Saturday, June 27, 2009

Vårt Land - 6 Stories

1) De største kirken i USA og Canada (By Jan Speed) 9 April 2005
In this article, originally titled "De største kirken i USA og Canada" Jan Speed listed these churchs in the story as the largest churches in the USA and Canada. This is wrong. In fact, the information is for the largest churches in the USA and not in Canada at all. Some of types of the churches listed in the USA information do not even exist in Canada. This is an example of where the journalist just took the USA information and decided to write that these are the largest churches in not just the USA, but in Canada as well. A common habit of just lumping Canada in with the USA. On the website where Jan Speed took his information the heading show as follows: "U.S. Membership Denominational Ranking: Largest 25 Denominations/Communions" This title is from their site and it clearly says "U.S. Membership" not Canadian, so why would a Norwegian journalist decide to write that these are the largest in the USA and Canada? Why would Canada even be included in with a story about the largest 25 churches in the USA? After sending an e-mail to Jan Speed to inform him of his mistake the title and story was changed to exclude Canada. Why was Canada even added into this USA story? There is no country in North America called "USA and Canada" yet with Norwegian journalists there seem to be a high proportion of USA stories that for some strange reason include Canada when the information in the story has nothing to do with Canada. Why do some many Norwegian stories include Canada in with USA stories that have nothing to do with Canada?
2) Konkurs etter overgrep (Kjell Kvamme) 26 May 2005
In this story the journalist writes about the province of British Columbia in western Canada as "delstaten British Columbia" (the state of British Columbia). The geographic and political divisions internally in Canada are called provinces and have been called provinces in Canada since 1663 when Canada became a Royal Province of France. Canada has used the French term and system of provinces since then. Canada, like France, China, Afghanistan, and many other countries in the world have provinces. There have never been states in Canada and this of course is an American term many Norwegian journalists blindly apply to Canada provinces for some starnge reason. But since Canada is not in the USA why would the journalist use an American political terms to describe a province in Canada? What is very strange in the Norwegian media is the same problem never seems to happen when Norwegian journalists refer to the provinces in China, France, Austria, Afghanistan (and other countries with provinces) as states. This Norwegian habit seems to happen quite often with Canada for some reason? Is it because Canada is located in North America and since Mexico and USA have states, Canada must have states as well? Why do Norwegian journalists think Canada has states? After sending e-mails to the journalist that made the mistake, the story has not been corrected. In a reply from the journalist he writes: "Siden du kan lese norsk, skriver jeg svaret p� norsk. F�rst vil jeg si at det er hyggelig at du leste artikkelen, og jeg h�per du hadde utbytte av den. Det er korrekt at uttrykket provins brukes i Canada og hvis jeg skulle v�rt pinlig n�yaktig, skulle jeg brukt det ordet. Jeg har selv oppholdt meg i landet i et halv �r. Det er imidlertid 18 �r siden. Innholdsmessig er det derimot ikke noen forskjell p� provins og delstat. Aschehoug og Gyldendals leksikon gir samme definisjon p� delstat og provins: �De har en betydelig og grunnlovssikret selvstendighet i forhold til forbundet.� Derfor finner jeg ikke grunn til � korrigere �tabben�. Jeg synes heller ikke du har god grunn til � fastsl� at det er trist at basiskunnskaper om geografi ikke gjengis korrekt i en avis. Hadde dette skjedd i en canadisk avis, kunne jeg akseptert din anklage, men V�rt Land er alts� en norsk avis for et norsk publikum." He may be writing for the Norwegian public, but the point is why the double standard in the Norwegian press with Canada? Why do Norwegian news stories about provinces in Sri-Lanka, China, Afghanistan, etc. use the Norwegian word "provins" to describe them, and yet, when it comes to Canada we're told by this journalist something different? Why the different treatment towards Canada? Why does the word "provins" exsist in the Norwegian language if it is not to be used when talking about provinces? And if there is no difference in the Norwegian language, why do countries with "states" never get called provinces in the Norwegian press? It is a clear double standard or ignorance when it comes to reporting about Canada when Norwegian journalists do not respect the proper terms for Canada. Should Canadians accept having their Prime Minister called a "president" in the Norwegian press since Norwegians don't care to use the proper term? The point is, this type of lazy journalism by many Norwegian journalists does not serve the Norwegian reader well. It only helps perpetuate ignorance of the reality in Canada, justbecause some Norwegian journalists are too lazy to verify facts before they print a story.
3) Fire drept i skytedrama på skole i Canada USA og Canada - Montreal (NTB)
In this terrrible story picked up from NTB about a shooting at Dawson College (Collège d'enseignement général et professionnel) in Montréal, Canada the USA has been added into this story. This story of course has nothing to do with the USA. Why does NTB add in the USA to an all Canadian story?
4) Må blåse før start (Bjørgulv K. Bjåen) 26 September 2006
In this story the Norwegian journalist writes: "I dag brukes alkolås i privatbiler i Sverige og i stater i USA og Canada." In Canada we do not have states. The internal divisions are called provinces and territories. What this journalist has written is wrong. It should read: "I dag brukes alkolås i privatbiler i Sverige og i stater i USA og provinsene i Canada. Canada has been using the French system of provinces since 1663, when Canada became a Royal Province of France. Other countries like China, France, Afghanistan, etc. have provinces as well. Norwegian reporting about the provinces in these nations never seems to be confused with USA states, so why does this happen in the Norwegian press so often with Canada? Why would a Norwegian journalist use politcial term for Canada that is not used in Canada?
5) Roger D. Kornberg fikk nobelprisen i kjemi (By NTB) 4 October 2006
In this story by NTB Canada is added into the story. This story is about two Americans and their Nobel prize from Sweden has nothing to do with Canada. Canada is added in by NTB for some strange reason. The original AFP and Reuters stories do not included Canada.
6) Fjerner pikant skilt (By Vårt Land ) 22 January 2008
In this story Vårt Land writes: "En kirke i USA var ikke oppmerksom på skiltets doble betydning." Wong country. The Heart Lake United Church mentioned in this story is located in the city of Brampton in the Canadian province of Ontario in the country of Canada. This story is an excellent example of how a guess or an assumption is made about the location on Ontario in Canada. The Canadian province of Ontario is 1,076,395 sq. km in size (almost three times the size of Norway) and somehow this is identified as being located in the USA. Even though the source ( that is quoted on the Vårt Land story clearly states the news story is from Canada: "Church strips saucy sign Toronto Star, Canada Jan. 18, 2008 Pam Douglas." The Norwegian reporter from Vårt Land still reports that it is a curch in the USA!

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