A picture is worth a thousand words, right? So why are people so offended by what news organizations run as photos? We have all been shocked by something we see in a newspaper, or something we see on the news. Some of us respect the decisions to show the image, and some of us think it is immoral and wrong.
I personally believe that photos should be used to tell a story and evoke a change or thought. When words cannot describe how horrific or wonderful an event is, a picture shows us. In “Annual Editions: Mass Media- 12/13” it talks about the earthquake in Haiti and the images used by news organizations after the horrendous natural disaster occurred. As Americans we have never seen destruction like that, we cannot grasp the concept of what that would be like. The book states “The more images of unimaginable suffering were published, the more international aid poured in.” The photos of dead children, bloody victims, and screaming Haitians in the loss of there beloved evoked change.
I think citizens forget that newsrooms (whether print or television) work as a team. When a photo or footage can be taken in a risqué way, the newsrooms know. They’re not dumb. Intense conversations go into if the images should run and a reason is always reached.
One point that I think is important to make is that you can express in words, whether in a script for news or in a description of the picture, why you are running the image. We are humans. We can, indeed, show emotions. Editors could put something like “This image may be hard to view, but it shows the magnitude of destruction this earthquake has caused on the people of Haiti.”
We live in a world of technology and social media where photos are shared, stored, liked, commented on and thrown around like it’s nothing. I think this is a positive way of sharing the ways of lives from all over the world. It increases a sense of connection and truly shows us, as people, what is like for others during the best and worst times.