Representation of Mahdasht Earthquake News in the Country's Press

Document Type : Applied Article


1 Assistant Professor International Inst. of Earthquake Engineering and Seismology (IIEES)

2 Researcher in Risk management research center, International Institute of Earthquake Engineering & Seismology (IIEES)

3 Assistant Professor Islamic Azad University Central Tehran Branch


Introduction: It seems it is difficult to give a comprehensive definition on environmental hazards and risks. Burton and Keith has defined them as physical elements of the environment that are harmful to humans and created by external forces superior to human power. (Smith;1392,17). Generally speaking, a comprehensive definition of risk is that it implies a serious incident, phenomenon, process, situation or activity that may be harmful to a person, population, society and environment. (Moghimi, 2014, 12) Environmental hazards become crisis, if not managed and controlled. The crisis, as defined by the World Health Organization, is a severe environmental and psychosocial disruption that goes well beyond the capacity of community acceptance )­WHO 1992).
Iran has been exposed to various dangers; one of these risks, which sometimes confronts the country with a crisis is an earthquake. Just last year, more than one hundred earthquakes higher than 4 magnitudes occurred in different parts of the country. Karaj earthquake on December 2017, perhaps was the most important earthquake in the last year. Although this earthquake did not have fatalities, it is important because of its impact on Tehran's metropolis.
Materials & Methods: In order to reduce the damages of hazards and crises, a planning is required by a variety of tools, including the media. To this end, in order to produce a suitable model in the field of news coverage, dissemination of information, and communication, the contents of six widely published newspapers including: Hamshahri, Iran, Kayhan, Shargh, Shahrvad, and Javan, have been analyzed after Mahdasht earthquake for a period of 3 days.
Results: The result shows that performance of the newspapers for, dissemination of information could not satisfy the needs of audiences. Therefore, the principle of circulation of news was inadequate and they followed the natural law approach. The use of cyberspace and social media for informing, as well as new ways of journalism, such as infographics in the press, is diminishing, and this requires more attention and action. The strategy of the newspapers in terms of calmness of society was inadequate. Most of the material of the newspapers was produced by journalists itself and the published material was without conflict, which indicates the accuracy of the published material. The approach of most newspapers was eventful and less relevant to analytical articles.


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