Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Again: Is everyone okay?

897 Responses

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  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Kumara Republic,

    Borderline snuff media, methinks?

    I think there's a very lively Media7 panel in that question -- though I wouldn't assume anyone from The Herald would front to it.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Andre Alessi,

    It's not actually "graphic" in the sense of "blood and guts", by the way, it's the context that makes it disturbing. I don't think it was clear to the photographer what was going to happen while the photo was taken.

    Maybe it was. I'll never forget the story of the American photographer who was at Bob Kennedy's side when he was shot, and immediately got his camera out to take pictures - even though he was friends with Kennedy. At that moment he was doing his job, and his job was to take pictures, be our eyes. An editor's job is whether to use those pictures or not, and how sensitively and in what context. But I have no problems with the photographer in this instance.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    At that moment he was doing his job, and his job was to take pictures, be our eyes. An editor’s job is whether to use those pictures or not, and how sensitively and in what context

    Exactly. A camerman or photographer's job is to see through his lens. The difficult judgements later are to be made by editors.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report Reply

  • Carol Stewart, in reply to Sacha,

    +quite a few, Sacha. I thought she was wonderful.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2008 • 830 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Carol Stewart,

    She spoke beautifully, and I couldn't stop thinking: boy, you didn't sign up for this, did you?

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Andre Alessi,

    Still shows the graphic content warning and a "click here to view image" link for me

    But clicking does nothing and the caption as noted had changed since the link was posted here.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I also remember not long after Princess Di was killed, Steve Coz, the then editor of the National Enquirer, rejected any photos of the dying royal - and was very public about it.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5443 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The difficult judgements later are to be made by editors

    Agreed. This has been a problem with live TV interviews. I do sympathise with journos who are in the spot in the most harrowing of circumstance and whose own mental capacities are under great strain.

    I feel that the pressure to keep producing these segments, and the consequent brutal questioning of people who should be left alone, is a large-scale error of editorial judgement.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark, in reply to Sacha,

    I found that account more distressing than anything else I have read by a stranger, so far.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3136 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I feel that the pressure to keep producing these segments, and the consequent brutal questioning of people who should be left alone, is a large-scale error of editorial judgement.

    There's the brutal questioning and then there's the injection of extra pathos, with the anchor as high priest channeling the nation's grief. I stayed well away from John Campbell this time after his antics with the Pike River CEO - that was atrocious.

    But I feel like I need to repeat this, again: RNZ has been just fantastic. Respectful, informative, always on. What an example.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    I am ashamed to admit that I had been listening to 1ZB on the way to and from work in the last 3 days, but I changed the station to NR this morning. Much better.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3136 posts Report Reply

  • Carol Stewart, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    Respectful, informative, always on

    On a sustained basis, too. Still more or less continuous coverage after three days. Great commitment.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2008 • 830 posts Report Reply

  • Carol Stewart,

    Can anyone make head or tail of what Jim Hopkins is on about?

    Wellington • Since Jul 2008 • 830 posts Report Reply

  • recordari, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    But I feel like I need to repeat this, again: RNZ has been just fantastic. Respectful, informative, always on. What an example.

    In general, I agree. There was just one point yesterday afternoon where Mary Wilson was grilling Bob Parker about the time to identify people, and to give some idea when we could expect more information. He became a bit uncomfortable I felt, but then I might be being a bit sensitive on his behalf, and that's his job I suppose.

    Otherwise, incredible how they have managed interviews with people in the most extraordinary circumstances.

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to recordari,

    There was just one point yesterday afternoon where Mary Wilson was grilling Bob Parker

    ... Yeah, well that's Mary Wilson -- being persistent is one thing, but she really needs to refine her instinct for when it's more about her ego (I suspect) than eliciting useful information

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I don't think Mary Wilson was being too harsh, I think it was more that she wanted the answers. After all, Bob Parker wanted the role of "emergency go to guy" when he stood for mayor, and it's only reasonable that he provides some detail now and then. I thought he handled it well, and I got a better understanding of the no-chance-for-error identification process as a result.

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 528 posts Report Reply

  • Dismal Soyanz, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Ouch. Not sure it's about ego but in the past she has at times dug a little too hard for the scandalous sound-bite.

    I totally agree about the quality of NR reporting. On the first day, TV3 coverage provided the immediate visual impact - this is the scene, viewers can easily come to their own opinion as to how bad things are. But after the first period of shock, the plight of Christchurch residents, what was going on, what was being done - it just seemed more appropriate for that to come through on the radio.

    TVNZ failed to impress.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2010 • 310 posts Report Reply

  • Greg Dawson, in reply to Carol Stewart,

    Can anyone make head or tail of what Jim Hopkins is on about?

    I might be being too sensitive, but I got the impression he was winding up to make a link between the quake and global warming, and how both were nothing to do with people.

    ETA: I should say this interpretation was probably influenced by the wider oeuvre of Hopkins.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 294 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams, in reply to Greg Dawson,

    Greg, I don't much like his narrative either but I'm inclined to give most Christchurch-based commentators a break under the circumstances (though strongly agree with the praise for Zara Potts piece which was deeply moving). Still, all commentators would be wise to avoid turning this situation into evidence for or against any other cause unless they're a geologist.

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2273 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Mikaere Curtis,

    I think it was more that she wanted the answers. After all, Bob Parker wanted the role of “emergency go to guy” when he stood for mayor, and it’s only reasonable that he provides some detail now and then.

    Well, that's nice. And if Parker doesn't have answers to give, he should just say so and move the fuck along. Really, I'm sorry if this comes across as a tad bitchy but feeding the media copy is NOT anyone's prime obligation, and nobody is actually standing around scratching their arses and playing silly buggers with the media or the public.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Alex Coleman, in reply to Carol Stewart,

    Can anyone make head or tail of what Jim Hopkins is on about?

    Not very often, no. He is consistent at whatever it is though.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 247 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    Really, I'm sorry if this comes across as a tad bitchy but feeding the media copy is NOT anyone's prime obligation

    Tadness, as ever, eloquently achieved :) IMO, fronting to the media is actually part of the mayor's job description, but obviously its a matter of degree, which is probably where we disagree.

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 528 posts Report Reply

  • recordari,

    Hmm, that starting something a bit unintended. On reflection, if anything, MW may have been channeling the frustration of the people spoken with earlier in the day who wanted to know where their wives, husbands, children etc were, or when they might get a greater degree of certainty.

    In any case, this afternoon the interview with the Brisbane doctor who assisted in the Victorinox amputation was on another level entirely. If you didn't hear it, the two doctors and one anesthetist had to make the decision, and then send the smallest one, a slighter female doctor, in to carry out the life saving ‘surgery’, while the building shook with the regular aftershocks.

    They really need to say ‘check your windscreen wipers’ before these reports. Talk about getting inside the story.

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Mikaere Curtis,

    IMO, fronting to the media is actually part of the mayor’s job description,

    And I don't know anyone, least of all me, saying otherwise. Parker really can't win, can he - because there were plenty of people accusing him last September of cynically media-whoring the last quake into a second term.

    It is his job to front the media. But it's his responsibility -- not only as the mayor but a decent human being -- to make sure every word out of his mouth is accurate, considered and constructive. Pulling speculation out of his arse is none of the above -- in fact, there are circumstances where it can be dangerous.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Scott A, in reply to Carol Stewart,

    Can anyone make head or tail of what Jim Hopkins is on about?

    That shit happens, and that people are people?

    I actually thought it was quite poetic and poignant, explaining that disasters have happened before and will happen again and it is by holding, hugging, loving that we survive.

    But, then, I'll admit I haven't read much of his other writings. Maybe that's why I don't think he was drawing an equivalence between climate change and earthquakes.

    The wilds of Kingston, We… • Since May 2009 • 133 posts Report Reply

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