You TubeFacebookTwitterflickrGoogle plus
Tuesday, 19 March 2019 03:35 pm

Survey finds earthquake coverage ‘spot on’

Mar 2nd, 2011 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

The media has done a good job of covering the Christchurch quake judging by comments on the streets of Wellington.

One week after the 6.3 magnitude quake in Christchurch, a street poll by Whitireia Journalism students found about 70 per cent of people were happy with the coverage.

“Some of the coverage has been fantastic,” said Mel Smalley, right, who found the coverage to be “quite comprehensive.”

“It’s pretty spot on, you need to see some things, you know? I think people want to see it,” said Vulette Haines of some of the graphic images used by news media.

Amid concerns of the coverage desensitising some people, only 30% of those interviewed said that they had “switched off” or turned away from the news recently.

However some of those surveyed had switched off. “You run out of steam, coverage has been intense,” said Chris Batt, left.

John Saywell described it as “compassion burnout.”

Thirty members of the public were asked three questions: “What are your thoughts on the media coverage of the quake? Do you feel the images and video footage was too graphic? And: Do you feel like the media coverage has had a desensitising effect on you or someone you know?”

Mel Smalley (50), WCC recreation manager, Wellington.
“All in all I found coverage to be quite comprehensive, however excessive at some points. There was a good coverage of angles. Though it was sometimes invasive, like the media wasn’t thinking. I haven’t seen any graphic images surrounding the quake. Some of the coverage has been fantastic but [I’m] sick of seeing things I don’t need to know. For example hearing stories about how someone’s rabbit has survived the quake.”

Jess Wilson (22), right, operation manager, Aro Valley.
“In general, coverage of the quake was good, though somewhat repetitive.” She says some of the coverage was quite dramatic, tasteless. “I haven’t minded [images surrounding the quake] it’s good to see what’s going on. I’m not feeling desensitised to coverage of the quake. I’m working all the time so don’t really see it.”

Pedro Kundycki (55), urban designer, Seatoun.
Pedro found coverage of the quake to be thorough, though negative. “Although there’s a lot of positivity coming out of it though. It is good to see good humanitarian interest factors. The hospitality factor is fantastic. I’m curious what it’s going to look like in five to ten years, how they’re going to rebuild the city. I’m not a fan of tabloid coverage. I have no time for John Campbell after last night,” he said, referring to an interview with quake forecaster Ken Ring. “It’s becoming a bit repetitive.” He says he isn’t becoming desensitised to the quake: “I don’t want to see it on page 11 of the paper.”

Pam Phelps (50), left, retired, Jersey, Channel Islands, UK.
She did not believe it coverage had been excessive. “It would’ve been the same in the UK. We saw the same thing happened in the UK when Princess Di died. That was excessive. The images didn’t seem too graphic to Pam. “We watch in the hope of seeing survivors. Some of it was a little bit intrusive. I mean, people are grieving – there’s a line.”

Jenny Charters (40), people manager (HR), Ngaio.
Jenny found coverage to be “pretty good, continuous”. On the subject of being too graphic she says: “No, it makes it real.” Was she de-sensitised? “Not at all.”

Melissa Muno, right, business owner and student, Nelson.
“I watch TV One and felt that the focus on personal stories was unnecessary.” The images “cannot be too graphic while still being real”. She has become desensitised. “I found I could only handle 10 minutes per hour before it became too much.”

Rocio Cortes (26), jeweller, Chile
“I felt that it is bad but not as bad as they make out, as back in Chile we get 7 and 8 on the Richter Scale. The reason for the damage as New Zealand’s buildings are not strong enough for earthquakes.”

John Saywell (56), dairy farmer, Geraldine.
“They ask silly questions like ‘how do you feel?’ when someone is trapped in a building.” He feels the image of the skin hanging off of the lady’s head was too graphic.

Paul Hunt (38), left, early childhood teacher, Auckland.
Paul found that the coverage was too much and that it could make others feel desensitised. He feels the original images were a bit too graphic and looked unedited.

Isabel Kerr (19), student, Wellington.
Isabel feels Yahoo was good but some other media outlets had too much coverage. She feels it “can be more graphic” but a good representation.

John Mardanir (44), computer programmer, Miramar.
Feels it is too much about the people and not about the facts.

Ron Oliver (78), right, retiree, Brooklyn.
Ron thinks the media have done quake coverage well, and says images were not too graphic. He also says he did not think the extensive coverage was desensitising, but more that it raised awareness – “which is a good thing.”

Vulette Haines (23), student, Paraparaumu.
She says she hasn’t been watching TV, but has been following the Dominion Post, and a couple of websites. “It’s been done well. I feel New Zealand media are quite unbiased compared to some international media like Fox.” As for images she says: “It’s pretty spot on, you need to see some things. I think people want to see it.” She wasn’t at all desensitised because her whole family is in Christchurch, and when it’s so personal you can’t just ignore it.

Mollie Matich (18), student, Tawa.
“I think it’s really good that they have continuous coverage each day, but when it happened they were filming without permission – people asked them to go away but they would continue filming. Also, a lot of media are actually quite biased – you can’t really avoid it in a situation like this. This time it was just a bit too much, I sort of switched off. It’s not actually sinking in as much as it should, it seems so removed from New Zealand, in a way, even though it’s the heart of New Zealand. It’s good to see how people have banded together – that community spirit.”

Maria Teamaa (55), contract operations worker, Lyall Bay.
“[The media] kept us pretty up to date, it was everywhere you looked. Some of the questions were a bit obvious, almost as if the reporters were trying to get a specific answer.” She says the footage and images were not too graphic, because the media was simply “showing it how it is, and we got to see all the rescue people in action.” She also said she was still following the media coverage with great interest, though she did say that she had stopped reading the paper because the images were “too real” for her – not offensive, but just sad to look at.

Luke Tevita (23), right, retail worker, Island Bay.
“Some of it was quite aggressive or invasive in some parts – sometimes they went a bit too far. They would also ask really obvious questions like ‘how are you feeling?’ or something.” But graphic images somehow made it seem more real and relatable. “I’m not watching [the news] anymore. It’s too repetitive, and sort of a bit depressing.”

Mariska Deventer, homemaker, Ngaio.
Mariska found the media coverage of the earthquake was “overkill”. She didn’t think that the images being used by the media was too graphic. He says people were “desperately trying to find news” and media should just “give updates and then go on with other news”.

Graeme Hill (70), builder, Lake Hayes Otago.
Graeme thinks the media coverage has been “pretty good” The images weren’t too graphic as it is “pretty bad” and “how it is”. He wasn’t feeling desensitised as it is still happening and it “shows how much we can take.”

Simon Edmonds, left, cafe worker, Island Bay.
Media coverage is “always there” and there was a “bit too much”. He hasn’t really thought about the issue of whether the images are too graphic or not. He has an interest in politics so was wanting more information about what was happening in the rest of the world.

John Saywell (56), dairy farmer, Geraldine.
Johnn feels people crying draws people in and that the media coverage has to cover for when people come in later. Personally he didn’t have an issue with the images being too graphic. “If there was no focus on the earthquake then it would be considered insensitive.”

Paul Hunt (38), early childhood teacher, Manurewa.
Media coverage is “too much all the time”. He also said photos from the first few days weren’t edited and probably should’ve been. He hasn’t personally been desensitised but has students say “I’m so over Christchurch”.

Madeline Appelros, (19) right, part-time nanny/university student, Whitby.
There is good coverage on Yahoo and it is everywhere. She says images “could be more graphic”. John Campbell seen as “theatrical” and overdramatizes and creates emotion.

John Mardanir (44), computer consultant, Miramar.
John would prefer the media coverage to have more facts and it had too much feelings and sensationalises [news]. Images aren’t too graphic as it is what you would expect. She has become desensitised due to it constantly being on the news.

M.A Bourke left, writer, Te Aro.
She feels the media coverage is great, thorough, extensive and appropriate. She couldn’t really give an in depth answer on the graphic quantity as she hasn’t seen a lot and does not watch tv. She thought the situation was  unavoidable. She says we in Wellington are not down there so we should start to move on, although when it becomes a huge news item the way it is taken over is appropriate.

Callan Svendsen (31), student, Lower Hutt.
Callan feels media coverage is intense. “We are bombarded by images and are only seeing one side, we are not seeing the undamaged side, even though a lot is undamaged. In some respects it is too graphic. The Dominion Post graphics are strong.” He thinks it is strange seeing the photo of the baker making the front page, although he was not named. He feels to an extent, there were a lot of intense images which desensitise the scope of it.

Duncan Forbes (33) right, graphic designer, Te Aro.
“Media coverage has been decent, not over the top, although the first place I found about the quake was on Twitter.” He thinks the images are not graphic enough: “I have seen nothing graphic really from New Zealand media. The best place for images was Boston Globe and they gave caution warning regarding content.” He thought the graphics on Stuff were light in comparison. He believes we are obviously being desensitised.

Ian Schipper (34), volcanologist, France.
“There has been a lot of media coverage, but not over the top because of the magnitude.” He thinks it is sad other things have been happening and we haven’t heard about them. Ian feels graphic images have been good and is not desensitised: “I think the images have gone a long way to bringing it close to home.”

Jeremy Beaglehole (47),  salesman, Paparangi.
Jeremy thinks the media coverage is excellent, and that the graphics have been good and brings home impact of the quake. He thinks we have not at all been desensitised.

Andre Smith (24), left,  software developer, South Africa.
“From what I’ve seen we have had fairly decent coverage.” He has not seen too many images, only seen how emotionally disrupted people are and the rubble breaking down and all the buildings. He thinks because they have repeated the same things over and over again then people have became desensitised. “I think it is a matter of just seeing where it is going rather than taking an active interest in it.”

Grant Douglas (20), student, Aro Valley.
Grant says the media was very good and informing, but is getting repetitive. “The media could have summarised it in one hour blocks, the media did over do it a bit”. He didn’t think the graphics were offensive. “I was there and it was shown as it was.” In a way he thinks we are being desensitised by the media.

Chris Batt (51), builder, Christchurch.
“I am sick of hearing about it, even though the media coverage was excellent.” He thinks the graphic images are part of media. “I was not unhappy with it and I was there.” He thinks we are being desensitised: “You run out of steam, coverage has been intense.”

Bridget Chambers (19), student, Mt Cook.
She has seen a bit in the papers and on TVs in bars. “I started calling friends when it happened.” There’s been in-depth coverage but she says: “I feel separated from it. Graphic imaging has been horrifying – one wide shot photo reminded me of a nuclear bomb or something.”

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Radio News