Karen Attiah, the Washington Post's Opinions deputy digital editor, wrote Friday for the Post:
"In the past few days or so, I've seen a deluge of headlines very similar to the above. As someone who is both a journalist and a person with direct roots on the African continent, I understand the sentiment behind the headlines. Western media have a long and torrid history of treating Africa as a diseased, dirty and violent place in stories about the continent.
"Let's be honest: Sometimes Western journalists manage the spectacular feat of erasing African people from stories about Africa. Remember when '60 Minutes' went to Liberia to report on Ebola efforts and failed to interview a single Liberian on camera? Its report was prime example of what journalist Howard French calls 'Africa without Africans.'
"So this is not to absolve any journalist in the West reporting or writing on the continent of their duty to tell balanced and accurate stories. That said, in the wake of the Baga massacre, my current anger isn't toward ABC or CNN. My frustration is directed squarely at Nigeria's capital, Abuja.
"We should all be infinitely more incensed by the Nigerian leadership's lack of political will to come up with a comprehensive solution to Boko Haram's murderous assault on Nigerian citizens than about whether a major U.S network has temporarily helicoptered its crew into the country. . . ."
- 'Tope Oriola, Premium Times, Nigeria: Why the Media Ignores Boko Haram's Atrocities
"The image is striking: A stone-faced African-American woman in a spotless maid's uniform cradles a white toddler while a stylishly dressed white woman sits nearby. Gordon Parks took the picture at the Atlanta airport in the spring of 1956,"James Estrin wrote Monday for the New York Times "Lens" blog.
Estrin also wrote, "We at Lens keep returning to this intriguing photo, which raises questions about race, class and relationships between women in the Jim Crow South. And every time we look at this rare color image, we want to know much more about these women.
"So we are turning to you, dear readers, to help unravel this mystery. We particularly ask those of you who like history and research, as well as those who are just plain nosy, to help us crowd-source the stories of the people in this photo. Let's use the comments section of this post to share what we find out and help each other in our joint search. You can also e-mail us at lensnytimes (at) gmail.com. . . ."
The Times had published 104 comments by Friday.
- Eliza Berman, Time: A Lost Story of Segregated America From LIFE’s First Black Photographer