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What is missing white woman syndrome? Why are we doing this again?

HomerJS

Lifer
Feb 6, 2002
27,951
13,794
136
A phrase coined by the late Gwen Ifill. Unbalanced nationwide media coverage when a perceived pretty white girl goes missing. We went through the same thing with the unending coverage of Natalee Holloway and Laci Peterson.

Meanwhile we've had no national coverage of the following...
Over 50 Black girls missing from New York, New Jersey, report finds (yahoo.com)

Missing Hawaiian girl
Fears for missing Hawaii girl, 6, whose adoptive parents last saw her in bed four nights ago | The Independent

Missing Asian woman
Who is Lauren Cho? Missing Woman's Media Coverage Compared to Gabby Petito Sparks Debate (msn.com)

Missing native american woman
FBI offers $10,000 reward for information on the disappearance of Native American woman - CNN

Want to know what this country cares about? See the unending coverage of Gabby Petito and thousands of Haitians on the border in Texas.
 
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Paratus

Lifer
Jun 4, 2004
15,003
8,745
146
The same thing occurred to me after seeing the coverage. I could say it gets this coverage because it'll get eyeballs watching/reading the news and that makes them money The deeper question is why is that the case or why do the powers that be at the news think that's the case.

Pretty sure I know the answer but then if I say it I'll be accused teaching CRT.
 

Commodus

Diamond Member
Oct 9, 2004
8,472
5,651
136
The obsession feels like a very odd throwback, like we're back to the Nancy Grace era where you'd hear about a missing pretty white girl every other week. It's a sad story, but this happens all the time.

They were probably just looking for a story to goose ratings, but there's also a creepy subtext to it, like people thought they'd get to have sex with Gabby if they found her alive and well.
 

HomerJS

Lifer
Feb 6, 2002
27,951
13,794
136
The same thing occurred to me after seeing the coverage. I could say it gets this coverage because it'll get eyeballs watching/reading the news and that makes them money The deeper question is why is that the case or why do the powers that be at the news think that's the case.

Pretty sure I know the answer but then if I say it I'll be accused teaching CRT.
you're getting warm
 

woolfe9998

Lifer
Apr 8, 2013
14,318
9,937
136
Gabby Petito is a trifecta for the media: white, female, attractive. That makes her the ideal victim. Ideal meaning the kind of victim they think will be a draw for views and clicks. It isn't just the white and female part though. If she had been fat or unattractive, we wouldn't have heard about the case. We can probably also add "young" to that list as well.

It should be mentioned that the ideal victim when the perpetrator is a police officer is a black person. Because the racial controversy sells.

There are racial politics involved in how the media selects its victims for coverage. Not that the media is necessarily pushing such politics. It's what they perceive as the public's interests. Because in the end, the media is a for profit business.

Rather than blame the media entirely, we should ask ourselves why we as a culture are interested in victims which fit certain stereotypes and narratives. Because the media is really just providing supply to meet our demand. And we shouldn't expect anything different from corporate media.
 

Burpo

Diamond Member
Sep 10, 2013
4,221
472
126
The question is why wouldn't a missing Asian woman or 50 missing black girls generate clicks?
For this case the attention she (Gabby) got was because she was active on Social Media. The whole trip in the van thing was for social media.


Petito herself was an aspiring van vlogger, beginning a new YouTube channel with Laundrie a month ago called Nomadic Statik, which was set to document the couple’s travels across the country in their new white van after a complicated prior trip..

Instagram, facebook, youtube, reddit, all being used for publicity.. She had 931k followers on instagram alone. When she came up missing, interest grew and spread quickly.
 
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iRONic

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2006
5,454
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^^THIS^^

"Instagram, facebook, youtube, reddit, all being used for publicity.. She had 931k followers on instagram alone. When she came up missing, interest grew and spread quickly."
 

UNCjigga

Lifer
Dec 12, 2000
23,252
5,792
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I honestly thought the hook with this story was “missing viral TikTok influencer” and not so much the “pretty white woman” angle. Media made just as big a deal over Asian woman/family dies mysteriously in Yosemite”.

I still think the real story media should be covering with Petito is how the eff her husband (who comes from money) got away with not answering questions and was able to disappear and his family hasn’t been charged with anything.
 

Homerboy

Lifer
Mar 1, 2000
29,670
3,403
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While I don't deny that all of the articles linked by the OP should be garnering headlines and clicks themselves, and that generally speaking over the years there seem to be a disproportionate amount of attention spent in missing white girls, this situation is a little different. I admit I haven't followed this all that closely, but if I recall this girl had nearly 1 million follows on Instagram or YouTube or something already so she already had a million people interested in what happened to her - and those million are going to multiply pretty quickly regardless of ethnicity.
 

purbeast0

No Lifer
Sep 13, 2001
51,207
3,848
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I have no clue wtf this whole Gabby story is about. Someone mentioned it the other day and I still have no clue what it's about.

(not saying OP isn't right, I personally just have no clue who it is)
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
67,534
4,206
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I would bet the 1% are overjoyed the American people are obsessed by race. Lost White People isn't bad either.
 

chowderhead

Platinum Member
Dec 7, 1999
2,624
237
106
While I don't deny that all of the articles linked by the OP should be garnering headlines and clicks themselves, and that generally speaking over the years there seem to be a disproportionate amount of attention spent in missing white girls, this situation is a little different. I admit I haven't followed this all that closely, but if I recall this girl had nearly 1 million follows on Instagram or YouTube or something already so she already had a million people interested in what happened to her - and those million are going to multiply pretty quickly regardless of ethnicity.
before she went missing, she had less than 1000 followers.
 

Maxima1

Diamond Member
Jan 15, 2013
3,357
660
126
The same thing occurred to me after seeing the coverage. I could say it gets this coverage because it'll get eyeballs watching/reading the news and that makes them money The deeper question is why is that the case or why do the powers that be at the news think that's the case.

Pretty sure I know the answer but then if I say it I'll be accused teaching CRT.
In liberal media, the ideal victim in police shootings is black for obvious reasons. Why is it that they don't report these minority cases then? I can give you something to think about: Do you really want them covering missing Native Americans or black people anyway? It's usually within race. I think they'd rather bury how shitty the rez is and don't want to make black men look bad.

They were probably just looking for a story to goose ratings, but there's also a creepy subtext to it, like people thought they'd get to have sex with Gabby if they found her alive and well.
Uh, what? Where does that come from?
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
85,726
9,737
126
I have no clue wtf this whole Gabby story is about. Someone mentioned it the other day and I still have no clue what it's about.

(not saying OP isn't right, I personally just have no clue who it is)
I heard about it on radio.
 

HomerJS

Lifer
Feb 6, 2002
27,951
13,794
136
In liberal media, the ideal victim in police shootings is black for obvious reasons. Why is it that they don't report these minority cases then? I can give you something to think about: Do you really want them covering missing Native Americans or black people anyway? It's usually within race. I think they'd rather bury how shitty the rez is and don't want to make black men look bad.
I don't even know where to begin with this.
 
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Juiblex

Senior member
Sep 26, 2016
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Only a racist is going to complain when someone goes missing due to the victims race.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY