More Than A Label: Sir Bob Jones Versus Renae Maihi


1 min read

Dear TVNZ Editors & Headline Writers,

Thank you for changing the headline on one of your articles written by Emily Cooper. It used to be headlined:

"Sir Bob Jones to sue Maori woman who wants him stripped of his knighthood."

If we flip the personalisation, it could have read:

Pakeha Man suing Renae Maihi...

or even better for ratings:

Racist Pakeha to sue Angry Maori...

Or if we take a trip back 10 years perhaps

Sir Bob Jones defends himself against hoardes of angry Maori radicals and activists...

One person can be attributed as an actual bonafide person, another just a 'label' or a couple of labels, 'woman' and 'Maori'. Thank you for adjusting it to read:

'I won't sue her for a lot because that would seem like I'm bullying': Sir Bob Jones explains why he's suing woman who wants him stripped of knighthood

Now there is one label, 'woman'.

The TVNZ newsroom does not appear to be alone in this 'labelisation', try this search:

https://duckduckgo.com/?q=sir+bob+jones+sue&t=opera&ia=web

Or this search:

https://www.google.com/search?q=sir+bob++jones+petition

So perhaps the entire industry is striving to have less racial bias and balanced reporting in our newsrooms... however, if machines are doing the job of pushing and promoting content, we have a long way to go in covering the subtle nuances of communication.

So thanks again for getting in there and writing something a little better than the rest. Kia ora!


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