Resources - Media Analysis

Media Monitoring Africa releases periodic media analysis pieces looking at current issues in the media though a human rights lens.

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MMA Adresses Sunday Times’ Misreporting of Human Trafficking

Sunday Times published “Women tells of ordeal as drug-mule slave” on January 15th, 2012, which told the story of a women who was essentially trafficked for the purpose of forced drug trafficking, which the piece failed to mention. MMA addressed this to the editor along with other ethical dilemma’s that MMA felt the piece presented. Sunday Times Public Editor Joe Latakgomo then wrote about in his editorial on Sunday February 12th, 2012.

The All Too Frequently Forgotten Form of Human Trafficking

Foreign Nationals as exotic dancers in South Africa are frequently not broadly thought of or reported on as possible victims of human trafficking. This article brings this form of trafficking to light, though MMA raises some crucial points about the issue of human trafficking that the story doesn’t go into.

The picture that became a symbol for xenophobic violence

A picture is worth a thousand words. And some of them have the power to encapsulate events and become the visual symbol for political or humanitarian situations. An example of this is the picture of Hector Pietersen being carried by his sister which became a symbol for the Sharpeville massacre. The image of a man who was set on fire that shocked South Africa and the world in the second week of the xenophobic violence has done the same for the recent xenophobic attacks. The Media Monitoring Project looks at the issues that this image raised for ethical journalism.

Intellectual Property Rights or Restrictions?

Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) pose a challenge to media in South Africa and around the world. This is not surprising, as the regulatory and legal framework surrounding IPR is also imperfect. It seems that without specialist legal knowledge on IPR, it is difficult to understand the various issues surrounding it. This research aimed to examine media coverage and consider what is not covered in regard to IPR.

Reporting on disabilities: Too little, too limited

People with disabilities constitute a considerable part of the South African population, yet coverage pertaining to people with a disability is very low and very limited in the media. In the few instances that this population groups is reported on, the coverage fails to raise the rights of the disabled and actually perpetuates societal stereotypes.

Media Monitoring in Rwanda

The Rwandan Media Monitoring Project was established by the High Council of the Press in 2003 to monitor media coverage of that year’s elections in Rwanda. The desire to monitor the media was stimulated by pending presidential and parliamentary elections and the High Council of the Press’ mission of ensuring that political parties and associations of political interest equitably share airtime in the public media. The High Council of the Press also wished to closely monitor professionalism in the Rwandan media with regard to respect of the media law and the code of ethics.

Protecting human rights in crime coverage

The 16 days of activism campaign against woman and child abuse began on the international day of elimination of violence against women on the 25th November.  In preparation for this time, one could expect that media would be creating greater awareness of gender based violence and the social consequences thereof.  However, the Daily Sun in their article on Monday 20 November 2006, page 3 not only does not address the issues, but seems to promote vigilantism.  The story, entitled “THEY RAPED IN SA’S TOUGHEST TOWNSHIP … and they paid the price!”, prominently violates the rights of two separate parties.

Media Coverage of the Budget Speech 2002

The level of coverage of the budget was overwhelming. Broadcast news was dominated by the budget and several special programmes were organised. Most of those monitored were in the form of expert analysis and discussion on the budget. In the print media some papers carried as many as 65+ articles on the budget – again many carried special budget editions with budget pullouts.

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