Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Jonah Fisher vs Julius Malema

When BBC journalist, Jonah Fisher gathered his microphone from the table of a ranting Julius Malema, he was little concerned about being thrown out of the ANC Youth Leader’s media briefing. He already had his headline.

He knew too that he would be part of the story. A story which would be covered by many others. Only question is: did he compile his headline before or after Malema gave it to him? Whichever, it was an outstanding piece of “provocative reporting”.

Previously confined to Springer type shows, provocative reporting is encroaching more and more into traditional and up to now more sober media, including print. Of course it only works if the subjects can be provoked. The tragedy is that South Africa has too many buffoons in authority and news making positions whose emotional intelligence makes them vulnerable to the technique.


  1. Very insightful!! Makes one think. One wonders at what is provoked intentionally and to what end? For the glory and 'fame'? I find that watching the interviews almost a joke these days. What must we believe? Thank you for the food for thought.

  2. I think that the comments below the youtube clip (link below) say it all.


  3. There are many examples of provocative reporting, and sometimes its downright fraudulent. Such as when a foreign anchor instructed his crew to empty and then film supermarket shelves in a Maseru supermarket during the mid 80's coup de etat, then used this film to illustrate how the SA embargo was negatively impacting on Lesotho's economy. Another, a BBC reporter, dealing with SA's white farmers bad attitude towards workers, interviews a particularly nasty ultra-rightist farmer, to cement her biased claim that he's a typical example of the country's white farmers..
    As regards the Malema debacle,.. doubt whether the journalist had any preconceived plan of action in this instance. Malema is his own worst enemy