|The gunman posted a video on YouTube the day|
before the shooting
In this week's The Listening Post
, Richard Gizbert looks at the media reaction to Finland's high school shooting and the limits of reporting the war in Iraq through embedded journalists.
We start in Finland this week, where an 18-year-old went on the rampage at Jokela High School killing eight people before turning the gun on himself. High school shootings are a common phenomenon in the US and receive extensive media coverage. In Finland these killings were unprecedented and the media there responded in a measured way. A variety of experts were trooped out in front of the cameras to analysis the tragedy and newspaper editorials agonised over how this could happen in a quiet Finnish town. But there was little coverage of the victims themselves or interviews with the bereaved.
Like the killer at American high school Virginia Tech in April this year, the gunman at Jokela used new media to broadcast his side of the story. He posted a video called The Jokela High School Massacre on YouTube the day before. The clip was set to a song called Stray Bullet and showed stills of the school and the killer posing with a handgun. He had reportedly been banned from the file-sharing site for posting violent material in the past but was able to register under a new name.
|Al Jazeera's Josh Rushing talks about|
embedded journalists in Iraq
Our other big story this week looks at the challenges faced by news organisations in telling the story of the war in Iraq. Four-and-a-half years in to the war, the death toll for journalists has reached record proportions but there is criticism that too much reporting comes from the Green Zone or from briefings in Washington.
Then there are the 'embeds', the journalists who sign on to the Pentagon's embedded reporter programme, which assigns them to military units in return for a contractual agreement that gives them the right to veto their material. Salah Khadr looks at this controversial reporter between the military and the media.
In Newsbytes, we report on the other big media stories of the week. Pakistan's President Musharraf expelled three reporters from the UK's Daily Telegraph after the newspaper article described him as a SOB. In Georgia, police raided Imedi TV forcing the station to go off air in the middle of a broadcast. The independent broadcaster had been airing footage of clashes between riot police and anti-government demonstrators. And in Sudan, ten people were sentenced to death for the murder of a high profile newspaper editor.
Watch this episode of The Listening Post here: