OPINION: ‘Do graphic images inspire paper sales?’

DEAR Editor,-

Why does a community paper deem it necessary to sensationalise the reporting of accidents by adding a series of macabre pictures or videos?

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To report the news is to give a written account of something that one has observed, heard, done or investigated. Any person reading the paper has only to be captivated by the headline or article to create an image in their head without having to see graphic photographs of babies buried alive, foetuses, murder, mangled accident scenes, to name a few.

Who decides whether or not to use such images? Does publishing these pictures not encourage the ongoing submission of these photographs?

Many images submitted are accredited to Med-Evac, SAPS, etc. Should these parties not be securing the scene and administering aid rather than displaying ‘paparazzi like’ behaviour?

Are individuals paid for their submissions or perhaps it’s a self-gratifying achievement to see these images in print?

It appears as if there is a loss of human empathy. Is any time taken to think how this affects family or friends who may not yet have been made aware that an accident has occurred – whether fatal or not.

Are you more likely to buy a paper if these images are posted?




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