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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Media in Japan (during these difficult times)

Hello Everybody,

today I read the following in an International magazine: Two Extremes: Foreign "Sensationalism" and the more measured, even censorious, coverage by local Journalists

I like it very much as it explains exactly how I felt during the difficult times of the last weeks in Japan.
On one side I thought it is irresponsible how the international media is slaughtering the topics and use people's agony for propaganda in their own countries. And for this I have to praise the Japanese media, as they kept their duty to help the people in the country with fact-based reporting. NHK in Japan did report almost adjective-free in order not to create more fear than there was already. "Domestic media has a responsibility to report the news and important developments, but I think it also has a duty to avoid public panic" stated Martyn Williams in that article. What do you think, how would CNN reacted if it would have happened in USA or "Bild" if it happened in Germany? Would they have acted responsible as well? I honestly doubt it and therefore I like to praise the Japanese Media for this.

On the other hand I must say that the Japanese media did not question anything. They were informative and it seemed well prepared for each development during the day, but at the same time they never criticized  anything (e.g. when TEPCO did the "10 million mistake" or the Government corrected TEPCO in a few cases). This is something what made me worried a bit...

At the end I am happy that I could mix the two media sources and find the middle way, which I think is always the best in life: find a good balance.

Please do not be too hard on the Japanese media as they dealt with the worst catastrophe after WW2 in a calm and professional way. They reported based on facts and not speculation, and this is the nature of this culture. Of course not everything is good, but at the end I prefer an objective analysis over exaggeration.

(The mentioned Article is from EuroBIZ Magazine, April 2011)

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