19 So What’s News?

“The danger that the press may misunderstand or misinterpret or even misinform is in the final analysis a small price to pay compared to the services the news media render when they expose wrongdoing or gross errors of judgement by the powers that be.”

Leonard H. Marks, lawyer 1995

This short chapter takes a sideways look at the media. Makes the point that a high proportion of the “serious” news is reporting upon either today’s plans, programmes and proposals by politicians – or the failures, wars and scandals that have resulted from the plans, programmes, and proposals about which we were reading in the years gone by.  It seems like only the names and the places change from week to week. There is not a lot of new stuff being reported.

But god bless the media too! Were we relying solely on government bulletins, we would know little of oil spills in the oceans, corruption in government, rising asthma among children, Mad Cow Disease, radiation leaks, Gulf War syndrome, endangered species or global warming.
Sure, we could use some more fearless investigative reporting out there, but the growing Internet media “channels” are filling in admirably.

Greg's posts on this

Who controls the press?

I am bemused by the ongoing story about how “we” (the state) should be curtailing press freedoms in response to recent phone hacking scandals by scurrilous journalists. Let me get this right: the people who are known to be illegally