Sep 22, 2011

Want to know what’s happening? A breaking news story breakdown

Comparing four media sites' current coverage o

Pure Poison IconComparing four media sites’ current coverage of the US Supreme Court decision on whether to block Georgia from executing the quite-likely-innocent Troy Davis.

First with the news (after twitter), Crikey:

The Age:


(Still nothing on the story almost an hour later. But the trader’s sorrow clearly covers both stories.)

Troy Davis was executed at 11.08pm Washington, 1.08pm Melbourne time.

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16 thoughts on “Want to know what’s happening? A breaking news story breakdown

  1. SHV

    narc & Jules,

    There’s a saying: ‘Right-Wingers believe the right to life begins at conception and ends at birth”!

    Back on topic: I think it’s newsworthy because a) people like wheeling out death penalty stories from time to time, b) there seems to be evidence questioning his guilt, c) racist angle, and worthy of discussion here because: The Australian media travels as a pack, when one buries a story (almost always News Ltd) that the others are covering it means an agenda other than ‘newsworthiness’ is probably involved.

    Death Penalty fans hate it when asked ‘but what if it turns out they were innocent?’

  2. cck

    I’m with Eponymous etc on this.

    Though I find executions sickening, and yes, should all get media coverage, and this case was of particular note – given the widely held doubts about his guilt – but I don’t really get why has Jeremy posted this.

    The stock market crash is also a big story. Different, yes, but also a story. I’m sure there were lots of newsworthy stories breaking around the world on Thursday afternoon. Guess what? Different news organisations chose different ones to put up as #1. News didn’t run a ‘cat stuck up tree’ story instead; they didn’t run “evil black man gets what’s coming to him” story; they just ran a different story, which happens to contain news probably affecting most Australians financially.

    Using this as an opportunity to have a go at News is pretty weak I think. Especially when they are so bountiful in examples of “intellectual dishonesty” which should be exposed.

  3. narc

    Jules – that is the ultimate irony isn’t it? Pro-capital punishment folk are generally pro-life when it comes to abortion. So odd

  4. returnedman

    Why did this one get such media coverage?

    I agree with you there.

    They should ALL get such media coverage.

    And the USA should gradually be shamed into withdrawing this anachronistic, horrendous practice to such an extent that it is never, ever performed again in that country.

  5. Fran Barlow

    [I find ALL executions abhorent. Why did this one get such media coverage?]

    I agree that all executions are abhorrent, including executions of people guilty of heinous crimes, but of course, if there is some doubt about the guilt of the victim, then it is a bigger story. Equally, if one accepts that victim is innocent, it means the actual killer may well be at large.

  6. Lifesajoke

    Retruned – i was making no coment on the execution per say – just that from an Australian point of view the stockmarket was of more relevance to most people than an execution.

  7. returnedman

    the fact he just might be innocent

    “Facts”. Pfft. Facts are for sissies. Stories start here.

  8. GaryM

    “I find ALL executions abhorent. Why did this one get such media coverage?”

    Oh I don’t know, maybe the fact he just might be innocent. But hey you might be right, after all, the Yanks kill thousands of innocents don’t they?

  9. Eponymous

    Now now ReturnedMan, that might not adequately represent my POV.

    I find ALL executions abhorent. Why did this one get such media coverage?

  10. returnedman

    I agree with Jack and Epo and LaJ. The guy had it coming to him, after all. He shouldn’t have been black and near a murder scene. On the other hand, the behaviour of the stock market is no reflection whatsoever of the key financial players.

  11. Lifesajoke

    I agree with Jack and Epo on this – I would have thought a stock market crash in Australia (which affects most Australians in some way) was more important than the execution (rightly or wrongly) of one indivdual in the US (which affects – (almost) no Australians directly).

  12. Eponymous

    I am slightly with Jack; why is this execution any worse than all the others?

  13. Jack F

    At risk of playing devil’s advocate, who cares?

    Why is a US state-level legal event of strictly domestic relevance whatsoever important on an Australian news site?

    I hate news ltd as much as anyone, but this column sometimes feels like it’s taking any opportunity it can possible find to attack the organisation, regardless of the merit of the criticism. Definitely one of Crikey’s weaker blogs.

  14. jules

    The US is fucked up.

    Remember the cheering for the death penalty at the republican debate the other week?

    I’ll bet most of them are “pro life” too.

  15. Deziner

    There is a tiny link in the “Breaking News” section beside timed 1:53pm. The article is quite long, but obviously not important enough for a more prominent spot on the front page.

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