A journalist’s slip becomes a media pillory, the social drift

Cdr Tgr and Puglia: “What happened to Carlotta Balena is unacceptable and inexplicable”

A journalist makes a mistake on the air. A simple slip, she says one word for another, she’s speaking from Bari and says Umbria instead of Puglia. During the same connection, the correction arrives punctually. That’s all. The fact does not exist. But social networks, with the serious complicity of other newspapers, transform the journalist Carlotta Balena into a freak show and the fact that it doesn’t exist in a news story. With an avalanche of coarse, insipid and unacceptable comments.

It is a drift that has marked communication via social networks for some time and which is now, more and more often, being accepted and suffered even by the world of information. The race for clicks and likes is combined with the request for content that helps vent about someone else’s mistake. It is the same logic that feeds bullying and its manifestations, such as body shaming.

It happens all the time with public figures, with politicians and personalities from the entertainment world, because gaffes or ridiculous things make contacts and are liked by the reader or the viewer. In the case of a journalist who does her job, and who makes mistakes like anyone else while she’s working, the bad habit also becomes a professional injury. And that it is fed by other journalists, people who do the same job as Carlotta Balena, is unbearable.

It always is, for everyone. In the specific case, however, Carlotta’s history and curriculum also say something else. She is a journalist who has built her indisputable professionalism by doing everything by herself. The journalism school, the internships, the collaborations, the press agency and the printed paper, lots of television, the Rai competition. Not only does she work because she deserves it, but she also has so much to teach many of the phenomena, colleagues and non-colleagues, who have laughed, commented, shared, reposted non-news. To try to seduce a few more followers or just to indulge in the gossipy habit.

The words he chose to use the Usigrai Coordination of the Committees of the Tgr and Rai Puglia Committees help to close this issue: “A geographical slip has become a media pillory. What happened to my colleague from Tgr Puglia Carlotta Balena is unacceptable and inexplicable”. But they are not enough to solve the basic problem. Information must rebel against the drift of social media. Otherwise, at the next mistake, we’ll go back to being accomplices, unable to distinguish a slip of the tongue from a fault. And a good journalist from the rabble that discredits this profession. (Of Fabio Insenga)