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ivoh | November 18, 2017

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New survey looks at how graphic & traumatic content affects journalists

New survey looks at how graphic & traumatic content affects journalists

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At ivoh, we talk a lot about the effect that traumatic events can have on people and communities, and the value in reporting on people’s attempts to rebuild and recover. It’s also important, though, to consider how traumatic events can affect the media practitioners covering them.

A new survey by the media news site Journalism.co.uk examined how traumatic content can impact journalists. In a piece about the survey, published this week, Alastair Reid writes:

“Throughout late August and September, Journalism.co.uk invited journalists to share their thoughts and experiences on working with traumatic [user-generated content] UGC, and how news organisations or the industry on the whole should address the issue, in an online survey.

“The survey asked respondents for their sex, age, years spent as a journalist, whether their workplace offered any support or positive reinforcement, the frequency and duration of time spent viewing graphic UGC, how it made them feel and what action they had taken.

“Of the 62 journalists who finished the survey, 47 said they felt they had been affected in some way.

“The most common effects were anxiety (20 percent of respondents), sleeplessness (15 percent) and irritability (12 percent), although 28 percent of respondents reported no or minimal effects from viewing graphic images.”

 

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The full Journalism.co.uk story is well worth the read; it has several more findings, graphics, and quotes from experts.