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Thursday, 18 May 2017

PICTURES, WORDS, CAPTIONS AND CORRUPTION OF MEANING

Yet again, editorial nonsense has graced the pages of a Kenyan newspaper. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then it's better for words to be banished from pictures, if the caption ruins the meaning of the picture. Of what use it is to seek to add understanding of what's happening in a picture, only to end up subtracting its overall comprehension?


That's what is apparent in the picture above, from a national paper.

It shows people in a sort of commotion, probably fighting or in a physical confrontation.

But instead of adding clarity, the explanation supplied on the side of the photo, heightens the confusion.
"Police officers protect irate women from attacking a suspected conmen..."
What is one supposed to make of this description, members of the press?

- That the women doing the attacking are the ones being protected?

- How do you even 'protect from attacking'?

- And since when is it proper to say, 'a suspected conmen'?

The competence of this sub-editor is suspect, I suspect!




2 comments:

duncan muthengi said...

It is also suspect that the English language has a word like 'non-sense'

Albert Gachiri said...

I suspect, not many people will appreciate my need to emphasize or amplify the lack of sense by compounding the word nonsense, using a stylistic device available to me, through authorial poetic license. I have duly amended the 'offensive' word. But this explanation will be said to be suspect, I suspect.