How Crime Is Represenred in the News Media

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Birkbeck College|
Student Name: Ufuk Ucar |

HOW HATE CRIME CAN DIFFERENTLY BE REPRESENTED IN NEWS REPORTS? Exploring news reports, which can shape the aspects of our society, within the light of news values and news imperatives.

Crime is always news worthy, especially, in this century of telecommunication, internet and media. It nourishes the audiences, which are waiting to see new events in every new hour. With the impact of internet and fast data transfer, incidents happened in the morning, becomes outdated by the afternoon same day. This requires spanking original news every second. In this case, crime reporting grows to be a savior for news agencies. Crime news is about moments of immediate crisis states Wykes. Whilst reporting a crime, the headlines, choice of words and pictures play a significant role, because; the way that an incident is reported can develop an aspect towards the victims or the perpetrators according to the political or social opinions of the newspaper or the reporter. Dijk remarks this as “choice of words in newspaper headlines plays an important role. Not only do they express the definition of the situation, but they also signal the social or political opinions of the newspaper about the events. That is, headlines not only globally define or summarize an event, they also evaluate it”. Crime can attract attentions easily and occurs constantly which makes it; an irresistible source of news for the reporters. Here rises the question, within the described rush of news reporting, do the reporters care about the news values? Are they aware of the impact of the news reports for the society? Particularly about hate crime reporting, which is a very fragile issue for the societies, and also it concerns mainly the most vulnerable components of our community. Besides all, can they be orientating the society consciously? This can either be in a positive way or a negative way. Can a responsible reporter, who cares about the society, that he or she lives in, introduce a hate crime incident in a way that which helps the society to respond in a positive direction and helps to reduce the tension. Or on the other hand, can a reporter be caring only about the attention that his or her article obtains, regardless of its impact for the social life within that society. It is believed that; hate crime reporting has a great impact and in this regard this paper will try to illustrate how hate crime can differently be represented in the British media and make a critical analyses of some hate crime news reports. To be able to make critics about hate crime reports, this paper will first try to uncover some news values, which should be obtained by the news reporters on average and then discuss about the realities of news reporting for today which sometimes can force reporters to avoid news values when reporting and finally introduce some criteria’s to analyse a dossier of hate crime reports in the British media. Finally this study will try to propose some ideas for a better way of news reporting in order to have a better respond from the society towards hate crime.

News Values and how news can have an impact for the hate crime at a glance: As this study is not primarily a media study, in this part of the paper, the news values will be pointed out briefly. Whilst reporting an incident, reporters should try to be as just and fair as possible. Objectiveness and neutrality are amongst the most essential virtues of news reporting. News reporters should stick to ‘what happened exactly’ and commit themselves to state only the incident itself without planting any personal or political opinions. Otherwise, reporters could create themselves a role of evaluating, criticizing and commenting, which should totally be left to the readers. With shortly mentioning about news values, in the following part,...
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