Photojounalism and their desire to make profit often crosses boundaries

Washington Post gave prominent display to images of death caused by the earthquake in January 12th, 2010 in Haiti.
Even though journalism is about letting the public know what is happening, there is a line that should not be crossed. Photojournalists going to poor countries such as Haiti and taking photos of corpses should be considered an invasion of privacy. The excuse is to have the world informed. Unfortunately, most of the time these photojournalists care more about getting the image that calls the most of the public’s attention to their respective publishing companies than they care about the victims. The more viewers attracted, the more the company sells. A newspaper’s role is to inform, but the newspapers’ business is to sell. From the photojournalist perspective, he/she is getting paid for getting the picture that attracts more viewers; additionally the photojournalist has in mind how to win a prize. Sometimes, they do not care about the tragedy because that tragedy could become a benefit for them.
Any extreme is bad; to censor a tragedy is wrong. People want to stay informed; however, going too far showing someone else’s pain is wrong too. The true professional journalist must have a balance between how to inform the public and how to respect someone else’s privacy. What is the purpose of the photo being published? An example of this is Kevin Carter, who won a Pulitzer price in 1994 for his photograph of a “Vulture Stalking a Child” calling attention to the famine in Sudan. In the photo, a starving toddler on the way to a feeding center is being stalked by a vulture. Carter was questioned for not helping the little girl.
In Carter’s photograph published in the New York Times, and in Carol Guzy’s photo of a girl who was killed in the Haiti’s earthquake published in The Washington Post we see a common denominator: a country wounded by a tragedy and living in poverty. On the other hand, we also see a main publishing company looking to attract more viewers.

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