The horrific Kyoto Animation Co. arson attack that killed 36 people and injured 33 others in July could very well be remembered as a pivotal moment in the Japanese media’s coverage of crime victims.
Domestic media refrained from excessively covering the relatives of those hurt or killed at the studio in Kyoto’s Fushimi Ward, but also explained their rationale for disclosing the victims’ names over their families’ objections.
Reporters on the scene agonized over how to cover the tragedy professionally while taking into account the feelings of the next of kin, who were in the midst of processing their grief.
Families in the meantime were afraid the reputations of their loved ones would be tarnished on social media once their names were released.
Ultimately, many news organizations felt that attaching names and faces to the tragedy, instead of just figures, would humanize it.
Media customs regarding disclosure differ from country to country and by organization.
In the United States and Britain, for example, disclosure of accident or crime victims’ names is widely practiced, with the public’s right to know taking precedence. Germany and South Korea, on the other hand, withhold victims’ names in principle to prioritize privacy.
Reporters covering the arson attack in Kyoto were bewildered because each news organization’s reporting activities were exposed on the internet, often resulting in public criticism of their coverage.
The attack on Kyoto Animation, abbreviated KyoAni, took place on July 18. But the victims’ names were released in stages, starting with 10 on Aug. 2, then 25 on Aug. 27. The 36th victim died in early October.
Why did it take so long?
The Kyoto Prefectural Police made contact with the next to kin for consent to release the victims’ names and to ask whether anyone in the family would agree to a media interview. The National Police Agency also instructed the Kyoto police to get consent before releasing any names. Of the 36 victims’ families, 22 declined.
According to a petition claiming a violation of human rights brought to the Kyoto Bar Association in early December, even though the Kyoto police told news outlets that family members had refused to release victims’ names, they did so anyway.
Some argue that disclosure is vital in reporting major criminal cases or accidents accurately and providing valuable lessons for society.
Both national dailies and local papers ran reports on the KyoAni attack using the names released by the police. At the same time, they cooperated to avoid engaging in excessive coverage.
For example, representatives from each organization visited the families and others concerned instead of mobbing them with the usual media scrum and immediately left when their requests were rejected. They also shared information amongst themselves on the families’ reactions.
The Asahi Shimbun and many other newspapers also explained their reasons for naming the victims.
In its coverage, the Mainichi Shimbun decided to offer a detailed explanation of why it chose to name the victims, paying due consideration to the families and avoid media scrums.
On the day after the names of 25 victims were announced, the Mainichi ran an article on its stance on releasing the names and included past cases where it chose to withhold names.
“Speaking from my experience of being a reporter covering incidents and accidents, I think a name offers ‘proof of living,’” said freelance journalist Akihiro Otani in the Mainichi’s Sept. 16 edition.
“There were people who came to the scene of the incident, saying ‘Because I knew the names I felt the need to come to offer my prayers.’ … Reporting names in the media is a manifestation of the resolve not to allow a victim’s life to fade away with time.”
The Kyoto Shimbun released a story on distressed KyoAni reporters under the headline “Torn over the risks of hurting bereaved families” in its Aug. 18 edition. On Aug. 28, the daily also reported on an in-house debate it held on whether anonymous coverage truly conveys the families’ grief to readers.
While the Kyoto daily decided to post photos after receiving consent in principle, the reporters reached an agreement, endorsed by senior editors, not to cover the wakes and funerals, according to Shigetaka Meguro, a managing director in the general news section.
Just rattling off such reasons as the “right to know,” “matter of record” and public disclosure being “common sense abroad” may not hold much sway with grief-stricken families. Experts argue that more convincing justification is needed.
At a third-party meeting organized by Kyodo News in November, journalist Yasushi Kamada made the point that “The rationale of releasing names because there is a ‘right to know’ is not a persuasive argument for the average person.”
Masahiro Sogabe, a professor of information law at Kyoto University’s graduate school, posed the question, “Are victims’ names for public purview? I think the people involved and their families’ intentions should also be respected.”
In the United States, the names of the deceased are usually disclosed after their next of kin are notified but are sometimes withheld in sex-related crimes or cases involving minors.
In Britain, police have worked out a guideline with media outlets stipulating that victims names are to be disclosed once their families have been notified. If the victim is alive, they need to get consent from the victim or the next of kin.
In Germany, victims’ names are usually withheld except in the case of public figures. In principle, protection of privacy also applies to perpetrators. But their given names, along with the first letter of their surnames, appear in media reports. Full names and photos of the accused, however, can be revealed at each news organization’s discretion in high-profile cases.
Korean media do not report names except in cases involving celebrities because the police refuse to release them under a law protecting crime victims. Perpetrators’ names are also withheld, though exceptions are sometimes made for particularly heinous crimes.
The detailed explanation provided by newspapers as well as media reports on how this issue has sparked internal debate at news outlets in the wake of the KyoAni attack suggest a new direction for media coverage in Japan.
Media celebrates Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's life, legacy – Lethbridge News Now
“We never expected the film to generate the reaction that it did. Many people were unfamiliar with her pre-judicial career as a lawyer for the ACLU and how she played such an essential role in securing equal rights, particularly for women, which meant all Americans benefited,” she wrote. “The stories of her personal struggle to become an attorney makes her singular contributions to the law that much more poignant. And her enduring marriage to Martin Ginsburg touched and moved audiences of all genders and generations.”
This CNN Films documentary will be broadcast Sunday on CNN at 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. Eastern. The film is also available via CNN on demand with cable and satellite subscriptions beginning Sunday, and for streaming on CNNgo platforms, also beginning Sunday until Sept. 26.
The documentary is available for streaming on Hulu, Apple TV and for rent on Amazon Prime Video and in the iTunes store.
A NEW MAGAZINE COVER
Time magazine will feature Ginsburg on one of multiple special covers for an October double issue presenting the 2020 Time 100 list of the world’s most influential people. It will include a special tribute to the justice, who was featured on the list in 2015.
The issues will be available on newsstands in the U.S. beginning Sept. 25.
“ON THE BASIS OF SEX”
The 2018 biopic focusing on Ginsburg’s law school years and early legal career is available for purchase on Amazon Prime Video and in the iTunes store.
Felicity Jones, who portrayed the young law student and fighter for justice, told the AP in an email Saturday that Ginsburg was a beacon.
“Ruth Bader Ginsburg gave us hope, a public figure who stood for integrity and justice — a responsibility she did not wear lightly,” she wrote. “She will be missed not only as a beacon of light in these difficult times but for her razor sharp wit and extraordinary humanity. She taught us all so much. I will miss her deeply.”
Other distribution plans for the movie were pending Saturday.
KATE McKINNON AND “SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE”
McKinnon, who has played Ginsburg in a series of “Weekend Update” segments on the NBC show stretching back to 2015, appeared on Thursday’s online 2020 National Constitution Event honouring Ginsburg.
She praised the trailblazer in a statement Saturday.
“For so many of us, Justice Ginsburg was a real-life superhero: a beacon of hope, a warrior for justice, a robed crusader who saved the day time and again,” McKinnon said. “Playing her on SNL was a profound joy because I could always feel the overwhelming love and gratitude that the audience had for her. It was one of the great honours of my life to meet Justice Ginsburg, to shake her hand, and to thank her for her lifetime of service to this country.”
NEWS & TRIBUTES
Tributes and re-broadcasts are trending on streaming services and the apps of major networks, with more to come.
Plans for “CBS Sunday Morning,” beginning at 9 a.m. Eastern, include journalist Erin Moriarty looking back on the life and times of the justice. Rita Braver, who covered Ginsburg, will offer an appreciation. John Dickerson of “60 Minutes” will report on the political implications of her death and “60 Minutes” correspondent Bill Whitaker will have a tribute at the end of the Sunday night broadcast.
The network’s “CBS This Morning” with co-hosts Gayle King, Anthony Mason and Tony Dokoupil will dedicate much of Monday’s broadcast to remembering Ginsburg and also look at the fight for who will replace her on the court.
At NBC, the news division and those of its other networks, are already out with special reports. On MSNBC, a past profile, “Justice Ginsburg,” was re-broadcast as word of her death spread. The NBC streaming service Peacock is streaming the National Constitution Center virtual gathering for Ginsburg.
Sunday on ABC’s “This Week,” George Stephanopoulos will go one-on-one with former President Bill Clinton on the trailblazing icon he nominated to the Supreme Court. Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senator Ted Cruz will discuss the fight to fill Ginsburg’s seat.
Throughout Saturday, Fox News shows “FOX & Friends,” “CAVUTO Live” and “America’s News HQ” will discuss the legacy and historic career of Ginsburg. Joining the live coverage will be Chris Scalia, a son of Ginsburg’s close friend and colleague, late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
Fox News Channel will present a one hour special on the life and legacy of Ginsburg on Sunday at 10 p.m. Eastern, anchored by Shannon Bream.
Leanne Italie, The Associated Press
RETRANSMISSION – MEDIA AVAILABILITY: CN Police officers available for media interviews during Rail Safety Week – GlobeNewswire
MONTREAL, Sept. 20, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CNI) is offering members of the media the opportunity to talk with uniformed police officers during Rail Safety Week, from September 21-27, about the importance of rail safety at crossings and the dangers of trespassing.
Members of the CN Police Service will be available for media interviews throughout the week. Providing that social distancing be respected or in a virtual manner, we invite media outlets to contact CN to arrange onsite, in studio or on air interviews. The CN media relations team is also happy to offer visual elements for on camera interviews.
CN will mark Rail Safety Week with a public awareness campaign aimed at reducing the number of collisions and trespassing-related accidents. Throughout the week, CN Police will conduct safety initiatives at commuter stations and railway crossings reminding commuters and motorists about the importance of safety at crossings and the deadly risks of trespassing on railway tracks and property.
Public Affairs and Media Relations
Brooks death prompts warning not to spread misinformation on social media – CHAT News Today
(file photo/ CHATNewsToday)
Sep 20, 2020 5:28 PM
BROOKS, AB- The death of an elderly man due to natural causes Saturday has prompted the Brooks RCMP and the City to advise residents not to spread misinformation on social media.
According to the Brooks RCMP, EMS responded to a medical distress call near the Circle K at around 8 p.m. Saturday. The death was non-criminal in nature, and RCMP were called out to assist as part of joint response–something RCMP say is typical in cases involving the deceased. But what soon followed, set off a flurry of concern from the public.
“ Unfortunately someone took photographs of the emergency vehicles and posted that on social media, and as well made comments that it was a shooting, and a male was deceased because of that shooting. So that information was totally inaccurate and inappropriate,” said Brooks RCMP Cpl. Rob Harms.
The post on Facebook which showed three RCMP cruisers was also viewed by family members of the elderly man.
India's Nobel laureate fears upsurge in child labour as pandemic shrivels economy – The Journal Pioneer
Media celebrates Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's life, legacy – Lethbridge News Now
Asus TUF Gaming RTX 3080 OC Review – TechSpot
Silver investment demand jumped 12% in 2019
Iran anticipates renewed protests amid social media shutdown
Richmond BBQ spot speaks out about coronavirus rumours Vancouver Is Awesome
- Tech15 hours ago
Sony apologizes for PS5 pre-order disaster — promises more stock soon – Tom's Guide
- Tech14 hours ago
PS5, Xbox Series X and Switch size comparison shows off just how big next-gen units are – VG247
- Tech22 hours ago
Sony says more PS5 consoles are on the way for preorder
- Science22 hours ago
A new study finds that an iceberg may not have sunk the Titanic
- Media23 hours ago
Hate-filled social media posts key to Rexdale mosque murder?
- Health23 hours ago
Health unit prepares for possible ‘twindemic’
- Business24 hours ago
Video: Woman refuses to wear mask, asked to leave Kelowna LUSH – News 1130
- Media20 hours ago
Media celebrates Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s life, legacy