Media wars: African keyboard warriors lose the plot but get in on the fight

February 1 – It appears the Asian Cup isn’t the only regional tournament where journalists’ behaviour has got out of hand.

Hot on the heels of Iraqi media being banned for their reaction in Qatar to their country being knocked out of the competition, so the International Sports Press Association has condemned journalists’ “deplorable” behaviour at the Africa Cup of Nations after several far more widespread incidents including fighting and celebrating in the stands.

“Being a journalist means behaving properly, and above all, exercising restraint. Certain behaviours are simply unworthy of a profession as noble as journalism,” AIPS said Wednesday.

Many accredited reporters have been wearing their national team jerseys and vocally supporting their teams during games. An Ivorian with press credentials was filmed dancing shirtless after the team’s win on penalties over defending champions Senegal.

There have also been frequent arguments among media including between Moroccan media and South African representatives during their teams’ crunch match on Tuesday.

“Between pitched battles, attacks, invectives, it is a distressing spectacle that certain colleagues have been delivering to the world since the start of CAN 2023,” AIPS wrote.

“The media work spaces (press gallery, mixed zone, conference room) have been transformed into a boxing ring, or even simply transformed into a dancefloor or performance zone hosted by media badge holders,” it said.

Contact the writer of this story at moc.l1708872876labto1708872876ofdlr1708872876owedi1708872876sni@w1708872876ahsra1708872876w.wer1708872876dna1708872876