“If There Are No Pictures Of The Fighting, Do We Report The Story?”


By Brian Comment

NBC’s Martin Fletcher is back in Gaza, and he says it’s quite dangerous:

  Nobody is filming the daily fighting between Hamas and Fatah militias, as well as all the other family and revenge-driven shootings among Palestinians in Gaza because the gunmen threaten to kill the cameramen and other journalists.

And this raises a question about the limits of television news. If there are no pictures of the fighting, do we report the story?

The first question of the television news editors is usually: ‘What are the pictures like?’ If we answer, ‘Well, there are 25 dead but we don’t have any pictures,’ then the response will often be, ‘OK, well we’ll pass.’

So the Palestinian gunmen’s threats work. They don’t want to be seen shooting at each other because it’s bad for their image. They threaten the journalists, and they mean it.

Here’s the full blog entry…