News reports are where most people get their knowledge about specific incidents of violence against women as well as general stories about its nature and prevalence. Good reporting can play a vital role in increasing understanding of violence against women and challenging its place in our society.
On the other hand, irresponsible reporting can reinforce myths about the ‘causes’ of violence, such as
These myths confuse the issue, blowing some dangers out of proportion and reducing awareness of others, encouraging blaming of the victim and therefore deflecting attention from the perpetrator, and discouraging women from reporting violence against them.
Zero Tolerance has recently produced Handle With Care: A guide to responsible media reporting of violence against women, offering advice on various issues from interviewing survivors to providing relevant context and ensuring that violence is neither trivialised nor sensationalised.
Want to find out more? Zero Zero Tolerance have produced a briefing on the Media, including quotes and statistics.