• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

'A nation stalked by FEAR' (The Sun, 17th July 2002). What can the study of newspaper coverage of official crime statistics tell us about the problem of crime?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

'A nation stalked by FEAR' (The Sun, 17th July 2002). What can the study of newspaper coverage of official crime statistics tell us about the problem of crime? The official statistics used to determine the crime rates and the problem of crime are based on the recording by the police of notifiable offences. The media then relate these statistics to the public. By studying newspaper coverage of official crime statistics would allow the public to determine for themselves the problem of crime, but is this a true picture of crime? I will in this essay explain the complexity of studying crime statistics through media coverage by using two newspaper articles one taken from The Sun, a tabloid newspaper and the other The Guardian which is a broadsheet, they are both daily newspapers. The media can generate fear; people read about crimes that happen and take it as it may happen to them. Different newspapers word and categorise crime differently according to who is reading it. Left realists believe that in inner city areas the media's coverage of crime reinforce what people already know. The majority of people that fear crime have never experienced crime, but read about it daily in newspapers and television. ...read more.

Middle

The Guardian's attitude towards Britain being a nation fearful of crime is overlooked. The BCS states that 43% of the readers of The Sun thought crime had shot up compared to only 26% of the readers of The Guardian. By deconstructing the figures in the two articles and comparing the two. The Sun seems to be taking the stance of Stanley Cohen's 'Moral Panics' in 1964. He researched the disturbances between Mods and Rockers on Easter Bank Holiday in Clacton. The national press spoke of 'a day of terror', whereby gangs of youths destroyed a whole town, but in reality there were no gangs, the disturbances happened on the sea front not the town centre as was assumed. The press admitted that they had over-reported on the crimes that were committed, but by this time the damage had already been done. Police stepped up surveillance, more arrests were made and this in turn added to more media hype and added more concern to the public. The media distorts real events as in Cohen's moral panics because of the media the youth at the time were labelled as deviant as such they adopted labels and were deviant to suit their labels. ...read more.

Conclusion

News stories reinforce people's stereo-typical perceptions of crime that enable society to respond to the problem of crime. The statistical rates of crime increased while the real crime rates dropped. Murder is the most reported crime, yet it is the least crime committed. Over-coverage will make the public believe there is more crime than what there actually is. Crime statistics need to paint a more accurate picture of the true extent of crime reporting accurately who suffers from crime and what can be done to prevent it. Other agencies could give more accurate information regarding crime and criminal activities than the police, such as health departments, coroner's offices, hospitals and the community itself. This would allow crime to be put into perspective with what is reported. The media not only causes fear of crime it also feeds the fascination that the public have about crime. Media and crime have become intertwined. Crimes such as murderer Ian Huntley who killed 2 young girls for example, the newspapers glorified in the stories that were reported, competing against each other to get the best headlines. The media are partial to institutional restraints as such the view is taken from the stance of the media's interpretation. WORD COUNT: 2077 WORDS Sharon Ebanks T274910X TMA01 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Crime & Deviance section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Crime & Deviance essays

  1. Crime: Social construction or reality?

    Locals were irritated by the lack of business and refused to serve some of the youths. The rockers roared up and down the promenade on their motorbikes causing loud noise. Scuffles between the youths eventually broke out resulting in broken windows and vandalised beach huts.

  2. How Accurate are Official Crime Statistics?

    at times that crimes rates are high, less "trivial" crimes will be recorded, this is because it frees up officers for more "important" duties, and saves the police force extra work on things they don't see as worthwhile, furthermore officers will record crimes more, or more high profile crimes, if

  1. The purpose of crime scene investigation is to help establish what happened at the ...

    Again, when photographing, the outer part of the scene should be taking first to show the surrounding areas, then towards the crime scene itself. Wide angle photos should be used of the crime scene and surrounding areas. A good technique to use when shooting rooms is to shoot from many

  2. 'Evaluate the use and importance of official crime statistics both in the tracking of ...

    Therefore, if we do not have a clear picture from true and accurate statistics, it would appear to be futile to rely on these for the purposes of tracking crime or, indeed, in applying the measures taken against it. The 'dark figure' of crime (unrecorded crimes)

  1. Assess the right realist view that crime is the result of biological rational factors ...

    Young argues that we are now living in the stage of late modern society. Since the 1970's, instability, insecurity and exclusion have increased. De-industrialisation and the loss of unskilled manual jobs have increased unemployment and poverty, especially for young people and ethnic minorities, while many jobs are now insecure, short term or low paid.

  2. New Right Realism & New Left Realism. The realist approach to crime treats crime ...

    A great example of this can be found in the London riots of 2011. A police officer supposedly shot a man (Mark Duggan) on false intentions. A lot of the public saw this as an opportunity to fight back against this state of anomie, where a breakdown of social bonds

  1. What Does America Need to Fix the Gun Control Problem?

    The most fully articulated plan of this sort is a bill that was introduced in the Senate to coincide with the Million Mom March, would require anyone selling a handgun or semiautomatic firearm, whether a dealer or a private citizen, to provide the government with a record of sale, including the serial number.

  2. How far does Becker's account (The Outsiders 1963) of the processes underlying the selective ...

    who make and enforce the rules, to respond to the title question. As we saw earlier, the existence of a rule does not mean that it will definitely be enforced. " The city dweller minds his own business and does nothing about rule infractions unless it is his own business

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work