Media “vultures” and Mandela

About “media vultures.” Shame that bad behaviour by some media, and bad communication by those in charge, has become the story in Nelson Mandela’s fraught days.
Nelson Mandela belongs not only to his relatives. Around the world there’s a sense of held breath and tight hearts. That outpouring of care needs respecting, by acknowledging our stake in his being and keeping us posted. I’d say he chose to give himself to the world. He is not a private family man, even now.
But having been in packs of journalists, I’m also painfully aware of the ugly pack mentality – of the hyena-like quality – of media scrums and the ravenous scrabble for details. There are ways to set the tone – by having a communications plan and appointing spokesmen, by *leading,* by demanding that tabloid journalists rise to the occasion. Which would only be appropriate in the case of *our* Madiba, the leader who showed the world grace and empathy and courage..

Deborah Jones