Subscription 790/year or 190/quarter

Media is a main channel for distorted reality 

Sylvi Listhaug was never made with a cross in AFK's street artwork in Bergen, as presented on TV 2 the 6. April. Where exactly is the journalist's press ethical responsibility? 


In the previous issue of Ny Tid, questions were asked about the media's lack of coverage of the media-critical exhibition Question Everything at Media City Bergen, which huser Norway's largest media companies.

AFK was one of the street artists at the head of the exhibition, which serves as a daily reminder of the media's ethical responsibility. His latest work, the media-critical painting "Making a martyr – Distraction by polarization", however, was not passed away in silence, but seemed to hit a nerve in both the people and the media.

The street artwork illustrates the mass media's focus on former Justice Minister Sylvi Listhaug.

Perhaps it was too uncomfortable for the media to cover the media-critical exhibition in their own premises. But it does not seem that it was as unpleasant to spread false information about the content of AFK's latest work.

distorting truth. The street artwork illustrates the mass media's focus on former Justice Minister Sylvi Listhaug. Dimmed in the background are textual references to central conflicts and world problems. The image's caricature of Norwegian mass media was manifested in the reactions of many of the major media companies. In the coverage of the image 6. In April, a TV2 journalist got himself through a very low-level image analysis, allowing the image elements and text that were not there.

The coverage of the picture once again underlined the message AFK wants to get in the way mass media has to go by being critical and investigative. The journalist bit the bait and was distracted by the figurative use of Listhaug, rather than seeing the overall picture and underlying message. On national television he stated that "Mein Kampf" was on Listhaug's stomach in the picture.

False claims. Shortly after TV2's coverage of the picture, AFK stated the following: «It said 'my match' which refers to Listhaug's farewell speech. In addition, they write in the case that is now online that a swastika has been painted into the picture. (They have just removed this) Both are lies, but at the same time unfortunately illustrative of how the media today distorts the truth and thus contributes to further polarization of the debate […] ».

The channel's coverage of the case is one of countless examples of the media's portrayal of a distorted reality. Why do the media continue to serve distorted narratives when they have the opportunity to face their press ethical responsibilities and cover reality in a holistic way?
Berland is a media writer and freelance journalist.

You may also like