Brief Overview The story of the Chilean miners was heard around the world and was definitely a suspenseful story that, for the most part ended well. Everyone emerged from the collapsed mine physically healthy to promises from their government of bright futures and better lives. Sadly those promises did not pan out. After being failed by their government and facing the broken promises made to them, the miners are trying to pick up the shattered pieces of their lives and move on as best they can. Many cannot find employment because of the high profile nature of their story, and most are worse off today than they were before this all happened. Fast forward to
2013, the miners are now locked in a bitter dispute over their movie rights. Thirty three men that banded together for 69 days to survive what can only be described as a horrific ordeal, have now been divided into two groups battling over life rights that many say they were tricked into signing away (guardian, 2013). After the dismissal of criminal charges against the owners of the mining company, Alejandro Bohn and Marcelo Kemeny, disputes over movie/book royalties, and a pending civil lawsuit (guardian, 2013), it remains to be seen how this story will end for
Special Considerations There are several considerations to make when deciding how to disseminate information to the masses. In the case of the Chilean mining incident, the audience consisted of fellow miners, family members, and those with no vested interests (bystanders). It is important to take your audience and its needs into consideration before communication with the audience. When delivering information to family and coworkers of the miners it would be important to remember that they are victims as well. For at least 17 days they were unaware of the condition of their loved ones, and for 69 days, until the last person was rescued from that mine, they had no idea how many of them would actually make it. The news should be delivered delicately and with compassion. Give the family and coworkers as much information as possible. They will have questions about the condition of their family/friends so as much detail as possible should be provided to them. Food was scarce; the threat of gases such as methane poisoning the oxygen supply was present, the heat was sweltering (nytimes, 2011), as well as other insufferable circumstances endured by the miners would be important information for family and friends to know. This being such a high profile case, news was bound to come out in some other facet, and undoubtedly sensationalized. It would be better for friends and family to get the information first hand, that way they are getting facts and not tabloid fodder. It would also be important to family and coworkers to know what happens after the incident is over. What type of care and compensation will the miners receive, and for fellow miners, what type of precautions is the company taking to prevent these incidents from occurring in the future.
Action Before/After the Message Communication must occur within the correct context, so before the message is delivered the messenger must ensure the five w’s are answered (Cheesebro, O’Connor, & Rios, 2010). For information to be accurate and in the correct context, who, what, when, where, and why must be present in the details. It is also important to remember the relational context of the information being communicated (Cheesebro, O’Connor, & Rios, 2010). Information would not be delivered in the same context to family, friends, and coworkers the same as it would the general masses.
Last, and perhaps most importantly, messengers have a responsibility to ensure that they are conducting themselves ethically, not leaking information before its time and not sensationalizing stories and misleading the public.