The Role of the Mass Media in Conflicts : Sámi reindeer herders balancing between traditional law and state law in a predator dispute against officials in Finland
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This thesis is about reindeer herders’ untold stories and about the challenges facing journalists to do these stories. Focusing on the realized situation in the Giehtaruohtas area in Northwest Finland, the last years have seen the biggest reindeer damage by predators. The Sámi reindeer herders’ situation in Finland differs from that in other Scandinavian countries; the effect also is seen by the European Union. The rising number of predators have been seen as an issue because of the protection, but officials have not been able to take neccessary actions based on legislations and many other reasons. The role of the Sámi and Finnish media in the north has been crucial because southern media have not given much attention to this matter. That is why this study is important, to see if reindeer herding is receiving its rightful coverage in news at least in Northern Finland, where reindeer herding is still one of the core livelihoods. My aim is to find out why reindeer herders feel they do not get their voices heard and what role the media are taking in predator matters. These issues are reflected through Sámi history and their rights in history then and compared with the laws in Finland today. Media articles and their perspectives on these matters are reflected through indigenous philosophies. Dát čálus gieđahallá boazodoalliid jávohisvuođa ja dan mii lea sivva dasa ahte sámi boazodoallit eai leat oidnosis Davvi-Suomas Sámi ja Suoma mediain. Giehtaruohtasa guovllus leat Suoma boazodoalu stuorimus spirevahágat, gos stuorimus vahát eallit leat geatki ja goaskin, mát guktot leat ráfáidahtton. Lágaid rievdan manjimuš 30 jagis lea váikkuhan ollu boazodillái, danne geahččadange Sámi vuoigatvuođaid historjjá ja veardidan dálá dillái Suomás jagis 2017 ja movt media buktá dan ovdan. Gažádan mediaid rolla jearahallamiid bokte, dego maiddái eiseváldiid oainnuid dán áššái. Seammás go ozan vástádusa vuoigatvuođaid sajádahkii álgoálbmot perspektiivvas, čielggadan mán dásis ja mán viidát mediat nágodit gokčat fáttáid ja gii oažžu jienaset gullot. Keywords: Reindeer herders, traditional knowledge, wolverine, eagle, media, illegal, Sápmi, Indigenous, minority media, legacy media, journalism, Sámi rights, hunting rights.