This cartoon is from El Dia, December 6, 2011; it portrays how local/national media who cover these type of news, has deteriorated over time. There are many journalists that question this behavior but at the end of the day, everything remains the same.
Yellow journalism is grouse and doesn’t show respect to the people involved, their families, and is disrespectful to the overall audience.
In this cartoon, a police ‘turtle’ is saying to a photographer and a reporter vultures: “you better not show these facts, so that we are all tranquil.”
When we read or watch how long did it take the police to arrive to the site of an accident or robbery, we only know about it because the media was there; there are certain media ‘specialized’ in these type of coverage. For the most part, police response is extremely slow and sometimes they ask you to pay for the gasoline of their vehicles so they can do their investigations…
We see higher rank police officers, giving press conferences offering police raids to a neighborhood or to some public sites and wonder, why don’t the police send an invitation to the criminals out there? Of course thieves will not show up! And the reporters ask banal and at times nonsense questions. We see reporters stepping into the evidence, like holding doors or setting aside furniture so the camera can take a good shot; and they just don’t care if the person is suffering, they tend to ask more and more how their relatives were wounded or died; and those ‘vultures’ do not leave until they see tears in the eyes of people who still don’t believe that is happening to them.
Media’s excuse are the ratings, and in Bolivia we do not have a system to rank ratings, it is just a ‘standard excuse,’ editors will say that they have to offer what the public demands; they could show the same news but with a different format and taking into consideration the people, the criminal evidence and they should offer the news not become central part of that action. Furthermore, I would say it is a pretty big assumption that society would ask for that kind of footage or images, we the citizens want to know where in our cities is riskier to go, and how; we need to know that the police is doing their job; we demand to know that those criminals are put in jail for good and not let go after a while. There is an incredible number of things that the media could help, but most only go for the easy yellow type journalism.
In the meantime, citizens have to live in peril, crime rates have increased SO much in the last few years and that it is infuriating. And on top of that we have to watch a lousy media performing in a mediocre way. With a police that is doing a poor job and a judicial system that increases the inefficiencies to public safety.