Currently, it takes some time to respond to comments because I have some other things I have to prioritize.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

NZ earth quake and the media

On February 24, two Japanese "journalists" were arrested over night when they tried to enter Christchurch Hospital to interview victims of the earthquake.
After the earthquake in the area, the police established a cordon, and curfew was put.
Anyone without a valid ID was to be arrested at that time.

According to New Zealand Press association, "the incident, which happened overnight, was referred to police and the pair were subsequently arrested."
So they gave trouble to both the hospital and the local police - in the busiest time.
Let me apologize to them for what the Japanese journalists did.

I could easily find several online articles dealing with the incident in English.
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10708443
http://news.ninemsn.com.au/world/8215788/two-reporters-arrested-in-christchurch
http://news.msn.co.nz/article/8215966/two-reporters-arrested-in-christchurch
http://www.hawkesbaytoday.co.nz/local/news/christchurch-earthquake-two-japanese-journalists-a/3941853/
http://kiwi247.com/news/christchurch-earthquake-two-journalists-arrested

On the other hand, there was only one article written in Japanese by a Japanese online news site.
Judging from the articles I found on the site, it's pro-internet and supports the voices on the internet.  http://www.j-cast.com/2011/02/24088938.html?ly=cm&p=1
Of course it's not funded by major broadcasting companies.

The two journalists somehow thought "the freedom to broadcast" could override the local law to be undoubtedly respected, and then the Japanese media unanimously chose "the freedom not to broadcast" probably because the majority of the Japanese media often take the same kind of actions as the two did.

Here's a story about the Great Hanshin earthquake.
When there was a great earthquake in Japan, the Japanese media mobilized as many helicopters as possible not for the rescue, but to exercise their "freedom to broadcast."
Subsequently, the rescuers had hard time hearing groans of the people buried alive.
Can we not say the media indirectly killed the victims by exercising their "freedom to broadcast"?

What's interesting here is that there are numerous Japanese blogs dealing with the incident in Japanese, and all of them condemn the journalists and the mass media as a whole.
Unfortunately, the misuse of the right to broadcast is often observable among the Japanese media and was no wonder for the Japanese bloggers that the journalists, in the name of the freedom of broadcasting, violated the law.
The media used to be able to conceal this kind of inconvenient truth about themselves, but it's no longer the case.  Let's see how long they will persist in the way they are now.

Do you know the enemy?

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