Singapore Newspaper Published Photo of Dead Bodies: Unethical or Truthful?

When should graphic photos be published?

In Page 2 of today’s (15 January 2016) edition of the TODAY newspaper which is owned by mediacorp, a photo of a few dead bodies lying on the road in Jakarta were published.

TODAY newspaper photo of dead bodies
TODAY newspaper photo of dead bodies


It was not mentioned whether these bodies belonged to any of the 5 attackers, or the body of innocents, a police officer and a Canadian man.

With clothes thrown off, limbs and heads at strange angles, no pixellation was used to mask the faces or bodies of these deceased.

Perhaps the newspaper aimed to use shock to drive home the reality of terrorism and how it does not distinguish between guilty or innocent, young or old.

Last year, photos of a drowned Syrian toddler went viral. CNN published these photos with a warning that there were graphic images ahead. Photos from the first spottings of floating dead bodies from flight MH17 circulated widely on twitter, causing much consternation from many people who were not prepared to accidentally come across the graphic images and could not un-see them.

Do you think it is unethical to publish such graphic images, or should newspapers go ahead if it their first priority is to report the truths of the world?

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