America’s perspective and Ukraine

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By Domenico Nicosia
Edited by Steven Kapoloma

One of my daily tasks when I work at The Arizona Republic is to create a photo gallery of the top AP photos that are taken each day.

I use my basic news judgement to select photos that I think are compelling, timely and relevant. But sometimes the Associated Press does not make this easy for me.

As the situation in Ukraine picks up, I found myself wondering, “what took so long?” Not that the issue in Ukraine was taking so long, but rather why it took so long for many American media organizations to bring the issue into the forefront of their newscasts and publications.

ukraine-protest Protest in Ukraine

The issue is a grave one, but it is not new by any means. This specific conflict has been going on for months and today was the first day I saw it given significant coverage on CNN.

AC Anderson Cooper: CNN Journalist

The photos of protests showed up in AP photos months ago, but as the Winter Olympics began, they were being overpowered by photos of bobsledders and ice skaters. It became increasingly difficult to select from a wide variety of topics simply because of the influx of sports photos.

Unfortunately this is not the only example of America focusing on lighter topics when the rest of the world is focusing on a serious news story.

Take TIME magazine’s cover photos for example. An article comparing U.S. and world covers showed that on multiple occasions the magazine’s international issues feature a serious news topic and the America edition emphasized a fluff piece. time covers

I think that it is both journalists and the readers’ responsibility to demand serious news coverage of world events.

Is the rest of the world more knowledgeable regarding these events? Do American media not cover such events enough?

Please comment below with your thoughts.

3 Comments on “America’s perspective and Ukraine”

  1. The Olympics really did dominate the news for weeks. The only time I saw them reference the riots in the Ukraine were when one Ukrainian athlete dropped out of the Olympics because she didn’t want to (snowboard?) compete for a country that was working against it’s people, and then she said she was going to join the protest. It would have made a great feature story, but Channel 12 only gave it a 30s VO/SOT. How sad.

  2. Great observation Domenico. In one of our excursion at Arizona Republic, one of the Humphrey fellows asked why is it that American media houses do not cover international news? The answer we got from VP was disappointing (but may be true). He said they cover stories that people want. It means Americans do not want to know what is happening outside US. We were not satisfied. So. Is it true that Americans are not interested in international news?

    1. It is hard to determine whether or not the average American wants to read about more international news. I think that it would be a bit silly for The Arizona Republic to cover more world events because they do not have the resources. Also, if a reader were to want to read about international news, they would not generally think to look at their local paper. They would prefer to go to someplace like The New York Times.

      Then again, in Italy even the small local papers showed an interest in international news.

      Do most media in Africa cover international events even if it is a local newspaper or broadcast station?

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