December will be unlike any month for readers of Jamaica’s Daily Gleaner. That’s because the newspaper has announced a crime-free front page all this month, banning any stories about crime and violence from its front page – in response, it says, to reader feedback.

“Through
this decision we hope to stimulate public debate on the media’s
coverage of crime and violence,” says Editor-in-Chief Garfield
Grandison. “As a media, do we glorify dons or gangsters? Do we need to
work to change the image of dons as models of social success? We want
our readers to join the debate and put their suggestions on the table
for our consideration.”

But Grandison says the project isn’t an
attempt to reduce the newspaper’s coverage of crime and violence – the
number one concern of Jamaicans according to a recent poll – and that
coverage will remain comprehensive. It’s just that it will be
presented differently.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

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