Home > #9 > Blog #9- Lohan’s newest Low

Blog #9- Lohan’s newest Low

I found an article on cnn.com that discusses Lindsay Lohan’s recent grand theft charges. The 24-year-old actress is allegedly being charged with walking out of a store with a necklace on January 22nd, five weeks after leaving a court ordered rehab facility. The necklace was returned to the store’s owner just before police were about to execute a search warrant in Lohan’s apartment.

However instead of just absent-mindedly reading the article, I analyzed it while keeping framing, and the medias influence in mind. Journalists in the media must constantly decide which facts to include or emphasize, whom to use as sources, and what is really “the issue” in reporting a story. These choices combine to create a frame that both supports the story and defines what belongs inside, and thereby signals what news consumers should find important. Instead of focusing on the possible jail time Lohan faces or mentioning how Lohan’s assistant is also suspected of stealing the necklace, the reporter decides to frame Lohan as shallow and careless.

The way in which the reporter framed this story did not really surprise me because the entire entertainment media seems to have been doing this since Lohan first got in trouble several years ago. However, what did surprise me was how blatant the reporter was in doing so.

In the article an entire paragraph is devoted to Lohan’s physical description at the hearing today. The article states, “Lohan was smiling at times as she sat at the defense table before the arraignment. She wore a tight-fitting white knot dress, with her long blond hair loosely tied in the back. Lohan wore what appeared to be several diamond bracelets on her right arm, complemented by diamond earrings and a large diamond-filled ring on her right hand.”

Instead of giving a brief description of Lohan’s demenor, the reporter chose to go in to immense detail with what she was wearing and what kind of jewelry she had on. I thought this was interesting because in a normal trial case, what kind of clothes the defendant was wearing would not be noted, let alone reported on. Also, by describing Lohan as smiley and her dress as “tight-fitting” implies that she was wearing a somewhat risqué looking outfit sends the message that Lohan is not taking this charge seriously.

Personally, I believe that Lindsay Lohan has a lot of issues, which has led her to do many bad things in her life and should not be a role model to younger girls by any means. However, I do believe like any other US citizen she deserves to be fairly represented in court and in the media.


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