When it’s too much information

Charlie Hebdo

A couple of days after the attacks at Charlie Hebdo in Paris last January, the Kouachi brothers, the 2 suspects of the attacks, tried to flee and hid into a warehouse. The manhunt was widely followed and a live stream was a available on any major TV and radio stations.

Authorities were updating the media pretty regularly with information on the situation and told reporters that someone was possibly hiding inside the warehouse. Three major news stations: TV stations France 2 and TF1 and RMC radio revealed that someone was hiding in the printing shop whereas the brothers Kouachi didn’t know there was someone in the warehouse.

It turns out that the information was true and that a man, Lilian Lepère, was inside, trying to hide from the Kouachi brothers. The Kouachis could have easly gotten this information and try to hurt Lepère or hold him as a hostage.

Nothing happened to Lepère but he is now suing the news organizations for endagering his safety.

I think this is a perfect example of publishing the news before thinking of the consequences. Every news organization wants to be first and it leads to potentially hurt people. In this case the news organizations clearly failed to take a minute and think of what they were about to announce.

Picture credit: Wikipedia Luxembourg, Jwh. Creative Commons, Some Rights Reserved.