It is not M’lud Leveson that will see the Dead Tree Proles out of work and unemployable; they are more likely to condemn themselves by their own fair hand in their increasingly hysterical efforts to be seen as relevant and necessary to our society.
I shouldn’t read the Daily Mail before I have my breakfast, not good for the blood pressure, but then I really shouldn’t read it at all. Day old hyperbole and speculation, interspersed amongst the advertising, posing as relevant news. Today I couldn’t resist a link sent by an enraged Raccoonist overnight. Stephen Glover on the ‘rampant corruption‘ that France’s ‘poodle press’ fails to report on.
Unlike the sturdy, reliable, fearless, investigative reporting of solid news as practised by the British press. In his dreams.
He has the barefaced cheek, the brass neck, the choke inducing bravado, to cite as evidence:
The British public was rightly inflamed by sometimes relatively insignificant surreptitious claims by MPs that came to light because of the determined investigation by news-papers.
Dear God! Would those be the same fearless investigative reporters who had lived cheek by jowl with those MPs for generations and never breathed a word of their suspicions? Would those be the same fearless investigative reporters who were too scared to take the information from Guido in case they got sued? Would those be the same fearless investigative reporters who waited until an Inland Revenue whistle blower sold the CD of the MPs fraudulent claims to The Telegraph and then had a field day gossiping over the more lurid details? It would.
I cough and splutter every time I read that Jerome Taylor of the Independent was the fearless reporter who got the Court of Protection opened to the media. In your dreams Jerome. I still have his pleading e-mail begging for my sources regarding the case which did open up the Court after my site notched up 25,000 hits in a single day and the Judge decided that the case had already had considerable publicity and therefore there was no harm in the media reporting the outcome.
At the risk of blowing my own trumpet (and why not?) there was not a single newspaper or TV channel that was not aware of the manner in which a defenceless Down’s syndrome girl was being paraded around the country by those who wished to fill their own Paypal coffers peddling the story of multiple rapes, corruption in high legal circles, and un-investigated murders; did any one of them spend the hour necessary on the Internet to find the original documents necessary to prove that it was all hokum and in reality that girl was in desperate need of protection from the people around her? No they didn’t, they merely politely turned down the story when they realised it was full of holes, in the process helping to fuel the conspiracy theories that there was a ‘D’ notice on the story; they did nothing to help her.
I dare say that Dick Puddlecote coughs and splutters every time a hack copies and pastes his perfectly researched and beautifully written denouncements of the trollop dolled out by the Tobacco Control press releases – where are the fearless investigative reporters looking into the facts in the main stream media?
Did any main stream journalist ever question Gordon Brown’s mental health before John Ward’s article?
I could go on and on, there are numerous examples of the fact that investigative reporting is done these days by Bloggers; the main stream media, docile poodles that they are, concentrate on partially rewriting sufficient press releases of nonsensical stories that name celebrities with sufficient pull to bring ‘hits’ to their on line sites, and keep the advertising coming in.
“Because we have a strong (though by no means as strong as it was) and vigilant national Press.”
No, we don’t, Stephen, we have a scared band of hack writers, hiding behind press releases, terrified that their glory days are over.
Most French newspapers are weak or deferential, and often both. In one way or another, they are heavily subsidised by — and thus beholden to — the French state.
And ALL British newspaper are BOTH weak AND deferential – and TOTALLY subsidised by – and thus beholden to – the advertising industry.
They are also shackled by privacy laws, which make the investigation of wrong-doing among the powerful more problematic.
I’ll grant you that French privacy laws make reporting mere speculation more problematic, but speculation isn’t the business you claim to be in, Stephen, is it? It also makes gossiping about a film-star’s 15 year old daughter’s cellulite almost impossible – but what has your ability to do that got to do with your belief that you are vigilantly holding the executive to account? Sweet nothing.
As a result of all these factors, corruption in French politics is rife.
We have rampant corruption in British politics, despite your freedom to report that Kim Kardashian caught her 6″ heel in a grating last night…!
Compare the way in which the British Press covered the revelations of MPs’ expenses fiddles. In France, such an examination wouldn’t have been possible because deputies are given £5,000 a month to do with as they please in addition to a salary of £70,000 plus £90,000 a year for office expenses.
Would that be the same way in which British ex-Prime Ministers are given £115000 a year to do with as they please in addition to their pension – and British newspapers are no more capable of cracking the secrecy around those expenses than the French are?
My purpose is not so much to denigrate French newspapers, though they have often acted in a shamefully subservient way, as to suggest that the British Press, for all its faults, is far more robust and independent-minded and, in its way, constitutes a precious national asset.
No, my little endangered species, I’m sure that isn’t your ‘purpose’; your purpose is to ensure that you do not have to join the ranks of unpaid writers who inhabit the Blogosphere. Your purpose is to ensure that you can go on purporting to offer a ‘news’ service, that relies on celebrity tittle tattle, copy and past jobs on Bloggers and local newspapers, and press releases from government departments and their satellite ‘fake charities’.
‘Grow a pair’ as the saying goes. Get out there and do some real reporting, instead of wailing that Leveson might cut short your stream of Kardashian nonsense. You have facilities and talent that the Blogosphere can only dream of, why don’t you use it?
Grr, I’m off for breakfast before I burst a blood vessel.
h/t to Max Farquar, from whom I shamelessly nicked the superb graphic.