Ferguson: Who’s who?

Fascinating piece on how the photographers of the St Louis Post-Dispatch are dealing with the biggest story on their patch in years. It’s well worth a read. And I particularly like a comment by a Mr Forbes, one of the paper’s photographers, who gets to the nub of the problem with coverage of the past couple of nights….

Of course, with Ferguson in papers and on sites across the nation and around the world, a new problem has emerged. “There are so many more press people now,” says Forbes. “Any time a protester raises his voice, there are 30 guys getting around him to take his picture. It’s getting really ridiculous, to the point that the press is actually more of a problem.”

The number of demonstrators has dwindled in the past couple of nights – after dark in particular. But you wouldn’t know it from some of the pics or video. It means the tiny number of people intent on trouble get a disproportionate amount of coverage. Which is a shame. 

It also raises a real problem for the police, who have to work out who’s who. And there’s a very fine line between a lot of the citizen journalists out there and the demonstrators. I’m not surprised the police have struggled to make the right call. They’re doing a tough job in difficult circumstances.

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