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German study finds complete neglect of media’s role to inform

A German study, conducted by the Hamburg Media School and the University of Leipzig, has revealed that major German publications have been promoting German government policy to present the migrant crisis to the public in a positive way.

Published: July 23, 2017, 11:57 am

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    Leipzig

    The central finding of a new study by the Otto Brenner Foundation, German newspaper Zeit reported, shows that German newspapers did not cover the refugee crisis in 2015 and 2016 with sufficient criticism and objectivity.

    By doing so, the media ignored critical issues in their coverage of the biggest refugee influx into Europe since WWII, the explosive report, available on the website of the Otto Brenner Foundation shows, adopting the “slogans of the political elite” and spreading a “euphemistic-persuasive diction” of the concept of “welcome culture”.

    In scrutinizing the thousands of articles published in Germany between February 2015 and March 2016, researchers found that major German publications failed to objectively cover the refugee crisis.

    The research found that most German mainstream newspapers such as Bild, Die Welt, the Sueddeutsche Zeitung, and the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, were actively promoting German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s refugee policy.

    More than 1.6 million migrants are estimated to have entered Europe between 2014 and 2016. From 2015 on, as a result of chancellor Merkel’s ill-conceived open-door policy, and despite an avalanche of criticism from the public, the influx continued.

    Massive rallies were held against Berlin’s policies, but the newspapers simply ignored voters by promoting the idea of a “welcome culture” in Germany, the research noted.

    The “welcome culture” has been “transfigured into a kind of magic word’ in which “the Samaritan services are voluntarily provided by the citizens, and are morally requested,” states the publication.

    The head of the research, Professor Michael Haller, expressed concern that an “identity and structural crisis” is felt in the media sector. “Many journalists have misunderstood their professional role and neglected the informative function of their media.”

    Catholics and Protestants believers in Germany meanwhile have sank to a new low in 2016 according to recently released data.

    The number of people describing themselves as Christian has dwindled, as well as the number of regular churchgoers, a worrying sign for the Christian population.

    German Catholic Cardinal Gerhard Mueller described the decline as “dramatic” not only in Germany, but also in Europe. Europe is experiencing a “process of forced de-Christianization, which goes far beyond just secularization,” Mueller told an Italian newspaper.

    He complained about the “so-called progressives, who seek victory by hunting down all so-called conservatives”.

    The Muslim faith meanwhile is thriving in Germany. According to the Pew Research Center, by 2050 one in ten Germans will be Muslim and by 2070, the global Muslim population will have far outnumbered that of Christians.

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