Mark Steyn blasts media and many outlets cower in the face of terrorism

Mark Steyn wishes that the media would try at least to find their testicles.

The Sunday Star-Times gets a dishonourable mention in the segment.

We saw yesterday the cowardice of the NZ Herald in publishing only those Charlie Hebdo cartoons that offend politicians, Christians and Jews, but not a single one that might offend a muslim.

David Farrar found his courage though, which puts the New Zealand media to shame, and this same attitude seems to prevail worldwide where legacy media lack courage and new media exhibit it in spades.

With few exceptions, it has been digital outlets like The Huffington Post, The Daily Beast, Business Insider, BuzzFeed, Vox, and Slate that have exercised their constitutional right by republishing the cartoons that are thought to be the basis for the attacks. In contrast, many “legacy” organizations, from CNN, to The Washington Post, to The New York Times, largely withheld the images. In explaining its decision not to distribute any of the images, the AP’s spokesman, Paul Colford, was quoted as saying, “It’s been our policy for years that we refrain from moving deliberately provocative images.” Bloomberg, meanwhile, published a slideshow that included many of the incendiary covers. 

Whether the decision to show the photos was a pure display of solidarity for fallen comrades, a play for page views, a reflection of persistent differences in editorial culture between “legacy” and digital-native outlets, or a combination of the above, is impossible to know. But one way or another, the outcome is praiseworthy.

As Daily Beast editor Noah Shachtman sees it, the decision not to publish, on the other hand, is deplorable. “For the media organizations that decide to cut these pictures or blur them out, I just find that to be reprehensible,” Shachtman said. “It’s hard to interpret that as anything but giving in to the monsters that just massacred a bunch of people.” The Daily Beast re-posted an updated gallery of cartoons originally published in 2011, under the headline “16 Most ‘Shocking’ Charlie Hebdo Covers.”

Washington Post media columnist Erik Wemple seemed to agree with Shachtman, in criticizing CNN for saying that it was continuing to consider whether or not to publish the cartoons hours after the event (for the moment, it appears to have decided not to). “Those conversations shouldn’t take so long,” Wemple wrote. “Show it all, whatever the consequences.”

We must never give in to terrorists.

Anyone who caves to terror enables the terror.

This issue may well be the bell wether issue that proves once and for all that the old legacy media are morally bankrupt, cowards and nothing more than corporate sellouts who are simply seeking page-views without actually making a proper stand (hoping to hoodwink the public along the way into thinking they are heroes of free speech when the reality is they are shirking and censoring), and that it is new media carrying on the roles of speaking truth to power, not just against corporates, politicians and government but also those who seek to impose their will by force on the free world.

 

– Columbia Journalism Review


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.

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