Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Missing the bloody point

Here follows a selection of online newspaper reports on US actor George Clooney's visit to China and Egypt - a trip he organised "to make a personal plea to Chinese and Egyptian officials to use their ties with the Sudanese government to help stop the violence [in Darfur, Sudan]."

The article (the same one, over and over) is by Associated Press writer, Lee Keath, with some help in a few by Brooke Donald. It begins, "George Clooney arrived in Egypt on Tuesday, campaigning to raise awareness about killings in Sudan's Darfur region."

Please notice where each paper chose to situate the story.

CBS News: Entertainment:

Screenshot of CBS News: Entertainment
China Daily: Entertainment: Movies:

Screenshot of China Daily: Entertainment: Movies
Guardian Unlimited: Film: News:

Screenshot of Guardian Unlimited: Film: News AP Movie News:

Screenshot of AP Movie News
And the winner of "Most Inappropriate Press Photo of All Time" goes to... USA Today:

Screenshot of an article titled George Clooney campaigns in Egypt, China; accompanying photo shows Mr Clooney in a crown and a sash which says Sexiest Man Alive

I'm thinking that a few hundred thousand dead people and a few million IDPs (internally displaced persons) trying to survive in a rapidly escalating conflict - one of our worst human tragedies of all time - probably should qualify as a serious news story.