“Reporting on mass shootings and other large-scale attacks and killings tests the skill of reporters and the judgment of news organizations,” writes Dart Center Executive Director Bruce Shapiro, in a recent issue of Walkley magazine.
Resources for Blog Posts, Homicide & Mass Shooting
Norway is mourning the shooting deaths of at least 68 people at a youth camp on the small island of Uoteya. The massacre came hours after a powerful explosion rocked central Oslo, killing at least eight people and blowing out most of the windows on the block where Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg works. For journalists and news managers covering the aftermath of these attacks, the Dart Center has assembled resources and tipsheets gleaned from past mass shootings, terrorist attacks and disasters.
For the Dart Center staff, the murder of four Lakewood, Washington police officers last month, and the subsequent death of the suspected killer, brought back memories. One recalled her own experience covering an officer's death as a police reporter in Los Angeles and feeling unprepared to deal with the grief of the people she was working with in the police press room — not to mention her own reactions.
Dark, cold, grey, brooding Helsinki. This was the backdrop for Violence in the Networked Society, an international conference hosted by University of Helsinki’s Communication Research Center on Nov. 6 and 7, 2009. It was a particularly poignant setting, because in 2007 and again in 2008 Finland was the site of school shootings that together left 18 students murdered. In this highly literate and socially conscious society, the sense of communal grief was profound — a national trauma.
In Baghdad, Chancellor Keesling, a 25-year-old soldier from Indianapolis, shot and killed himself. In Tehran, Neda Agha Soltan, a 26-year-old student, was shot and killed as she watched a peaceful protest.
Two very different deaths, two very different news stories, but both required context to express or arouse anything but pain and loss.
The deadliest soldier-on-soldier incident among U.S. servicemembers since the beginning of the Iraq war occurred yesterday. Sgt. John M. Russell has been charged with five counts of murder and one count of aggravated assault after opening fire upon staff at a combat stress clinic at Camp Liberty, Iraq.
Yesterday, for the 10th anniversary of the most infamous school shooting, the Dart Center published a package for student journalists and educators on covering similar incidents; today, we took a look around the web and through our archive for more.