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Don’t blame the press

Norwegian defender André Bergdølmo blaims the press for Norway’s defeat against Scotland in Wednesday’s World Cup qualifiers.

– Skottene var gode. De visste hvordan vi kom til å spille, mye takket være norsk presse. Åge (Hareide) har prøvd å holde lagoppstillingen hemmelig. Likevel får dere rede på det gjennom ulike kanaler. Og når dere trykker det, føler jeg at dere dolker landslaget i ryggen.

– Det er illojalt, sier Bergdølmo.

The national coach wanted to keep the line-up secret until the very last moment, but the Norwegian press found out and printed it. Bergdølmo means that the Scots took advantage of the information and that it was illoyal of media to reveal what they knew would damage the home team. But it is not the duty of media to censor information because it would harm the national football team.

A common term in Swedish when describing media policies regarding this issue is that journalists should be “konsekvensneutrala” which means media must be neutral to the consequenses of an article. If a story is relevant from a news perspective, the fact that one party might suffer is not reason enough to stop the article. Like in this news policy from Swedish Radio “Ekot”.

Vår grundregel är att nyhetsförmedlingen är konsekvensneutral. Att en part kan vinna eller förlora på vår publicering är inget skäl för oss att avstå. Vi sänder det som är viktigt enligt relevans- och saklighetskraven. Det är inte nyhetsförmedlarens sak att ta hänsyn till vem som gynnas eller missgynnas av en viss nyhet.

Support for the home team is great, but it’s by no means mandatory. Or maybe Bergdølmo expected the same support as the Sun gave the English team before the historic 5-1 win against Germany. The paper hired a bus with a band that went to the German team’s hotel in the middle of the night and woke them up.

PS. Never forget – what Carew does with a football, Zlatan can do with an orange.

Posted in Media & Journalism.

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