A young volunteer being kidnapped and then freed. Polemics around the ransom. And a disgusting definition of journalism. The perfect mix to stay away from the news.

Silvia Romano

On May 9th, Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced that Silvia Romano had been freed from the terrorists who were keeping her prisoner.

The story of Silvia Romano is a big thing in Italy. She was kidnapped in Kenya in November 2018, at the age of 23, while volunteering for an Italy-based NGO. From that moment on, Italian authorities have been trying to find and free her.

Journalists and institutions — especially…

If you’re striving to get your pandemic-free news, you’ve just found your place.

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The last four weeks have been particularly tough. Daily life in Italy -the country I live in at the moment - has significantly changed since the Government passed the emergency decrees that resulted in a complete lockdown. Most of the countries in the world are on the same boat.

Although we uninterruptedly talk about how our habits are being shaken by the lockdown, one of the aspects we usually underestimate is our mental health.

As a journalist, I find it a bit frustrating. Especially, I think that…

I’ve asked my friends where their worries stem from. It turned out that the news plays a big role in determining our fear, anxiety and panic. This is what they’re doing to get rid of it.

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In Italy, the country I’m from and I currently live in, people are living under a condition of complete lockdown. It’s absurd how quickly things turned into a sci-fi movie scenario.

We have been forced to change our everyday life deeply. We had to dismantle our social life, we can’t go for a walk, we can’t meet anyone. We can’t leave our places. …

A short guide to find your way in life-or-death editorial decisions.

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I come from a place where suicide rate is relatively low. Before being in my 20s, I had never heard of anyone close to me who committed suicide. I barely knew anyone who was in treatment and often visited a specialist.

As a teenager, I thought that psychologists were for crazy or weak people. “It’s something I will never need” I used to believe.

Then I saw everything first-hand.

I saw strong and driven people falling and striving to stand up again. I saw contingencies destroying stable and calm…

News sites depend on social networks. What if private organizations don’t like your stories?

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On October 16th, a Milan-based magazine called The Submarine reported about a local Facebook page that had been shut down by the social network for terrorism reasons. The page was in support of Kurdish people against the Turkish invasion, and the article presented the ban as an act of censorship operated by Facebook against pro-Kurdish movements and opinions.

The morning after the piece came out, the team in The Submarine’s newsroom found out that their Facebook page circulation was sinking.

Although they have been repeatedly trying…

How to get rid of framing and biases thanks to a brand new narrative

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Imagine that you’re leaving for a two-week holiday to some exotic place, Polynesia or maybe Hawaii. It’s something you’ll wish to tell your friends about, right? So, you bring a notebook and a pen with you and plan not to miss a single moment of your long-desired journey.

But now imagine that, as soon as you leave, the notebook turns out to have just one single page. Now you need to select the things you’ll write down. Disappointing, isn’t it?

Well, believe it or not, this…

Being objective and unbiased has always been key to journalism. But is it still true nowadays?

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When I talk to my friends (most of them aren’t journalists, luckily), they often ask me why media are often very biased and don’t even feel ashamed of the trash they put online.

As I often say, I don’t have a silver bullet for big issues, but I also believe that a healthy discussion can help find the right path to follow.

Personally, I’d start by pointing out a difference between being objective and unbiased.

The objectivity norm.

Sooner or later, every journalism student…

A short guide to a more immersive narrative.

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When I was at school, one of my teachers asked my classmates and I to write a journalistic piece to understand how the media works. The piece was part of a bigger project aimed at letting us get a glimpse of how non-classical school-like texts should be written.

Before giving us the assignment, she introduced us to some of journalism’s key elements such as doublechecking and interviews. …

Weird, I know. But I swear it works.

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A few months ago, I was sitting in a sushi restaurant in Rome with an old friend of mine when she asked me why media are being so unreliable lately. “Well“– I replied — “it’s a mix of factors, I believe. But if you’re really eager to understand it, start thinking about the salmon nigiri you’re eating right now.”

A question of access.

First, it’s a matter of market barriers. Before the Internet came, people could only get information from newspapers. They were able to choose the kind of newspaper based on…

A short guide to understand why you’re feeling so uninformed.

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A few weeks ago, Italian institutions have passed a new law on children being accidentally abandoned in cars. The new law forces family with young children to provide their cars with devices able to perceive unusual presences of human beings and sends an alert to an app parents are supposed to download.

And at this point you might be wondering why this story ended up in a blog committed to journalism, media and their vices and prejudices.

Well, I strongly believe this law and the whole discussion about it is a direct consequence of the problems we’re going through in…

Gabriele Cruciata

Born in Rome in 1994, passionate about journalism and carbonara since then. Correspondent and Community Editor at Slow News: good, clean and fair reporting.

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