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If It Bleeds, It Leads

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by

Annick Trudeau

on 8 March 2016

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Transcript of If It Bleeds, It Leads

IRU: Presentation
Argument 1
News media claims that the crime is suspected to have ties with gang related activity, but never prove it.
Argument 2
News media creates a fear of gangs and terrorists (fear mongering) by reporting crimes in a sensational manner. (If it bleeds, it leads).
Argument 3
Violent crime is featured in newscasts and in TV reports in a far greater proportion than more common offenses such as drunk driving or corporate crime.
Conclusion
News media frequently features sensational reports of violent crimes out of proportion to they’re actual rate of occurrence. This leads to people being very aware of crimes and hence being more afraid of it with the help of suspecting that crimes have ties with gang related activities, reporting crimes in a sensational manner and featuring violent crimes in newscasts and TV reports in a far greater proportion than more common offences. This attention to crime can’t help but make people afraid of it.
Thesis
News media uses violent crime stories as a type of entertainment that generates a climate of fear.
Everyone has seen media reports of terrorist attacks, gang crimes, kidnappings, murders, rapes and other violent crimes recently. Judging by these reports, one might think that the crime rates have been increasing. Quite on the contrary, crimes rates have in fact been decreasing not only in Canada but in the United States as well.
One night in 2005, a Chantal Trudeau and Alain Gariepy were killed in their house in Ste-Marthe-sur-le-lac in Quebec and when the police investigated the murder, they claimed that the murder could have ties to organized crime. The crime was committed 9 years ago and they have never found out whether or not the crime had ties to organized crime, although their family claimed that they had suspected that the pair were involved gang related activity for a while.
In October of this year, a gunman wearing a clown suit crashed the family gathering of Francisco Rafael Arellano Felix, the oldest member of the Tijuana Cartel and shot him in the head. Police suspect that the gunman was a member of a rivaling gang seeking revenge.
In June of this year, 44 alleged gang members were arrested in a drug bust in Toronto but the police have yet to confirm whether they actually were gang members or just drug dealers.
Today In the Ottawa Sun, out of 5 top news stories in the Otttawa region, 2 of them are about crimes for example:
Judge erred: Drug dealer granted new murder trial
A drug dealer convicted of a gruesome 2004 execution will have a new trial.

Ottawa's most wanted thugs still on the loose
They're violent, they're dangerous and they've managed to elude police.

“In a 2006 study of local TV news in the United States, the Project for Excellence in Journalism (PEJ) analyzed the content of 24 newscasts on one day in three cities: Houston, Texas; Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Bend, Oregon. Crime took up 42 percent of all the newscasts.” - Kasia Mychajlowycz (Ryerson Review of Journalism)
We have always been drawn to horror stories even if we don’t like them; there is just a certain aspect of it that we can’t ignore. The same goes for crime reports. We will always want to hear more about them.
"The CSI was down 28 per cent over the 10 years since 2002… federal and provincial jails, court costs and policing — climbed 23 per cent over the last decade” - CBC article, Canada’s Crime Rate Lowest Since 1972

… Christopher Schneider, an assistant professor of sociology at the University of British Columbia, explains that the news gives us stories that feed our fear and capture our attention. So we get serial killings, not drunk driving, which killed 714 people in 2009, according to the Traffic Injury
Research Foundation.” - Kasia Mychajlowycz (Ryerson Review of Journalism)

“It’s a small study, but as a report on media coverage of organized crime, commissioned by the RCMP in 2002, noted, ‘even the relationship between the media and crime/justice has not yet been thoroughly explored.’ The study found that journalism favors straightforward and violent crimes over environmental and corporate ones and concluded that the media aren’t reflecting ‘the true criminal reality of our society.’” - Kasia Mychajlowycz (Ryerson Review of Journalism)
If it bleeds, it leads
0:00-0:44
Headlines!
A True Most Horrifying Account of How a Woman Tyrannically Murdered Her Four Children and Also Killed Herself, at Weidenhausen near Eschwege in Hesse - 1551
London's Murder Count Reaches 90
- The London Post
Drawing His Gun, This Assassin Is About To Kill - New York Post
British Suicide Bombers Planned To Blow Airlines Out of The Sky - The Daily Telegraph
Violent Crime Duo Caught On Video - The Brampton Guardian
Full transcript