Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Media Elitism Part 873

I thought about commenting on this yesterday when I read the story, but there were other things more important than Christine Amanpour in Egypt.

Though from her body language and attitude, she doesn't seem to think so:

The video is here.

It's interesting to see Christine Amanpour take a very standoffish, very insulting, very condescending tone towards the Egyptians on the street she's talking to. She has one hand on her hip - indicating standoffishness or aggression. The other hand is holding the mic in a lazy, inattentive manner implying that it doesn't really matter what the person has to say.

Amanpour's attitude towards the Egyptians seems to be about the same as Susan Roesgen talking to Tea Partiers. Amanpour goes in with an attitude and leaves with an attitude, and seems extra offended that she gets attitude back the whole time. Her problem doesn't stem from Egyptian hatred of the US. It stems from Egyptian hatred of her as a representative.

Robert Young Pelton in Dangerous Places 4th Edition (back before he spent all kinds of time on TV and got into internet fights with milbloggers) made a very important point about how to deal with people who dislike you for your (assumed) Western ways and their preconceived notions thereof. Talk to and with them. Amanpour talks at them.

Ask them how they feel and why they feel that way - and actually want to know the answer. Ask them what they would do if they were president. Ask them what they would do as a citizen of the US. Don't get snotty like Amanpour. Don't walk away in a huff. Don't be an asshole like Amanpour.

She can show them that she has a camera and is part of a big media outlet that hundreds of thousands of people may see - so whatever they want to say, others may hear - and people want to know. Were she to go in with a different attitude, doubtless she would get different results.

But the hand on the hip, the lazy pointing the microphone, the turning away and the general haughty attitude she projects leads me to see the Egyptian point of view quite clearly - she only gives a crap when there's trouble about for her to report.

She's a terrible representative for the US, and clearly doesn't like talking to the people on the street. Amanpour is an elitist - she has disdain for the US anyway, so she sees no reason why people would ever dislike her. She can understand an ideological hatred for the US espoused by the Muslim Brotherhood, but since she agrees with it, she can't understand why she personally is rejected by its proponents.

Basically, she's in the position of a useful idiot or of a bourgeois socialist who doesn't understand they've outlived their usefulness. She's an elitist who agrees with the hatred being spewed by MB and the general dislike of the US throughout the Middle East, since she also hates the US. She's upset and ideologically unable to understand what's going on because of her elitist status. She feels that since she's an elitist America-hater, she's not an American or related to America, so she should be exempt.

Older stuff on her anti-US bias from DeathBy1000PaperCuts.

She even ranked #8 on BigJournalism's Most Biased Journalists list.

Update: New story today opens with the terrible journey of 8 miles, making the reporter the story to begin with, but not as bad as yesterday. Of course, she's hobnobbing with the president of Egypt, so she's back with the elites. She's uses a lot of leading questions with VP Suleiman.

Also today there have been more incidents of reporters being attacked. The question here is how many of them are making themselves into the story.

ABC reporter threatened with beheading, and numerous other attacks on reporters in the video there (including CNN's Anderson Cooper getting punched). FOX reporter hospitalized... but FOX didn't report the story as a story until they were released, at least. CNN and ABC seem to be the worst at turning cameras on themselves and making their reporters the center of the story. At least it's not as bad as Geraldo Running around in Afghanistan with an ascot and a pistol claiming he'd get in a gunfight with Osama bin Laden.

No comments:

Post a Comment