Media coverage is vital to shaping people’s opinions on migration and the plight of refugees and asylum seekers, states EUROMED Migration IV report. In the study journalists from 17 countries examine the quality of migration media coverage from a national perspective.
The migration story seems to follow two narratives: Emotional reporting of migrants as victims and the story of numbers of migrants as threat. At first media coverage tends reflect empathy towards migrants, but in time, the tone changes to become even hostile towards migrant communities.
One key challenge is that journalists are often poorly informed about the complex nature of migration as a phenomenon. The newsrooms are also under-resourced and vulnerable to pressure, manipulation and hate speech by some political elites or social media networks.
EUROMED Migration IV is a programme financed by the European Union and implemented by International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD). The report is available here.
Picture: mediterranean sea by steve p2008, licence: CC BY 2.0