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What are some trends in media representations of crime?

Williams found that 30% of newspapers are taken up by reports of crime.

The media over represent violent and sexual crime

The media portray victims as older and more middle class

The media exaggerate police success

The media exaggerate the risk of victimisation

The media overplay extraordinary crimes called dramatic fallacy


What features of news value guide the selection of crime stories?







Makes it more newsworthy


How does the media represent fictional crime?

Property crime is under represented whist drugs and violent crimes are over represented l.

Functional sex and violent crimes are committed by psychopathic strangers

Fictional cops always get their man

Non white underclass offenders

Tendency to show
Police as corrupt, brutal and less successful

Victims became more central and relatable.


How Might the media be a cause of crime?

There are concerns that the media has a negative effect on attitudes and values and behaviour especially on the easily influenced l.

In recent years video nasties such as rap and computer games have been criticised for encouraging violence and criminality.

There are several ways in which the media may create crime and deviance

Imitation - deviant role models result in copycat behaviour

Arousal - through viewing violent imagery

Desensitisation - through repeated viewing of violence

Transmit of knowledge of criminal techniques

Stimulating desires for good - could cause theft

Glamorising crime

Studies have shown however that media has very little negative effect on audiences

Showing how the average person loves creates relative deprivation for poor people to which they should strive, but can’t.


How might the media create moral panics?

A moral panic is an exaggerated and irrational over reaction by society to a perceived problem. However some argue whether the fear is rational or not.

The media can portray a group as a folk devil and a threat to society

Amplification spirals are created as the crime becomes more broadcast more people are more interested.


What is an example of a folk devil and moral panic?

Stanly Cohen examines how the media’s response to once minor disturbances between rival teenage groups mods and rockers created a moral panic.

This made people consider which side they were on and encouraged many to take part in the conflict.

The media inialt exaggerates a small altercation over damage between Mods and Rockers in Clacton, the media exaggerated and distorted the effect


Who do theorists view moral panics?

Functionalists view moral panics as societies relajnse to anomie created by change, the media build the collective conscience.

Neo Marxists - distracts from capitalist exploitation.

Thornton now argues that today people are more aware of media exaggeration meaning moral panics are less concerning.


How might globalisation be impacting crime?

1) The global criminal economy - Castells argues that increased interconnectivity has lead to a spread of transnational crime.

Alongside allowing existing crimes to be committed across the internet etc.
Globalisation is also leading to the growth of new types off crime.

W.g international people smuggling and drug smuggling, sex tourism terrorism.

Farmers in poorer countries now find it more profitable and easier than ever to grow drugs and transport them to the west.

Globalisation is also leading to increased risk consciousness where risk is now not attached to local area but on a global scale e.g migration crisis 2010s


What is the Marxist perspective on globalisation, capitalism and crime?

Taylor 1997 argues that globalisation has created larger inequality.

TNCS have led to poverty and unemployment in the west and poor working conditions in the rest.

Deregulation and privatisation has decrease government funding and hence reduced welfare spending.

Among the poor, greater inequality has lead to a growth of crimes as people turn to it. Deregulation decreases importance of state governments allowing it easier to find insiders and tax avoid etc.

Countries in globalisation can also have crimes of globalisation, rich counties can force democracy and social change in poorer countries.


What are some patterns of criminal organisation -

1) Glocal organisation - Little structure and individual but with global connections.

McMafia- emerged in Russia and Eastern Europe as their governments changed from communism to capitalism and markets were deregulated.

However some commodity prices were kept at soviet prices but the interocnnectivty allowed so called Oligarchs to undercut prices and large criminal networks popped up everywhere increasing capitalism.


What is green crime?

Global risk and the environment

Beck argues that Chernobyl in what is now Ukraine in 1986 had a meltdown which resulted in huge environmental impacts across Wurope as far away as Wales with huge impacts.

Climate change effects the world and doesn’t stop at national borders.


What is green criminology?

Traditional criminology argues that if pollution is against the law its should be prosecuted.

Green criminology however argues that environmental harm is green crime. Many countries benefit themselves by changing laws to allow them to harm the environment.

Primary green crimes - directly from destruction of forests etc and water or air pollution.

Secondary green crimes - flouting rules aimed to prevent or regulate environmental disasters.

State violence can exists such as with Frances secret service blowing up a greenoeace ship in 1985 protesting nuclear tests in the Pacific

Toxic water can be dumped illegally causing much harm, die to the cost many counties poorly dispose of waste.
Western countries ship waste to poor counties as laws are more leanient.


What is state crime?

State crime is illegal or deviant activities by state agencies.

The scale of state crime -

The states power allows them to commit large scale crimes without consequence, between 1975 and 1978 the Cambodian dictatorship killed 20% of the nations population without any backlash.

States have the power to avoid defining their actions as a crime

Gay marriage in the west and Saudi Arabia.


What is a case study of state crime?

Genocide in Rwanda, under Belgium control the minority Tutsi were in charge of the government after independence the majority Hutus gained power and killed 800,000 Tutsis by a state backed malitia


Some argue we should define crime as a violation of human rights.

In that sense racism, colonialism but these may only be considered to be transgressive criminology where the scope of crimes is increased since the original sociological scope of crime.