Saturday, January 21, 2012

Should a Newspaper Run a Photo of a Dead Man?

A TEENAGER ON her way to school in Connecticut saw this man, dead on the street. So she snapped a photo, which the local newspaper obtained.

Is it acceptable for the newspaper to run a photo of a dead man on the sidewalk like this? It is a rare sight - most of the time, the police or other emergency crews cover bodies so the public does not see victim (and to preserve the privacy of the victim and his/ her family).

The editor of the paper argued that it was important to run the photograph:

While publishing this photo may make some people uncomfortable, it is an undeniably powerful representation of the spate of tragedy the city is enduring. Ultimately, what’s unacceptably uncomfortable is schoolchildren having to walk past homicide victims.

What do you think?


Melanie said...

I feel that this is an inappropriate image for the newspaper and public eye. This image can be disturbing for any reader, especially a family member or friend of the victim. While explaining that children walking to school may see this sight is a good arguement, the newspaper should appeal to the majority of the public's interest, which I feel in this case would cause a lot of issues and complaints. I feel like this would cause mostly an outrage.
-Melanie Lodge

Chase Senior said...

Death is something that is a very private and sensitive issue, especially in a scene and situation like this. We see vial pictures all the time, and in this case the photo was taken from such a far distance you cant see anything disturbing. I don't feel as though this particular photo is to scenic but out of respect to the family and to place it in a newspaper is simply unacceptable.
-Chase Senior

Nenayre Keita said...

I think that although it is undeniable that there is a crime problem in this state, it is unnecessary to run a photo of an actual homicide victim. This person did not choose to be a marauder for why crime should be taken more seriously in this particular region, but unfortunately that is what became of him. I believe this image to be extremely disturbing and unsettling mainly because it is a real human being, dead, on the street. Regardless of how far away the victim appears to be it doesn't change the fact he is dead. It is unfortunate that a child had to bear witness to such a gruesome scene, and this should be a wakeup call for law enforcement nationwide. Needless to say it was a child who took the photo, but the people who made the decision to run such a photo in the press are adults. At what point will the media draw the line? Exposing a photo of a dead man would appear to be a boundary that should never be crossed; however there are those who believe otherwise. Someone really should have taken the time out to stop and think, "what if this were my relative, is the last image of them I would want to be seen?"

Milady said...

Why is it that the portrayal of a body is alright in the movies but not in real life?