Daniel Halliday
Mar 20 · Last update 20 days ago.

Why are many African people angry at media coverage of the Ethiopian plane crash?

After the crash of flight ET302 media attention was initially focused on the safety record of the Boeing 737. But criticism arose as certain media organisations began to question the safety record of the Ethiopian Airlines, and others focused purely on foreign minority nationalities that died in the disaster neglecting Ethiopian and in some cases African nationals altogether. Is media coverage of the Ethiopian Airlines crash representative of a prejudice perspective towards African nations? Is western media coverage racially prejudiced, insensitive or ill-informed when portraying African news and current affairs?
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The need for better African news coverage
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This could be an effort to obfuscate
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Mostly innocent mistakes
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Borderline racist mainstream coverage
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Lack of balanced reporting on the African continent
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The need for better African news coverage

The shocking state of coverage surrounding this story by some news media companies outlines the desperate need for the establishment of better trans-African news networks, that could present African issues in a non-prejudice professional manner. African Journalism is extremely underfunded, and as Botswana Mmegi newspaper reporter, Frederick Kebadiretse, has indicated this deficit of funds prevents papers from sending African journalists whereas foreigners are often sent and “paint somehow a different picture from the way Africans can see things happening" [1]. African’s need to be in charge of telling their own stories more clearly and fairly, with such wide spread humanitarian issues, Africa is arguably the continent that needs well funded and reliable news coverage more than any other, but sadly remains one of the most under-resourced.

[1] theguardian.com/world/2013/mar/01/african-journalism-stifled-lack-resources

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Daniel Halliday
Nov 1
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This could be an effort to obfuscate

The failure to accurately portray the news of the Ethiopian Airline disaster by some western news media outlets could be an effort, especially by news corporations with business connections to the US defence industry, to mislead their audience. Distracting their audience away from questioning the safety of the airline and depicting the disaster as more of an issue of negligence or human error, could possibly help save Boeing as a brand, which is suffering as a company since this second 737 MAX 8 crash. It is no secret that the private interests of corporate news ownership often shapes news coverage to some extent, so to distract from the wider story of the Boeing 737 technical problems that is damaging the image and share prices of Boeing as a company has become a narrative many have turned to. This has led many to feel that the narrative of this tragedy is being rerouted, this is possibly the most likely way to explain the terrible state of news coverage of this disaster.

tadias.com/03/22/2019/ethiopian-airlines-expresses-disappointment-calls-out-media-outlets-eager-to-blame-pilot sites.hks.harvard.edu/fs/mbaum/documents/BaumZhukov_MediaOwnershipAndWar-WORKINGDRAFT.pd

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Daniel Halliday
Nov 1
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Mostly innocent mistakes

The issues surrounding the news coverage of the airline crash in Ethiopia were mostly innocent mistakes as a result of American news networks broadcasting to the average American, viewers who may be ignorant of where Ethiopia and Kenya are, but Africa is somewhere they could at least comprehend. But the people of Africa are justified in their indignation as there should be more education around world geography, and the western media should not be pandering to their audience’s ignorance but educating and uplifting their audience around certain topics. The same is not seen as much in Asian current events for example, where the varied differences in culture are usually part of the story, and countries and leaders are often named separate from the continent they are in. These mistakes need addressing.

okayafrica.com/the-africa-in-the-media-report-shows-how-africans-are-misrepresented-in-american-television

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Daniel Halliday
Jun 7
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Borderline racist mainstream coverage

The international mainstream news media covered this horrible loss of life by seemingly reporting victims based on their nationalities, with little to no mention of the amount of black African lives lost. This is despite there being more Kenyan victims of this tragedy than any other nationality. Furthermore the mainstream international media's initial reaction to try and blame the accident on Ethiopian Airlines' staff negligence, despite the crash's obvious similarities with the earlier Indonesian disaster, could be construed as borderline racist news coverage.

newsone.com/3848224/ethiopian-airlines-crash-media-coverage

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Daniel Halliday
May 1
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Lack of balanced reporting on the African continent

In this case American journalists were entertaining the ideas that the pilots were to blame despite widespread information of a good Ethiopian safety record, and widespread knowledge of problems with Boeings aircraft. There was also the issue of erasure of Ethiopians and Kenyans from certain news network’s coverage despite them making up the majority of the dead on the flight, with the Associated Press tweeting naming all the minority nationalities who died on the flight. This has led many to believe that such widespread coverage of this even is due to the presence of other nationalities on board of the flight, had it just been Africans on the flight the coverage would have ended long ago. mg.co.za/article/2019-03-11-the-racist-reaction-to-the-ethiopian-airlines-crash-was-all-too-predictable twitter.com/nmamuma/status/1106904818680020992

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Daniel Halliday
Mar 20
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