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A Critical Review of a Story In the Press - The Derek Bond story - A victim of identity theft.

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A CRITICAL REVIEW OF A STORY IN THE PRESS THE DEREK BOND STORY - A VICTIM OF IDENTITY THEFT INTRODUCTION The story I have chosen to review is about Derek Bond, a 72 year old pensioner from Bristol. Mr Bond was arrested by South African authorities, when he arrived for a family holiday with his wife in South Africa. Mr Bond was detained at the request of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, on suspicion of being one of America's most wanted criminals; the alleged crime a $4.8 million telemarketing fraud. Fortunately, for Derek Bond it was a case of mistaken identity. Eventually he was released, with the help of media intervention after a traumatic three week ordeal, locked up, in a South African prison. The story broke in a television news broadcast by the BBC six o' clock evening news, on Tuesday 25th February 2003. The story was published by the newspapers the following day, 26th February 2003. The two newspapers I have chosen to compare the story are, The Guardian, and The Daily Mirror. The Guardian is a politically left-of-centre broadsheet newspaper aimed at professional middle- class Britain. The Guardian uses formal vocabulary to report on the facts of a story it is writing about. The Guardian costs 55 pence to buy, and provides, national and international news, policy and politics section, finance, sport, theatre, art reviews, and finally human interest supplements. The Guardian offers extremely good value for money, over an average of 35 pages. ...read more.


In addition, to the footnote a cartoon caption appears next to the directional pointer, which is sarcastically laughing at the incompetence, of the FBI. Turning to page 3, the story continues and is supported by two feature articles, firstly one on the FBI, and secondly an article on how easy it is to commit identity fraud. The bold headline in 1/2" letters, "I couldn't eat, sleep or read for worry, says Briton after 20-day jail ordeal." Directly beneath the headline, a central feature colour photograph, of a tearful Mr Bond, looking physically drained and emotionally shattered. In addition, he is being comforted by his wife Audrey, who too looks shattered. The photograph is 81/2" wide and 71/2" long. The sheer size of this photograph makes the reader feel pity, and sense the anguish that Mr Bond and his family have experienced. Every picture tells a story, and in contrast to the day one photograph in The Guardian, which portrays Mr Bond as a healthy well dressed family man; the photograph on day two portrays a dishevelled Mr Bond, who has encountered a ghastly ordeal. ANALYSIS DAY TWO - THE DAILY MIRROR The story continues on page 27, along similar lines to The Guardian. Mr Bond has been released, and The Daily Mirror uses the same photograph as The Guardian, to portray a tearful, and shattered, Mr Bond. The photograph is black and white print and measures, 7" long and 5" wide. ...read more.


Moreover, "NAIL" and "SLAMMED" are examples of colloquial language, commonly used by tabloids. Furthermore, tabloids tend to use simple language and shorter sentences, to suit its readership. For example day one, eleventh paragraph states, "A photo of a man resembling Derek appears on the Interpol website." In contrast, The Guardian states, "A photograph of Sykes, also known as Bond, was circulated among law enforcement authorities around the world last march. It warns that he may be dangerous." The Guardian uses more sophisticated language, and complex words for example, superficially, extraordinary saga, furious, bespectacled, intercept, intervene, languishing, which indicates a higher readership level than, The Daily Mirror. The Daily Mirror uses typical journalistic techniques, on day three the headline "BROKE BOND," is an example of punning, alliteration word play, plosives and, an ellipsis. "THE NAME'S BOND...." Is another example of a play on words. The tone and style of The Daily Mirror, has been subjective and critical against the FBI. Furthermore, they have been sympathetic and supportive towards Mr Bond. In contrast, The Guardian is more objective and non committal until Mr Bond's release, and then they were more critical of the FBI, in addition more supportive to Mr Bond. CONCLUSION In conclusion, the educational profile of The Daily Mirror, compared to The Guardian, is considerably lower. The reason for this is simply the differential style, and use of sophisticated, and simple language, in the contents of their individual newspapers. Both newspapers have reported the same story very differently. As a reader my preference would be The Guardian; as I feel thorough investigative journalism has been undertaken, in addition it's good value for money. ...read more.

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