New York Times Creates New Story Form for ‘Watching Syria’s War’
Watching the video is almost unbearable.
But grasping the horror of what’s happening in Syria without watching it is almost unthinkable.
“A Father’s Farewell,” posted Oct. 12 to a curation site maintained by The New York Times, appears to tell the story of a father clinging to - and praying for - a child killed during shelling in the city of Hammuria.
The post is among about 85 published by the Times on its “Watching Syria’s War” site, which the paper launched four months ago.
Videos shot by non-journalists have become an important source of information about fighting waged mostly beyond the reach of an international press corps barred from entering the country by Syrian officials.
The problem with the videos, of course, is the difficulty in verifying exactly what they show.
I’ve been researching the verification issue for a seminar in Cairo and consider myself a pretty close reader of The Times. So I was surprised when assistant managing editor Jim Roberts began describing “Watching Syria’s War” to a group of students I accompanied to the Times last month.
I’d never heard of it.