Thesis of chapter:
- “Journalist coverage of foreign places increasingly influences the governance of those places.” (e.g., CNN effect.)
- “The emergence of international governance based on foreign news-driven mediated realities has inherent dangers."
- “Relying on the news media to understand distant places inherently produces a double misreading because…”
- Journalist can misread the news event and
- We (the audience) can misread what the journalist is saying.
- “journalists generally are not equipped to read distant contexts, and neither are their audiences.
Journalist misread for several reasons.
- “First, journalists arriving in a new context are foreigners [who don’t know the history, the religions, etc.]
- “Misreadings also occur because journalists carry their cultural biases with them when reporting in a foreign context.”
- e.g. American values/ways of doing things being seen as normal. Seeing foreign ways as “incomprehensible” or “despicable”.
- “…the journalistic practice of deploying simplistic labels.”
- Taking a complex, sometimes chaotic situation/place and putting into 20 words or less and putting it in a way that U.S. audience will relate to. “ethnic cleansing” label “white supremacy” label used in coverage of S.A.
- “…journalists routinely use binary oppositions when describing foreign contexts” Related to #3
- Common characters in a news story: “good guys” vs. “bad guys” Other characters? Common plot? Again, oversimplification.
- “…when sent to report on foreign contexts, journalists tend to (subconsciously) select contacts with whom they feel comfortable working…”
- “…foreign issues are read in terms of ‘home’ understandings and agendas.”
- e.g., S.A. anti-apartheid struggle = U.S. civil rights struggle. Similar to # 3
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