I happened to catch the first breaking news reports coming from Paris. In the following hours I flicked back and forth between Sky News and CNN. Reports were coming in that the Stade de France, restaurants and a music venue had all been attacked and the attacks were ongoing.
News began to emerge that a number of fans at a concert in the Bataclan had been killed and others had been taken hostage. Before any rescue attempt could be made both CNN and Sky News were reporting about victims trying to hide from the Islamists. All I could think of was how irresponsible were these news channels for broadcasting that the Islamists did not get everybody still trapped in the building. There were survivors trying to conceal their presence and they were phoning out for help and not to be given away by the media.
Last night both CNN and Sky News broadcast that the lead singer of rock band Eagles of Death Metal had given an interview with Vice about how Paris terrorists slaughtered fans hiding in the band’s dressing room after attacking their concert.
CNN reported how an emotional Jesse Hughes explained in an interview to VICE how "Several people hid in our dressing room and the killers were able to get in and killed every one of them, except for a kid who was hiding under my leather jacket."
CNN reported how Denis Plaud “and about 15 others hid for three hours in a small room upstairs of the theater, struggling to keep quiet. The sound of machine guns was so close it shook the walls, he said.” Here:
Scottish women Christine Tadhope and Mariesha Payne escaped with their lives by hiding in a cellar. Both women confirmed hearing the attackers talking on walkie talkies (or mobile phones?).
At one point we could hear the terrorists on their walkie talkies. We weren't sure who they were speaking to, but the two Italian guys (who were with them in the cellar) spoke French and told us they had said they had hostages and they were speaking to the police.
The accounts from Plaud, Tadhope and Mariesha above confirm that the attackers were hunting for those in hiding both upstairs and down of the Bataclan.
All media will understandably want to be first to break the news, but to broadcast in a live hostage situation that people are hiding inside from the attackers is unconscionable. It takes little imagination that the attackers might monitor the news channels to keep themselves abreast of developments. It is equally as reasonable to assume that they might be in contact with associates outside.
I find it difficult to comprehend for any professional news agency not to foresee that there reports could put people’s lives in more peril than they were already in. On this occasion the urge to break a good story seems to have prevailed over consideration of the safety of those frantically trying to save their lives by hiding from their attackers.