Changing styles of disaster reporting

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Crash, Mar 9, 2017.

  1. Not exactly current affairs, but worthy of analysis.

    On 10 April 1968, the inter-island ferry, TEV Waihine rand aground in the entrance of Wellington Harbour, New Zealand. I remember it clearly, although I wasn't connected to it in any way, except for seeing it live on TV - well, as live as possible in 1968. Although living 400 miles north, we were sent home early from school as the storm was so severe, part of the roof had lifted of our building. At home (I walked home by myself in the storm - I was 6) my mother was glued to the TV watching events unfold. Little did I know, the father of a school friend was on the ship - but survived.

    But what makes this interesting is the TV coverage: the reporter is calm, clipped, devoid of emotion, and thoroughly professional. The interviews of survivors, fresh from the lifeboats, are interesting, too. Stoic isn't strong enough description (especially the elegantly dressed old dear who had jumped two decks into the water)



    I do wonder in these "wear your heart on your sleeve" and virtue-signalling days, how a disaster in full sight of the suburbs would be reported. Would they be interviewing counsellors who would speculate on how the survivors would cope? Would "experts" (a term I dread) being queuing up to give their opinions? Would the PM call for a day of mourning in a sombre TV broadcast and expect mounds of petrol station bouquets to mound up all over the place?
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2017
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  2. Everyone would be crying and hugging making sure the cameras were on them whilst I would be hoping for a sleepy Scotsman in a bin lorry to wipe them out.
     
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  3. whilst hugging pillows and fanning their own faces?

    Here's some more interviews with survivors. No blubbing, no angst. The chap doing the long, detailed analysis is, I think, my schoolfriend's dad, who was a journalist. Again, utterly composed even though he'd been through a terrible ordeal. His voice cracks a bit, but none if this looking away from camera or blubbing.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2017
  4. You'd get a lot more 'eyewitness' smartphone video footage (in portrait, not landscape) of events unfolding, including all the wailing and over the top commentary. Despite all the adverts for phones these days telling you that they can record HD in all light conditions, the footage will inevitably be utter dogsh*t and not show anything of significance. This will then be repeated 1000 times on rolling news channels.

    Don't forget the online community changing profile pictures to [INSERT COUNTRY FLAG OF CHOICE] and hashtagging everything.
     
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  5. Yes, the 'everyone is a journalist' nonsense. Indeed, those at the scene wouldn't actually be looking at the horrendous events only a couple of 100 yards away, they'd be busy tweeting or instangramming, or having selfies with the rescuers.

    Just over a year ago we witnessed a car bombing from our apartment. My son grabbed his phone, took images and tweeted them. He even negotiated and sold images to ITN within a couple of minutes...whilst i was getting the body armour out, checking our grab bags were ready and checking the hand-helds were charged up.
     
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  6. Your family holidays sound shit. Try here next year Foreign travel advice


    In all seriousness though, I can see it ending badly if people are to busy dicking about with phones than remaining aware of events. All it takes is to take your eye off the ball and you fall victim to the SVBIED/gunman/secondary device. All for the cost of 140 characters and a potential interview.
     
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  7. We were on a "Hardship Post" with the FCO. But I agree, (and we are probably all guilty of it) smartphones are a bloody nuisance in dangerous situations.
     
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  8. The word 'ordeal'needs to be banned by the BBC and those that use it executed in a manner befitting the North Koreans (as in 'so how did they cope with this ordeal?') - an ordeal is something like surviving several years in a Japanese POW camp, not spending several hours without internet connectivity,..
     
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  9. yes, your typically #firstworldproblem is an 'ordeal'.
     
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  10. I wouldn't wish to use my phone any where nearby in case it resulted in another bang

    Mine sods up the TV - I don't want to find out if its signal will upset a radio triggered device
     
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  11. Different times, different parameters, almost a different species.
    The one that sums it up for me is the coverage of- and behaviour following- the 1953 Farnborough Air Show disaster.
     
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  12. I agree. I recently read "Empire of the Clouds" covering this exciting time in British Aviation - but at an enormous human cost. If an accident such as this happened today, all aerospace development would be banned as a knee - jerk reaction
     
  13. Staggering by today's standards that not only was the next aircraft in the display cracking on through the sound barrier over the still smoking wreckage of the DH110, but the show opened as scheduled the next day too.
     
  14. The (air) show must go on...
     

  15. Didnt that show actually carry on the same day?