media coverage of dissent

We’ll discuss media coverage of social dissent, and the range of permissible expression.  Here are two timely video examples of reporting at the scene of the Democratic National Convention in Denver.  Take a look at the two and see how they differ in the framing of protest.  The second gives a kind of base-line for evaluating the first.

6 Responses to “media coverage of dissent”

  1. Denise Charles Says:

    With a brother who lives in Colorado Springs (a fourth year student at Colorado College) and was actually in Denver that day, I sure hope he wasn’t one of the many citizens flicking off the camera in that first video. I also hope (and to my knowledge, know) he wasn’t one of the people getting pepper-sprayed in the eye in the second video.
    Again, wow.
    The media can portray anything to citizens and how will we know it to be true??? Both recordings were of the same day…which came first? The citizens going insane, causing police to take action on them…or was it the police taking action that caused the citizens to go insane?
    Although the media’s job is to inform citizens the truth about events, they also have to attract as many readers/viewers and by doing so, they may edit such occurences to receive that credit. (Obviously, I have just read the first four chapters in Tuned Out and am fresh on the topic)
    To end this post–what happened to straight-forward news/facts???!!!

  2. Brian Says:

    This article is in some ways more unnerving for aspiring journalists than the two posted above…youtube video posted at the bottom.

  3. Ben Says:

    I think that it is a tad misleading to call the second video a “base-line” for evaluating the first. Both accounts obviously had an agenda and were looking at the story through very different lenses. I think that while it is very troubling that the police would crack down in such a manner (at least if they were unprovoked which I’m not entirely certain they were) it is also difficult for me to sympathize with people who are unwilling to show their faces or comment on what they believe in (not only what they are against) coherently (and without using profanity).

  4. Allison Harris Says:

    Political Views of Protestors
    Video#1: Characterized protestors as “leftists,” vague term possibly meant to be insulting. Showed red flags to imply communism. Was “surprised” they didn’t support Obama. Minimal comments by actual protestors. Commented on masks repeatedly and controversial famous people in protest.
    Video#2: Protestors explained their specific opposition to Obama and Bush without comment by reporters. Some of the views could be classified as leftist ideologically, but allowing people to explain their opposition is better than just name calling and reducing them to stereotypes.

    Behavior of Protestors
    Video#1: Obscene, angry uniformly.
    Video#2: Showed anger because of police intervention, gave official reason police were there. Showed people before police intervention being mostly articulate and peaceful.

    Freedom of Speech
    Video #1: Implied that protestors don’t believe in freedom of speech because they refused to talk to reporter, which is a nonsensical argument.
    Video #2: Showed that protestors believe strongly in freedom of speech. Oppose Obama because of FISA, which they believe limits free speech, and oppose police because they felt their free speech rights were violated.

    Overall Impression:
    Video #1: Totally biased with the name-calling. Also, contained less coverage of the protest. Much of the video was simply the reporter commenting.
    Video #2: Doesn’t match with Video #1. Perhaps Video#1 was done at a different time or location, since the weather seems to be a lot sunnier. Clearly sides with protestors on police issue with text comments. I trust this video as news more than #1 because we get to see more of the actual protest and judge for ourselves.

  5. sdreese Says:

    ben raises a good point. i might call the second case a “base-line” in the sense that it goes on for longer with less effort to “package” it, although of course both journalistic efforts have their perspective.

  6. John Odum Says:

    Allison and Ben make great points. Both videos are biased while the first is more obviously so (I mean, it’s Fox news. I challenge you to find a more conservative news channel). My complaint with video #2 is that it made the protesters appear as if their first amendment rights were being violated. As the video showed in the first few seconds, we have the right to peaceably assemble. You can see at 2:00 in the video that the protesters are far from peaceful, even before the police began to take action. The presence of police officers is not an infringement of constitutional rights. It is a safeguard to be in place should the situation turn violent.

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