Showing posts from April, 2012

Balls of Steel

Boom! a deep thudding explosion vibrates through the air."Contact right!” goes up the cry. The group of trainee Journalists in transit with me all move for the right hand doors of the Land Rover. I’m sitting in the passenger as navigator. Out of the corner of my eye I see a man in a balaclava with a pistol lunging for the door. I push at the driver and shout: ”Out your side,” but  he doesn’t budge... Fuck. The gunman swings the door open and pushes the pistol at me shouting: “Get out of the fuckin’ vehicle.” I grab the gun and twist it away from me towards him. He forces it back and I twist it  again. He drags me out of he vehicle and puts the gun to my head. My compatriots are fleeing downhill. “If you don’t come back I’m going to kill him,” shouts the abductor. "One…" They keep running… "Did you hear what I said?." "Two…" They keep running... (The realization dawns: Fuck they’re are not going to come back) "Three..." “Get down on the…

Denial, Depression, Acceptance

"Environmental journalism is about cataloging the decline." (David Adam, Nature) The mere thought evokes in me denial and depression but not, as yet, acceptance...
Denial, depression and acceptance are the the three stages of loss that can be applied from everything from the death of a loved one to environmental degradation. These emotions are also the ones facing any journalist when confronted with the challenge of reporting on the environment. Here, listed, is an array of barriers to communicating truths when it comes to climate change and environmental stories:

1) Where is the event in climate change? Climate change occurs on a timescale that is counter to news values. The mainstream media tends to focus on side line conflict issues, such as climategate or target disagreements, because it fits with their news values...current, fast moving, visual. In order to fit newsroom values stories maybe amplified to give apocalyptic visions of the future as a device to grab attention…