The Press and its continuing role in enabling

I wish to comment on coverage of mass shooting events Being involved in Law Enforcement for over 40 years as an Officer, SWAT Officer, SR Commander and Sr Project Manager in Public Safety Communications I have a base of knowledge from where I speak. I have seen in some instances where Law Enforcement officials make their initial commentary on the incident and then advise that they will no longer comment on the Offender; mention their name again. My observations of coverage on these incidents really verifies that the adage “if it bleeds, it leads” appears to be the prime driver of reporting. But the mantra over a minimum of 3-4 days has become far more that; and I fear that it is NOT recognized by the policy makers of ALL news organizations. Has any thought ever been given that the probing analysis of all of the offenders motives and moves, and the diagnostics of the NOW EVER-PRESENT “manifesto” (seems they all have one now, don’t they) have become fully ,in effect, a video training manual for the next offender, as well as the incentive to said next offender to “beat the score” of this weeks 15 minute of fame candidate. Make no mistake reader, just as ISIS and other terrorist organizations watch and learn about tactics and tactical planning to defeat them, so to do these offenders. I feel that all news organizations, while trying to provide great, in-depth coverage and transparency (another buzz word I frown upon) play an unintentional roll in the instigation and incentivizing of these next offenders. Please consider down-playing the coverage about these offenders. Do not provide a vehicle by which they ride into infamy. They want to be remembered; deny them. Cover and Honor the survivors, families and first responders…but BRIEFLY. They don’t want to be in the camera in their grief and mourning. And we, in the public, we do not want to be in their face. Stop this. I seriously doubt Cronkite, Murrow, and the other senior fellows of journalism would agree with the methodologies we currently see followed after these events. Thank you for allowing me to provide my commentary “2 cents”.


Welcome to the conversation. Excellent post.

I agree about not naming the perp other than to say we know who it is and are investigating, Period !! Never give them the fame they so hungrily desire. Seems too often to create copy cat events with others seeking their fame or infamy…

The media does one thing, sensationalize these shootings in order to bump up their ratings, they rarely report 100% truth, I wish the news was like it was long ago, keep the public informed when they had verified facts to distribute.

Welcome @Paul37 and well said. The advances in all technology work against us. In light of the call for waiting periods for firearms maybe the same should ring true of the media. If they could not report until all of their facts were corroborated and had a 24 hour to two week waiting period, the infamy of the event would disappear. And if all news were in print, instead of talking heads, most wouldn’t (or couldn’t) read it.