Tuesday, 26 April 2011

The Media Narrative and Who Controls it.

The ever excellent EU Referendum has a post on the way the media set the agenda for public debate.

But what Richard fails to notice is this is an age-old issue. For as long as I've been alive, the media has never been unbiased; from the broadsheets to the BBC, there has always been an agenda and its always been a mission to gather independent perspectives.

I remember in my late teens in the late seventies becoming interested in Short Wave Radio and the access it gave to broadcasters from many countries. What they provided were alternative viewpoints on world news. Sure, they were biased in their own way but that was ok. The intelligent thing was to listen to the UK media and its international counterparts and come to an independant viewpoint, one which was usually some way between the two.

It is something that I have never lost. Listening to Radio Moscow, the tractor stats would be interspersed with an alternative viewpoint on the latest global flashpoint. Always over the top, but comparing Moscow with the BBC World Service, the truth would appear somewhere between the two.

Today, thanks to the internet and satellite TV, there are thousands of alternative viewpoints for independent thinkers to sample. As with Short Wave Radio all those decades ago, the truth might not necessarily lie with any particular source: its up to the listener/watcher/reader to investigate those sources and then come to an independent viewpoint.

One thing I can say is that although the UK media was still biased back in the seventies, its a lot worse today than it was back then. It seems the increase in the number of outlets has decreased the quality of reporting.

Apart from the internet that is. Right now, the 'net is the last bastion of the independent thinker.

Long may it last.

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