Ponderance

(May 2003 - March 2007.) Tama's thoughts on the blogosphere, podcasting, popular culture, digital media and citizen journalism posted from a laptop computer somewhere in Perth's isolated, miniature, urban jungle ...

Thursday, May 13, 2004
Internet Wars & Annoying Journalism

It has been mentioned elsewhere that the current US occupation of Iraq is the first (or at least most obvious) war/conflict/occupation to be fought, at least in part, using the Internet. The images taken by 'regular' US military personnel with their digital cameras and distributed across the globe via the Net have rocked the US and the world specifically because these are images were taken by 'ordinary soldiers', but doing extraordinarily cruel things. The recent retaliation in the form of an Internet distributed digital video of a US hostage being executed by Iraqi militants shows that both sides are using the web as a battlefield. However, when I read today's The Australian, the reporting of this new video was presented under the following title :"US captive beheaded on internet". Why is it that journalists insist on positing the Internet as a place? Why does it sound like Iraqi militia members lived online and kill people in pixels? Isn't there enough going on in the world that The Australian could spend five minutes more thinking up titles so they didn't misrepresent the Net? Of course, that annoyance aside, the whole Internet War phenomenon is fascinating (in a perverse and disturbing what is terms of what's being distributed), but also shows perhaps a new realisation of the Net's usability.

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