your suffering is anathema to the balls-out military tradition of take-it and suffer in silence.
There are serious issues though, such as the use of chequebook journalism and the role of the media in the way that the whole episode was reported. No one comes out of this looking good.