Prevention Through Awareness: Media speaking over domestic violence topic

Experts presented results of comparative analysis within the project "Prevention through awareness"

2020 3rd September, Sofia. Articles that trivialize cases of domestic violence and gender-based violence show that the media in Bulgaria do not have the right approach to this serious problem. Many of them turn such news into a sensation, making headlines and drawing conclusions based on assumptions. On the other hand, there are media like those in Norway, where there are almost no articles trivializing domestic and gender-based violence. In this country, journalists avoid sensational headlines, shocking phrases and expressions and instead, follow the cases in their entirety, seek expert opinions and refrain from personal categorizations and opinions when covering news related to domestic and gender-based violence.

This was discussed today during the second round table within the project "Prevention through awareness". The results of the meta-analysis with similarities and differences in the coverage of the topic of domestic violence and gender-based violence in the traditional media in Bulgaria and Norway were presented, in order to highlight the causes, consequences and possible approaches for gender-based violence prevention.

The largest share of articles trivializing violence in our country relate to physical violence. 60% of the articles are written in a way that presents this type of violence as something normal, following by economic violence with 69% and sexual violence with 42%. Media in Bulgaria are more inclined to cover sexual violence in detail, going through all stages, from the initial news, through the investigation to the analysis of the causes and consequences. On the other hand, cyber-violence, psychological and economic violence are almost absent as coverage, especially compared to physical and sexual violence.
The discussion gave food for thought about why the coverage of cases related to cyber-violence is low in Bulgaria, when there is enough evidence for their existence, especially among the young generation? Also, is there a problem in Bulgaria with domestic violence and gender-based violence on religious base?

This publication was created with the financial support of the Operator of the Active Citizens Fund Bulgaria under the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area. The sole responsibility for the content of this publication lies with the Intelday Foundation and under no circumstances can be taken this document to reflect the official opinion of the European Economic Area Financial Mechanism and the Operator of the Active Citizens Fund Bulgaria.