Where Cameras Can't Go


by Patrick Appel

Sheila Carapico considers what the news networks miss:

The wide-angle aerial view from television cameras trained down on Tahrir Square in central Cairo is unprecedented in the history of world revolutions. ... But what television has brought to the world is only a partial reality. There is only Tahrir; the huge metropolitan expanse of Cairo and the families at home in neighborhoods are beyond the frame, oddly irrelevant. The participants in the revolution are the hundreds of thousands of demonstrators, not the equal numbers standing unpicturesque guard by night to ensure the safety of neighborhoods. TV shows a mass, not a massive group of individuals. This televised reality has become hugely controversial. 

(Photo: Traffic and pedestrians move along a bridge leading to Tahrir Square February 6, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt.)