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News & Events
Boston’s Tragedy Exposes the Dangers of Media Bias PDF Print

Published: 18 April 2013

Country: US

by Aidan White

boston bombingWhen media jump to dangerous conclusions in reporting acts of terrorism it can victimise the innocent and reinforce hatreds. This has been highlighted in coverage of the tragic events in Boston this week.

A twenty-year-old man watching the conclusion of the Boston Marathon had his body torn into by the force of the bomb, which killed three people and injured 176, many of them seriously.

But he was the only victim who, while in the hospital being treated for his wounds, had his apartment searched in “a startling show of force” according to neighbours who watched in amazement as police ransacked his apartment and took away some of personal belongings.

It was this action – as a result of racial profiling by the police – that provided the basis for a widely-criticised report in the  tabloid New York Post which boldly and inaccurately claimed that 12 people were killed in the explosions and, more alarmingly, that a "Saudi national who suffered shrapnel wounds" had been identified as "a suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing."

MDI Program Director at the South Valley University in Egypt PDF Print

Date: 14 April 2013

Country: Egypt

upper egypt universityMedia Diversity Institute Programme Director for Egypt, Hala Morgan, talked to the students at the South Valley University in Upper Egypt. She has presented MDI’s mission and programs to the undergraduate students of the Media Department of Faculty of Arts while attending the final presentations of some graduation projects of diversity.

“By promoting diversity and inclusiveness, MDI is helping media graduates to bridge the gap between the studies and the time of application. That is mainly by providing a Professional Diversity Curriculum Development Courses in cooperation with the distinguished media educators at the three Egyptian universities”, explained Morgan.

She has invited students to contribute to the webzine Ahna Keda that was built as a result of MDI’s workshop organized for 15 Egyptian students in November in Cairo.

MDI provides Media Relations Training for NGOs in Southern Morocco PDF Print

Dates: 5-7 April 2013

Region: Dakhla, Morocco

dakhla snip3How to get the attention of the media was the main topic of the workshop that the Media Diversity Institute organised for representatives of civil society organizations (CSO) from the region of Southern Morocco (Sahara Region). Its aim was to strengthen their understanding of the media and media relations.

The workshop, held in Dakhla, in April 2013, was the latest in a series of five MDI workshops organised to improve communication between the civil sector and the media.

Like in other parts of Morocco, the representatives of non-governmental organisations and civil society have experienced difficulties in communicating with the media. They have found it extremely challenging and stressful to get the media interested in their stories and issues.

Therefore MDI provided an opportunity for better understanding of what the media require and how activists can increase their ability to promote their messages and get their voices heard through the use of the media.

Thessaloniki Commemorates its First Jewish Deportation PDF Print

Published: 11 April 2013

Country: Greece

Thessaloniki Jewish marchThe Greek organisation Symβiosis organized a short tribute for the victims of the first deportation of the Thessaloniki’s Jews to Auschwitz 70 years ago.

The city honoured the 50,000 victims of Nazism with a three-day commemoration in March. Under the slogan “Never Again”, many walked in a peaceful parade from Freedom square to the old station, where the first train with Jewish hostages left in 1943.

“In that limited space of each carriage, eighty people were forcefully loaded. With no water. With nothing. One person on the top of another,” said a demonstrator in a public speech.

“Old people, women, men, children, infants, people who should be on their dying beds, mothers to be, and mothers who had just given birth, they all lived on four roads, behind this very same wall. The roads still exist but with different names.”

Women lose Political Support When Media report on Their Look PDF Print

Published: 11 April 2013

Region: US

sexismWomen’s Media Center and the organisation She Should Run have released two studies that demonstrate the negative role that media play when they report on female politicians’ appearance.

Both studies, ‘An Examination of the Impact of Media Coverage of Women Candidates' Appearance’ and ‘Simulation of the Impact of Sexism in Campaign’, have found that when media coverage focuses on a woman’s look, she pays a price in the political race. All the comments on the woman candidate’s appearance regardless if they are neutral, positive, or negative, made voters less likely to vote for her, studies show.

“Even what we thought was benign coverage about how a woman dresses has a negative impact on her vote and whether voters perceive her as in touch, likeable, confident, effective, and qualified.  And, in close races, sexist coverage on top of the attacks that every candidate faces can make the difference between winning and losing,” explains Celinda Lake, who conducted the research.

These reports are part of a bigger project called ‘Name it, Change it’ that Women’s Media Center and She Should Run have developed in order to identify, prevent, and end sexist media coverage of women candidates in the political elections in the United States.

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