Orlando: When Media Learned Killer’s Ethnicity, Then They Knew to Call It ‘Terrorism’

Rise Up Times

There was no move to label the event as such by mainstream media sources until the shooter’s ethnicity was revealed—at which point the language began to change.

By Eoin Higgins  FAIR  June 15, 2016

News coverage over the past 48 hours of the Orlando nightclub attacks has shown how corporate media use specific vocabulary to manipulate public perceptions and perpetuate harmful stereotypes and xenophobia.

ABC News tweet on Orlando

Typical news media tweet before shooter’s ethnicity known

In the early hours of June 12, as reports poured in about a shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, news outlets were reluctant to characterize the incident beyond calling it an act of violence.

With little information beyond “a shooting has left a number of people of dead in a nightclub,” the Twitter accounts of major media outlets used the contextually neutral language of “shooting” to describe the situation:

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