It can be difficult to cover tragedies and strike a healthy balance between empathy and factual information.
Mallary Jean Tenore, executive director at Images and Voices of Hope (IVOH), explains in this article how journalists can cover tragedies with sensitivity, whilst still providing helpful information to readers.
Offer up the facts, she suggests. People need to know information has come from a trustworthy source, and they want to be able to find resources themselves too.
You should also avoid using certain terms – she recommends staying away from the cliche “time heals” and the word “closure”. Victims may be patronised by “closure”, as it suggests that they are over the tragedy, whilst they might still be accepting what happened.
Free daily newsletter
- Tip: Bookmark these tools to save your digital work
- Tip: Take note of this advice for investigating large data leaks
- Tip: Use this card game to plan which storytelling elements your project should include
- Tip: Check out this advice for editing Instagram images within the app
- Tip: Here are seven questions to ask before choosing comics journalism as a format for your story