Thursday, February 03, 2011


I think that's what the commercial media are feeling this morning. I just don't think Yasi gave them the desired level of disaster and destruction, certainly no lives lost (thank goodness). Yes, houses have lost roofs, banana crops have been "devestated" and I'm sure a few smaller towns like Mission Beach are a real mess but I just get the feeling that's not enough.

The term "disaster porn" has been put out there and I love it. The media has been wallowing in it big time - the bushfires, the mine disasters, the floods, now Cyclone Yasi. They just can't get enough of this nonsense in the guise of keeping us updated with latestest (non)developments.

This constant, on-the-spot reporting of absolutely nothing is really stupid. It's hanging around waiting for something to happen and filling in the time with gibberish. For the dumb viewer like me it's emotionally draining and of no particular use. For the people really experiencing these emergencies I'm sure the "news" coverage is of no use whatsoever - most have their power cut and would be relying on radio news if they have access to battery powered radios.

What I really hate is the emotive language used in these constant reports. It's always the "worst ever", "terrible", "horrific", "devestating", "carnage", "apocolyptic". Words that inspire panic and dread but don't really tell us anything about the situation in specific terms.

This is the evolution of the sort of news reporting which hatched out of September 11. I blame CNN.

While there were (hopefully) no deaths as a result of Yasi there was at least a gift from the media gods, a Yasi Baby. All is not lost.

1 comment:

Kath Lockett said...

AGREE totally. LOVE your word, 'disasterpointment'. It was pretty clear just from them using the same photos and footage over and over that there wasn't quite enough destruction, misery (or, damnit, death) to make it truly newsworthy.

And if I have to hear about the cyclone baby one more fucking time.....