I welcome you to discuss this with me, because I think not. Please comment and share this post.
There is this emerging trend where international news organisations are being perceived as enemies in Africa. It may have always been so, but such perceptions are being further amplified on platforms such as blogs, social networks.
Last week, I came across an interesting article by Femke, a Dutch journalist currently residing in Nigeria. In this article, she wrote about the underwhelming scamming talent of Nigerians, the nation against which the official title for online scamming has been named – the Nigerian Prince. There is even a movie on it – 419: The Nigerian Scam (2008). I was impressed at how she demonstrated the principle of balance (albeit that this wasn’t a news report). Here is an excerpt:
Before coming to this country for the very first time, I religiously studied all known strategies of fraud and deceit. Nigeria is the kingdom of deception, I had been told…Determined not to get scammed, I prepared myself for the worst. I was not going to be one of those gullible oyinbos…How disappointed I was once I arrived in Nigeria!
This same Femke wrote another article on how she tried to cover a good story out of Nigeria for her Dutch media house (I use good for want of a better expression). It was meant to be a story that captured an average Nigerian’s thirst for good news – Nigeria had won the African Cup of Nations – at last something to smile about. When she pitched the story abroad, here was the response:
“We decided to drop the item about the Africa Cup,’ he informed me. ‘We are going with news from the US. But should there be riots, then we would like to call you anyway.”
— Martin Scott (@martinscott2010) March 1, 2013
Kenyans….we did it! Our new virtue as a country is patience! You are my number 1 heroes. International media can now go back home
— Joram Mwinamo (@Jorammwinamo) March 9, 2013
‘so naturally that media news people, frequently operating with complete integrity and goodwill, are able to convince themselves that they choose and interpret news ‘objectively’ and on the basis of professional news values’ (Herman and Chomsky 2002, 2).