Duncan uses the term “embedded journalism” deliberately when it comes to describing how the media worked with the police to cover the Marikana event. “In relation to earlier coverage of the invasion of Iraq, there was a tendency for journalists to travel with the Allied forces to report from the vantage point of ‘safety’. That inevitably translated into a form of reporting where news was seen through the eyes of the Allied forces, and it took an Al-Jazeera to break that pattern of reporting. I think that is what has happened with local media coverage of Marikana.”
This is not the only challenge to local media coverage of the events that unfolded at Lonmin’s mine in the North West. “What exacerbates this is the media hasn’t really taken the trouble to sufficiently give voice to the miners themselves. I think that could be attributed to in part to the class bias of the media, which tends to gravitate to sources that are more easily legitimised.”


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