Its official: You are 77 times more likely to hear bad news about Cuba than good news.
Researchers at a top US university have undertaken a study of how the international media cover news relating to Cuba and have concluded that the international media are 77 times more likely to run a negative news story about Cuba than to run a positive one.
The researchers took a snapshot of a 6 week timeframe centred on March 2010 and analysed every news story that mentioned Cuba in that period.
During that time Cuba had announced the largest per-capita donation of aid to Haiti of any county in the world at an international donors conference organised by the United Nations. The Cuban donation eclipsed that of every other country except the USA who’s figures are distorted by the fact that they include the cost of stationing 10,000 US troops on Haitian soil. Indeed, excluding the USA, Cuba’s assistance to Haiti exceeds the total pledged from all the G8 countries put together.
Only one international newspaper mentioned the Cuban aid: the Miami Herald and then only in relation to the unprecedented fact that a meeting had taken place between US and Cuban officials about the coordination of aid to Haiti.
At the same time, one violent and unstable Cuban prisoner with multiple convictions for what in this country is called grievous bodily harm (GBH) took his own life by starving himself to death. 77 international news organisations including the Irish Times reported this story. Not one of them reported that the prisoner was jailed for splitting someone’s skull open with a machete, preferring instead to link the story to unrelated issues of human rights and freedom of expression.
Amplifying the bias, in the same period, not a single Irish domestic newspaper, radio station or TV service carried news of Cuban aid to Haiti.
The fully documented report can be downloaded from: