Thursday Thoughts: Is True Crime Media Becoming Problematic?

I want to pre-face this post by saying that I am a regular consumer of true crime content. I find the subject interesting. Namely: what causes people to tick, and act the way that they do.

I understand that this isn’t a simple subject matter, but I’ll be giving my opinion as a person who consumes the content.

I don’t see an issue in taking an interest in the darker aspects of life. There more than likely wouldn’t be law enforcement agencies in general.

Humans have been committing horrid acts of violence on each other throughout history, unfortunately. I feel re-telling stories of darker nature, from an educational standpoint, is necessary. We just need to portray it in a respectful manner.

Education is an underrated tool

Now, this is what I feel is making true crime feel like a problematic subject. Glamorisation, especially regarding those who’ve committed murder.

Two names that immediately come to mind, and Netflix has even made their own content about them, are Jeffrey Dahmer and Ted Bundy. The former played by Zac Efron; the latter played by Evan Peters.

I think it’s important to share stories like these, we can learn from them, but I mostly see people praising the actors, and very little remembering that these events took place. Innocent people died.

I’m not saying Efron and Evans shouldn’t be praised, but why are they the focal point?

Do your research & be respectful.

There’s no escaping true crime content. There are copious podcasts, YouTube channels, TikTok creators, and that’s not including true crime content from mainstream media.

Content creators should be respectful if they are going to re-tell stories of this nature.

It’s imperative that thorough research is done. You don’t want to spread misinformation. It can be damaging, and bring more upset to the families of victims. If the family is unhappy with your content, I feel it should be removed, or at least edited in a way that makes them comfortable.

Be respectful. These were real events that impacted real people. I’m not mentioning any names in this post, but I’m seeing content creators that are eating large amounts of food and being overly cheery while discussing cases.

I’ve also seen clips of people talking about cases using ASMR. These are just two examples and may just be personal gripes, but it just doesn’t seem appropriate.

Final Thoughts

Taking an interest in subject matter like this isn’t problematic. Many people like history, current events, and those subjects are often dark in nature.

Your interest becomes problematic when you idolise criminals, you glamorise serial killers, forget their victims, and anything that draws attention away from the fact that victims will have families, and this still haunts them.

One thought on “Thursday Thoughts: Is True Crime Media Becoming Problematic?

  1. I tried watching the first episode of Dahmer and it was a little too much for me, so I ended up not finishing the series. What sucks about re-telling these stories is that the victims’ families have to suffer.

    With Dahmer, there were so many adaptations and I think it would have been neat if the series dedicated some of the proceeds to the victim’s families.


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