Can the media coverage of the perpetrators of attacks picture influence candidates for jihad, and push them to take action? After the attacks of Nice and Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray, the debate was revived in the French media, including by Jérôme Fenoglio, managing editor of the World published this morning an editorial in the sense .
“Following the Nice attack, we will not publish more killings of authors of the photographs, to avoid possible effects of posthumous glorification” says reporter which calls for a “number of introspection” in the french media.
a position shared and adopted by BFMTV on all media. Following the attack of Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray, the chain has decided not to publish the photograph of Adel Kermiche, accused of the murder of the father Hamel.
“Given the accumulation of attacks in France, we do not want to create a rogue’s gallery of terrorists. So we stop publishing their photo, which does not prevent a work of investigation and background on their profile and their journey. the only exception to this principle, it is the wanted notice issued by the police and can help investigators “commented Alexis Delahousse, deputy director of writing BFMTV.
Shortly after the attack on 14 July in Nice, a petition has even been launched to formally ask the CSA to control the dissemination such images. If this petition already has 70,000 signatories, the debate is however not new.
Photos that are scandal
In 2012 already, many readers and viewers were moved dissemination of photographs of Mohamed Merah, author of the killings of Toulouse and Montauban, where we saw the terrorist laughing at the wheel of his car.
Similar reactions were observed in the aftermath of the attack on 14 July in Nice, during which 84 people were killed by a truck at full speed on the English walks. The press then diffuses more “advantageous” Photo Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, author of the killing. We see the man lay on the beach and showing off his muscles in a triumphant pose.
A vision all the more shocking that at the same time, several videos showing the victims of injured or dead slaughter circulating on social networks. However, the decision not to broadcast the photographs of bombers pose several questions of funds. Several specialists jihadist question and doubt the effectiveness of such a measure in the fight against radicalization. And David Thomson, RFI journalist and author of a book on the course of several French jihadists ( The French jihadist , ed. The Arena), does not believe in a decrease in terrorist done.
A view reinforced by the fact that for several years, Daesh operates its propaganda with its own media channels. On social networks or via its QAMA agency, the terrorist organization disseminates itself, every attack almost, authors of the picture, rendering obsolete any attempt for traditional media to the “obscure”.
In addition to the problem of a possible “glorification” of terrorism arises that of the conspiracy theory. Every attack, every major event, complotistes from all sides are attacking the official version and attempt, most often misinterpreting images, to discredit the facts. How, casting a veil over the pictures of the terrorists, fight against these theories and their authors?
Should remove their names?
On 27 July, following statements of World and BFMTV, Europe 1 decided in turn to do distribute more pictures of terrorists, adding banishment to their name, a position on this unique day
. Problem: the media and the judiciary are not on the same wavelength. While in the day Tuesday the media were broadcasting the initials of one of the alleged perpetrators of the attack of Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray, prosecutor François Molins named the man killed completely on the church square.
Once the investigation is officially launched, and these elements published by the justice, what impact the non-dissemination by the media of these can have on the public, at a time when social networks transmit information often faster than traditional channels? This is the position taken by BFMTV and assistant editor Alexis Delahousse explains that “if Francois Molins gives the name, then we too.”
Once again, the conspiracy theory is not far. Regularly, the extreme right calls on Twitter authors of articles about the various facts or acts of terrorism, and in which full names are not given. Each time, the suspicion hanging over the press, accused of deliberately hide these names to hide a dimension of the particular case.