How To Stage War Reporting

Via Russia Today, an interesting look at mainstream media outlets (Al Jazeera, CNN) dramatizing conflict journalism — in this case, in Syria.

The camera is shaken to make the footage seem raw and amateur, a stream of grey smoke in the sky is reported as stemming from a nonexistent “explosion”, and an onscreen personality requests background gunfire for a sound effect for his live shot on Anderson Cooper 360. In short, “The activists who become journalists try to make their shows as ‘hard’ as possible. The more blood and death, the higher the price.”

9 Comments on "How To Stage War Reporting"

  1. I cant believe everything I see on television. Good to know.

    • Liam_McGonagle | Mar 22, 2012 at 4:33 pm |

      Maybe not even the debunkers.

      I can’t dispell from my mind, even temporarily, the fact that Russia Today is a government-sponsored medium, with its own controversial caudillo at the helm, Vladimir Putin.  Context, please:  Putin is currently isolated in the U.N., stalling action against his brother dictator Asad.

      Whom do you trust when all the major players have reasons to lie?  Nobody in this picture is a saint, and I wouldn’t blame anyone for honestly coming to a different conclusion.  But I personally regard the balance of the evidence as being in favor of Al Jazeera and CNN this one.  The “Cui bono” factor seems a bit lopsided.

      That’s not to say that a full-bore U.N. intervention is necessarily possible or called for.  False dichotomy is a separate issue, belonging to the realm of logical fallacy than factual accuracy of arguments that may be used to support them.

      • Antediluvian | Mar 22, 2012 at 9:06 pm |

        Well said!  I don’t trust RT.  Even though I like how they report and focuss on matters the Western media tries to ignore, they don’t do it as ‘bona fide’ journalists.  The geopolitical game Russia is playing expresses itself way too obviously in the pro-Russian propaganda you hear on RT.  

        All I see on there is anti-Americanism.  One the one hand, good thing, I’m not the biggest supporter out there for yankee imperialism.  Though the excess of it makes you think : “Hey RT, why so upset?  Traumatized or something?”

      • Your assertion, then, is that RT used expert video manipulation to stage the footage of “Danny”? Or, alternatively, it doesn’t matter what video they provide, they are a “government-sponsored medium” from a wicked enemy-state so are irrelevant. (As opposed to the BBC which is a “government-sponsored medium” from part of the NATO Pact of Steel so can be trusted to accurately whip the public into war hysteria.) 

        • Liam_McGonagle | Mar 23, 2012 at 11:21 am |

          ha ha ha!


          Read what I’ve actually written, rather than what you wish I’d written.

          • That’s the reasonable conclusion on the path you’ve set yourself. If you choose not be bound by reason, though, that’s a different story. 

  2. So basicly the media tries to munipulate public opinion through terrifyng yet amazing visuals of conflict to benefit those paying their wages? Wow, how original….

  3. Where exactly is it etched in stone that a news agency cannot take a side on a major political issue? This is just RT taking an opportunity to slam an actual news agency as opposed to a populist scandal mag.  Tell you what I’d love to see from Russia Today; an in-depth, objective series of articles featuring interviews and footage) on the subject of CHECHNYA. I’d be watching carefully to make a note of how many times the word, ‘pipeline’ is used. I don’t think I’ll be needing my abacus somehow (in fact, I don’t think I’ll be needing all the fingers of one hand) If your looking for objective truth, climb a banyan tree. Throughout the Arab Spring, I’ve seen and read many articles by AJ that interviewd commentators and players from many different sides and viewpoints. Asking me to believe RT over Al Jazeera is like asking me to believe the BBC and The Guardian are rubbish because the editor if The Sun said so. 

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