We are a small group called the Media Monitoring Group of Finland, represented by people from different minority backgrounds. Today we published our first report in English and Finnish. Has media coverage of “youth gangs” and the security guards scandal been fair? In our opinion, coverage has been problematic. Please read the report and see
Search Results for: youth gang
Finland’s youth gang story is a close relative to the USA stolen election lie story
Looking at the number of stories written about the so-called youth gang problem in Finland, it is interesting to note that reporting of the issue by Yle doubled compared with the eight months of the year. Stories about Sweden’s youth gang problem started to pick up in the fall after Sweden’s 11 September parliamentary election.
Media Monitoring Group of Finland : Finland’s “youth gang problem” is Finland’s denied “racism problem”
The youth gang “problem” in Finland is a knee-jerk racist reaction. On and off, we have read about our youth gang “problem” with sensationalist headlines from newspapers that should know better. Remember back in 2014, when radical-right Perussuomalaiset (PS)* MP Tom Packalén created quite a stir when he claimed that a youth gang in East
“Youth gang violence” is a political stunt based on lies
I would go as far as to predict that after the election in April, the youth gang issue will disappear. It was the case in Oulu when Finland became hysterical about sexual assaults committed by migrants. We’re in the same situation today. True, we have to address social problems with good social policy. Fortunately, Finland
Migrant Tales Media Monitoring: Framing youth gang violence by MTV
When the media speaks of youth gang violence, it usually spikes it with provocative adjectives and fear-mongering. MTV’s interview and good comments by Elina Pekkarinen, ombudswoman for children, were exceptions. If you want a good example of how the media frames this topic, look at the picture behind the host. It reads “violence” next to
President Sauli Niinistö throws weight behind opposition’s election campaign by citing youth gang “problem”
President Sauli Niinistö, who has a track record of speaking disparagingly about Muslims and asylum seekers, was quoted as saying on Yle’s 8:30 news that he fears Finland “apparently” is “moving a bit” on Sweden’s path concerning youth gang violence. “It’s a very, very unfortunate and dangerous phenomenon, we seem to be following a bit
The PS’ and Kokoomus’ “concern” about Finland’s minority youth gangs is dishonest and a political stunt
Watching weekly Thursday’s question-and-answer session between the opposition and government can cause nausea. With parliamentary elections six months in April, expect opposition parties like the far-right Perussuomalaiset (PS)* and National Coalition Party (Kokoomus) to increase their attacks against ALL migrants. The truth about the PS and Kokoomus, the biggest and second-biggest opposition party, respectively, is
STATEMENT: Yle should stop picking on minority youths and stick to facts
It was in 2020 when Helsingin Sanomat published a big story about the dangers of youth gang violence in Helsinki. The story received a lot of criticism because it spread the misinformation that youth crime is rising in Helsinki and Greater Helsinki. It isn’t surprising that the state-owned broadcaster, Yle, has spread the issue, especially
Migrant Tales Media Monitoring: Yle continues to shamefully label racialized youths as dangers to society
The Finnish mainstream media has a poor reputation in the eyes of racialized Finns for spreading and labeling them. Yle did it again on its 8:30 pm news, where it led with a picture of a white youth giving the finger, followed by no sources except for “the police believes” that street gang criminal activity
Migrant Tales Media Monitoring: How #astudio persecutes and labels migrant youths with dubious talking points
#Astudio host Marja Sannikka kicks off the next topic on the talk show on gang violence with the following words that sound like a thriller: “Knives, violence, revenge. Finnish youth gang crime grows at a worrying pace.” In the talk show, does Sannikka gives us any facts about “the worrying [growth] pace” of gang violence
Helsinki youth worker Mahad Sheikh Musse’s message from the #authorities to #youth must be clear: Everyone is an individual and responsible for their crimes
Mahad Sheikh Musse* has worked in Helsinki as a youth worker in various roles and with various communities for the past 15 years. If there is somebody who understands minority youth issues, it is him. Migrant Tales had the opportunity to chat with Mahad during his busy schedule. We all know how the elections in Sweden went.
Remember the Muslim youth violently attacked by a group of enraged townspeople of Teuva?
Remember Fares Al-Obaidi, 19, who was chased and violently attacked on Saturday, June 6, by a gang of angry residents of Teuva, a town in Western Finland? Six months have passed since that terrible incident, and no charges have been brought yet against the alleged attackers. “The fact that I know nothing about my case
Sensational stories about youth crime by brown Finns: Tom Packalén in 2014, Helsingin Sanomat in 2020
What does Lari Malmgerg’s column on youth crime remind us of? In 2014, Perussuomalaiset (PS)* Tom Packalén wrote a similar story about how brown Finns were terrorizing white Finns in East Helsinki. At the end of the day, Packalén could not prove his claims, and the whole issue was forgotten even if he succeeded at
Two white Finn suspects held in police custody for Somali Finn youth death
THIS STORY WAS UPDATED UPDATED (3.5): What happened and led to the death of a Somali Finn? Where do we go from here? UPDATED (29.4): Who killed the 18-year-old Somali Finn? Was it a hate crime or not? An 18-year-old youth was killed by two suspects Sunday at 10.30 pm at the Kannelmäki train station
Racist and anti-Semitic violence will continue to grow in Finland
THE STORY WAS UPDATED Veteran National Coalition Party (Kokoomus) MP Ben Zyskowicz was attacked a second time Saturday in Eastern Helsinki by a man who threatened to kill him, according to Helsingin Sanomat. While waiting for the metro, a man approached the MP, started to yell, and punched him in the face. The police apprehended
The Finnish media, politicians and the police treat white far-right terrorism differently
THE STORY WAS UPDATED The National Bureau of Investigation (KRP) has remanded in custody a 28-year-old white Finn who used to be a municipal candidate for the Islamophobic Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party but now belongs to the far-right Sinimusta Liike (Blue-and-Black Movement), according to Helsingin Sanomat. The police’s intelligence gathering of the suspect led to a search of
Media Monitoring Group of Finland: Will the Perussuomalaiset’s xenophobic campaign help it win the election?
Finland’s parliamentary election is only 16 days away on April 2, and the question is if the radical-right Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party will capitalize on its Islamophobic campaign message. The assertion that the PS uses a migrant crime topic to attract voters before an election isn’t far-fetched. One of the most interesting discoveries of our first
Have the Perussuomalaiset succeeded in their quest for a migrant crime story to attract voters?
Fool me once shame on you fool me twice shame on me. The question is neither far-fetched nor provocative: The xenophobic Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party has used and exploited in the past three elections of 2011, 2015, and 2019 the migrant crime theme. Understanding the success that the Sweden Democrats, a party with neo-Nazi roots, and the Moderate Party in
Media Monitoring Group of Finland: The Finnish media’s too often toxic role in public discourse
The role of the media in shaping public discourse about minorities before the April parliamentary election is evident. We saw this in the case of Oulu in 2018-2019 and its present coverage of “youth gangs” from the fall. It is disheartening that no media has challenged politicians about how they exploit a topic like “youth
Allowing bias to take over Yle’s A-studio
THE STORY WAS UPDATED When you leave out the context in a news story, you leave the door open for bias. One topic in Tuesday’s A-studio talk show was whether it’s ok to burn the Quran in Finland. Contrary to other Nordic countries like Sweden and Denmark, burning the Koran in Finland is illegal. While
Media Monitoring Group of Finland : Viimeinen sana program left out some important questions unanswered
THE STORY WAS UPDATED Yle’s Viimienen sana invited three guests to talk about Finland’s alleged youth gang problem and how the media treats the topic. The three guests clearly indicated how the talk show would frame the topic. In the first place, there were no minorities taking part in the debate. All of the guests were white
Exposing white Finnish privilege #91: The right to generalize and victimize minorities
THE STORY WAS UPDATED Those who are worried about the blow to the credibility of the security guards due to several scandals that even led to the death of a woman in Espoo are quick to point out one should not jump to conclusions and label all security guards and the sector. True, we should
Finland’s security business sector must be placed under greater scrutiny
THE STORY WAS UPDATED I always ask if the politician or public official will change anything or keep the status quo. The answer you may get offers rapid insight into the problem. The security business scandal grew Thursday when a former Securitas manager is suspected of aggravated fraud in a fictitious case involving protection for
Exposing white Finnish privilege #90: A crime by “people of foreign background” offers more political mileage than one committed by white Finns
We read about the tragic death of a woman at Espoo’s Iso Omena shopping center on Saturday. The woman died while being escorted by four Securitas security guards out of the shopping center. The altercation ended with the woman on the floor, handcuffed, and eventually lifeless. The police announced Sunday that the security guards in
Media Monitoring Group of Finland*: The Avarn Security scandal reveals a lot about how the media frames minorities
THE STORY WAS UPDATED After reading 77 stories published by Yle (9 stories), Helsingin Sanomat (19), Iltalehti (6), Ilta-Sanomat (30), and MTV (13) about the Avarn Security scandal, only one story alleges racism as a factor in the working culture of security guards. Another story by Ilta-Sanomat, which wrote about excessive force, only mentioned once
Finland’s President Sauli Niinistö panders (again) to the racists
“That’s the central issue, people who want to be here need to accept our core values: democracy, equality, human rights and all of that. If they don’t, they can’t stay in Finland.” President Sauli Niinistö in Yle News During the many years I have written about President Sauli Niinistö, he has always disappointed me. For
Oulu 2019: Is the media going to allow the PS to pull another fast one on it?
What kind of reaction can you expect from a country that continues to see foreigners like Muslims and other people of color as a threat? Remember Oulu and the sexual harassment cases that spun out of control thanks to the fuel that politicians, the media, and the police were feeding? It’s déjà-vu again: politicians, the
A watershed that may impact April’s parliamentary election
Two hard-hitting editorials by Helsingin Sanomat on the mistreatment of labor migrants could indicate how the Islamophobic Perussuomalaiset* will do in the parliamentary election. I make such a claim because I am an optimist. We saw something similar in the US Midterm elections, which showed how voters rebuked Donald Trump and his election deniers. Apart
Migrant Tales Media Monitoring: PS’ Riikka Purra “praises” Ykkösaamu. Complacency devours facts.
Perussuomalaiset (PS)* chairperson Riikka Purra praised Ykkösaamu, claiming that it “has the best news and current affairs format in Finland, led by a professional journalist.” It is further proof of how the host, Seija Vaaherkumpa, didn’t do her job but offered journalistic lipservice to a radical right party with ties to violent groups in the
Migrant Tales Media Monitoring: An interview with Riikka Purra that reveals why the media is part of the “r”problem
Saturday’s interview with Perussuomalaiset (PS)* chairperson Riikka Purra on Ykkösaamu was a good example of how the media avoids asking tough questions, never mind doing fact-checking. Purra was able to spread her urban tales about migrants. Considering that the PS is a radical right party, host Serija Vaaherkumpu did not as one question about the
Yle A-studio host Marja Sannikka does it again and cannot get migrants off her mind
A-studio Host Marja Sannikka* hosted a disastrous talk show with Renaz Ebrahimi last year and, recently, a program on youth gangs. Both were disingenuous and unfair to minorities. Well, Sannikka is at it again, and wouldn’t you know that she had something lowly to say about migrants? Tuesday’s A-studio talk show was about civil disobedience, and Sannikka asked an environmental activist
Migrant Tales Media Monitoring: An Helsingin Sanomat editorial that boosts xenophobia
There is a lot of talk and unfortunate examples of how the media helps to spread populist parties’ hateful messages about migrants and minorities. An editorial published by Helsingin Sanomat Thursday is a good example of how the media does this. The good showing of the Sweden Democrats in September’s parliamentary election is due to
The PS of Finland: When a morally bankrupt party crosses the line
The Tom Packalén case is not only a reminder of what Finland can expect if the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* ever get into government, there is the real threat that we are in danger of forfeiting our successful Nordic welfare state for populism, nativist nationalism and xenophobia. In the face of this threat, it is the near-silence
PS MP of Finland ready to patrol streets and take law into his own hands
Remember what people said when the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* won their historic election victory in 2011? ”Nothing is going to happen you’ll see…they’ll soon implode like the Rural Party did in the 1970s…” some said playing down the whole matter. After almost four years, the PS continues to polarize society by instilling fear and fueling racism
Defining white Finnish privilege #12: Case Tom Packalén
Just like his colleague Perussuomalaiset (PS)* MP Teuvo Hakkarainen, MP Tom Packalén is another good example of white Finnish privilege. His example is in the same questionable league as National Coalition Party MP Pia Kauma, who falsely accused migrant mothers of buying new baby carriages with social aid while Finnish mothers buy used ones. If you are
The PS has found its political role model in the Sweden Democrats
Perussuomalaiset (PS)* MP Tom Packalén is an example of how the good election result of the Sweden Democrats has invigorated him and the PS to start scapegoating migrants in Finland. Taking into account the poor result of the PS in the last presidential, municipal and EU elections, it’s clear that some PS MPs will do anything to get attention and hopefully votes.
Media Monitoring Group of Finland:* The PS wants foreigners to pay taxes and get nothing in return
STATEMENT The chairperson of the Finns Party, Riikka Purra, has said on several occasions that her party’s long-term goal is that only Finnish citizens have the right to social welfare. While such a plan is highly discriminatory, even racist, it is unfortunate that journalists don’t ask Purra what she means and what challenges would arise
Suomen mediaseurantakollektiivi: “Nuorisojengit” ja vartijaskandaali suomalaisessa mediassa
Olemme pieni ryhmä nimeltä Suomen mediaseurantakollektiivi, jossa on edustettuina ihmisiä eri vähemmistötaustoista. Julkaisimme tänään ensimmäisen raporttimme suomeksi ja englanniksi. Onko media uutisoinut “katujengit”ja vartijaskandaali reilusti? Mielestämme uutisointi on ollut ongelmallista. Lue raportti ja tutustu havaintoihimme.
Kokoomus proves it again: racism coupled with nationalism is a good fix before a parliamentary election
Perussouomalaiset (PS)* head Riikka Purra wasn’t the only one overjoyed by the latest Helsingin Sanomat opinion poll, which showed the radical-right party overtaking the Social Democrats to second place after the National Coalition Party (Kokoomus). Behind Purra was Kokoomus chief Petteri Orpo, gleeing. Finns will go to the polls on April 4 to elect 200 MPs. While observers
Kokoomus’ Atte Kaleva: The MP cashing in on anti-immigration tirades for political profit
Parliamentary elections are in April. How can I tell? When National Coalition Party (Kokoomus) politicians like MP Atte Kaleva spread lies and populist soundbites about migrants. Kaleva has a tough time stomaching criticism, and usually, his answers are knee-jerk reactions. One of these is when he charged Professor Panu Ratikiainen with defamation because he called
Dismantle institutional racism and myths if you want people to adapt to Finland
The ongoing discussion in Finland about our ever-growing cultural and ethnic diversity is grounded on two misleading assertions that hide the core problem: language is the magic bullet to become a part of society, and white Finnish society is innocent – if you don’t adapt it’s because of you. Heikki Turkka of Children of the
The suspects of one of Finland’s worst hate crimes in 2020 may face charges in early June
Remember the young Muslim who was violently attacked by a gang of white Finns in June in the Western Finnish town of Teuva? According to Fares Al-Obaidi, the police plan to conclude their investigations into the crime in early June. What happened to Al-Obaidi last year changed his life. He moved away to Espoo to
Institute of Race Relations: Police database spreads institutional racism
The IRR welcomes Amnesty International and The Monitoring Group’s recent reports on the racially discriminatory nature of the Metropolitan Police Service’s Gangs Matrix intelligence database.
What we should learn from the Tapanila sexual assault case
The Tapanila rape case is a good example of how the Finnish media permitted again its prejudices to get the better of itself. Those who committed the crime had everything against them: They were “Somalis,” or youths with “foreign backgrounds,” who committed “gang rape.” In today’s Finland, where xenophobia is thick in the air, those two words are sure to unlock your darkest prejudices.
How can we deal with serious social issues like rape in a country like Finland that has issues with racism?
Veronica Honkasalo is a Helsinki city councilwoman for the Left Alliance tweeted the following below about the sentence that three suspects got in the northern Helsinki Tapanila rape case of March: “It’s clear that the sexual offense sentence [that the three suspects] got was too light. There aren’t any light rapes but keep it clear of racism.”
UPDATE (Apr. 22): Migrant Tales’ 2015 Hall of Poor and Sloppy Journalism
Migrant Tales’ 2015 Hall of Poor and Sloppy Journalism will be updated separately. To see other examples of opinionated journalism in Finland about cultural diversity, please go to this link. Apr. 22 Tapanilan joukkoraiskauksesta syytteet viidelle (YLE) What’s wrong with this story? The news story by YLE on sentencing five youths with so-called “foreign backgrounds” is an
UPDATE (December 5): Migrant Tales’ 2015 Hall of Poor and Sloppy Journalism
How does the Finnish media give politicians that spread xenophobia and racism inflated respectability and importance? How can they spread their prejudices and lies about immigrants and minorities without the help of the media? Migrant Tales will begin to collect stories from January 7 written by careless journalists that have been taken for a ride by such
Two questionable eras in Europe with the same message
Two posters (apologies for the offensive content) from different eras: One that is anti-semitic from Germany in 1940* and the other from a referendum in Switzerland in 2009 on a ban of building minarets on mosques. Even though these posters were printed in different periods, the message is the same: barbarization of a group. *The