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Media justice: Madeleine McCann, intermediatization and "trial by media" in the British press

Greer, Chris and McLaughlin, Eugene (2012) 'Media justice: Madeleine McCann, intermediatization and "trial by media" in the British press.' Theoretical Criminology, 16 (4). 395 - 416. ISSN 1362-4806

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Abstract

Three-year-old Madeleine McCann disappeared on 3 May 2007 from a holiday apartment in Portugal. Over five years and multiple investigations that failed to solve this abducted child case, Madeleine and her parents were subject to a process of relentless ?intermediatization?. Across 24?7 news coverage, websites, documentaries, films, YouTube videos, books, magazines, music and artworks, Madeleine was a mediagenic image of innocence and a lucrative story. In contrast to Madeleine?s media sacralization, the representation of her parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, fluctuated between periods of vociferous support and prolonged and libellous ?trial by media?. This article analyses how the global intermediatization of the ?Maddie Mystery? fed into and fuelled the ?trial by media? of Kate and Gerry McCann in the UK press. Our theorization of ?trial by media? is developed and refined through considering its legal limitations in an era of ?attack journalism? and unprecedented official UK inquiries into press misconduct and criminality.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Attack journalism, intermediatization, Madeleine McCann, media justice, media sacralization, sacrilegious crimes, social media, trial by media
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology, Department of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 18 Jun 2020 14:32
Last Modified: 18 Jun 2020 15:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/27455

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