Television journalism during terror attacks

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This article views television news coverage of ongoing terrorist attacks and their
immediate aftermath as a special genre within journalism, and describes norms connected
with the genre. The description is based on qualitative analyses of the coverage
on the major American networks in the fi rst 24 hours after the events on September
11, 2001, and on semi-structured personal interviews with 37 journalists who covered
the events for ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, MSNBC and FOX News. In accordance with legal
and moral philosopher Alf Ross, each of the norms was expressed as a directive in the
interviews and also refl ected in the journalistic practices. The described norms form
a coherent pattern if safeguarding the existing democracy and the general public
is considered to be the main purpose. A coverage based on this pattern of norms
can be compared to other forms of crisis management following attacks because it
counteracts well known symptoms of national crisis.
TidsskriftMedia, War & Conflict
Udgave nummer1
Sider (fra-til)31-49
Antal sider19
StatusUdgivet - 2008


  • 11. september 2001
  • Krisejournalistik
  • Alf Ross
  • Fjernsyn
  • Terror

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