Is shark baiting (for photography) wrong?
Posted 15 July 2013 - 02:51 AM
I buy my own photographic kit. Diving equipment manufacturers and diving services suppliers get even-handed treatment from me whether they choose to advertise in the publications I write for or not. All the equipment I get on loan is returned as soon as it is finished with. Did you know you can now get Diver Mag as an iPad/Android app?
Posted 17 July 2013 - 11:24 PM
I think you leave out a very crucial part of the equation John. Instant gratification culture. We want everything like a zoo now. That's what the Stuart Coves and Tiger Beaches have become. There are ways to get up close to big sharks that require a lot of work and patience and the hit ratio is very low. However, no need for chum/feed except what nature offers in bait fish or whale carcasses. But how many people have the attention span to wait to view such a spectacle? Or even the opportunity. It's very possible to see sharks come right up to your face without any artificial feeding or chumming, it just occur with any regularity other than months of the year.
As statistics go, David Diley's simple numbers aren't reflective of the actual reality. Fiji has 800k people, Florida 20 million and the Bahamas 300k. there are many ways to look at this but basically that 11 and 9 attacks in Fiji and Bahamas respectively are relatively higher than Florida and Brazil. Then you have to factor in exposure risk and tourism number spikes. People have to be in the water to be bitten by sharks so that is the best way to make it relevant, instead of throwing numbers out to make a point. Then there's South Africa, the country with the most deaths by sharks in recent years, many of them quite near to shark chumming/feeding operations.
I can't help but see a not so veiled vested interest in the marketing of sharks for these shark diving operations. So while I applaud their efforts in trying to protect sharks, I have to question their motives.
"Journalism is what someone else does not want printed, everything else is public relations."