16.08.2018 - UNESCO Office in Brasilia

Portuguese version of Terrorism and the media: a handbook for journalists

Around the world we see various actors staging violence against civilians to foster fear and suspicion of others. We see populations in many countries convinced that terrorism represents the most significant threat to their daily lives. We see political movements that take advantage of tragedy and pit citizens against each other in order to gain greater support. It is critical to reflect on how the media may be inadvertently contributing to this tense climate, and what steps should be taken to address this.

It is hoped that the contribution of this guidebook, developed with the inputs of journalists, editors and media producers, will act as a critical resource for those covering terrorist events. Not every question posed has a clear and incontestable answer, but will at least encourage self-reflection on the part of media professionals as to how they can avoid contributing to stigmatisation and division. It may also provide a basis for the creation and revision of codes of practice to ensure the above values are enshrined in the daily operations of media organizations. This guidebook is also just one step in a concerted UNESCO response to the issue of how the media covers terrorism and violent extremism. The advice and suggestions contained within intends to help journalists around the world become more aware of the various dimensions of these issues.

Author: Jean-Paul Marthoz

Brasília: UNESCO, 2018. 110 p. ISBN: 978-85-7652-219-5

Original title: Terrorism and the media: a handbook for journalists

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