advertisers, ethics, media, Michael Brown, morality, police shooting, press
The paper and internet press obtains video of someone being shot, or someone dying in tragic circumstances. In the public interest, they elect to show the video, or part of it, on their website. At the moment it is the shooting of a 12-year old boy brandishing what looked like a pistol, a while ago it was the shooting of Michael Brown. I’ve seen it on the MH-17 flight reports, any racing crash and so on. It’s the norm.
Convention appears to be that they ensure the placement of an advertisement, one that can’t be bypassed, before the video that is the source of the story.
My quandary is this – who is the sickest? The press for trying to make commercial gain from the ‘death video’, or me for trying to watch it in the first place?
The truth is we are all intrigued, interested or infatuated by death and injury, provided it isn’t our own. So it is (almost) inevitable that we would watch at least part of something like that. Maybe not you, but most people. There is also a ‘safe distance’ between us and a video of events that took place thousands of miles away.
But adverts? They aren’t an essential part of such an experience, and I must question the morality and ethics of s business that insists on trying to sell me alcohol, a car or a Sky channel on the back of a tragedy.