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----- Original Message -----
From: Keith Henson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> At 02:50 PM 17/01/02 +0000, Vincent Campbell <email@example.com>
> > The reason it is largely rejected by much of the media studies
> >community is that it infers a level of media power of audiences that has
> >been demonstrated by much other research to not exist. It suggests that
> >media coverage that made people go out and commit suicide (or in other
> >Phillips' studies commit transport accidents, which also apparently rise
> >after media reports), yet studies on a range of other behaviours-
> >notably, voting behaviour- have shown this kind of influence does not
> >Why some social phenomena appear to occur more frequently after media
> >coverage is not known, but what is pretty widely accepted, in my field at
> >any rate, is that it is not a product of direct media power.
> I don't see where the objection is. Because media has been demonstrated
> not to have power over people's minds in on some areas does not imply that
> it lacks this power in other areas.
> Even if it were an ethically permitted thing to do, how could you devise a
> test for media inducing a higher suicide incidence?
I agree with Vincent here. We had this discussion before, though !
But that is not to say new insights can 't be found.
If the media is to blame for the higher suicide rates in my country by
committing itself showing/ giving pictures/ comments about his things,
can we than say that the 11/ 9 case is the one which have started it all !?
11/ 9, the boy who crashed into the building in Tampa, the 2 girls in
Brussels, the boy in Ghent, the family man and the man who murdered
his family are than all connected, in a straight line.
And many other cases in many different countries can be add.
Is the US media to blame for the fact that the man mudered his 5 children !?
This is a holistic view, a butterfly in the Amazone area can produce a storm
IMO, the media only works as a catalyst.
Not showing, giving no comments equals a loss in income and viewer-
rates. It is hard competitive world !
On the other hand, I said this before, in Holland the media coverage of
suicides is restricted, not by law, but by a deonthological code within
the media. Investigations into the field acknowledged the fact that broad-
casting more and more details about suicide was the last drop people
needed to do the same. The media have giving them, in a sense, the
consolidation that suicide is the answer, because otther people did the
same with a good result. That is, the situation wherein those people were,
was complety hopeless. There was noone, nothing where they could turn
to. Suicide, in a way, brings out their problems into the middle of the
If people; neighbours most of the time, say, they did know nothing about
the problems, means that already the suicide- mechanism is in place.
Detecting the signs is the key, but in our community of individualism that
is not a picnic.
The objection to the fact that the media would be responsible for the
higher suicide rates can be dismantles by the next,
In Belgium a lot of young people die in what is called weekend traffic-
accidents. Along straight, empty roads young people crash into trees
and lighting poles. The media does give this mush attention, although
it seems that many of these accidents are in fact suicides.
Not yet one institute did blame the media for the fact that these accidents
still occur. Each weekend 7 to 10 people die in traffic for reasons not
yet fully explained, but the rate does not increase, media coverage or
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