'Dramatic news reports about Queensland's "youth crime wave" are not backed by
actual crime data, researchers have found.
University of Queensland researcher Renee Zahnow says social media is making
residents feel their suburb is becoming less safe.
But monthly figures from the Queensland Police Service show that over the past
20 years, crime rates have decreased for nearly all categories.
Dr Zahnow said fears of young people on social media were amplified and
legitimised by traditional media in a feedback loop.
She said this led to growing calls for harsher penalties for youth offenders,
even though there was no evidence it would actually reduce the long-term crime
"Sensationalist reporting may sell papers, but it's not appropriate for
bringing communities together," Dr Zahnow said.'
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics