Falklands : PHONE HACKING RAMIFICATIONS – A NAÏVE VIEW
Submitted by Falkland Islands News Network (Juanita Brock) 09.11.2011 (Article Archived on 14.12.2011)
But in the real world media scrutiny is out of focus; and the q-dos made when parliamentary expenses were exposed was wasted by traditional front page fodder - sex, celebrity, sport and scandal - and lost in the fog created by phone hacking and using detective agencies to spy on people.
PHONE HACKING RAMIFICATIONS – A NAÏVE VIEW
An Editorial by J. Brock (FINN)
In a democracy media is the 4th Estate of Government, providing surveillance of policy, legislation and practices, amongst other things. But in the real world media scrutiny is out of focus; and the q-dos made when parliamentary expenses were exposed was wasted by traditional front page fodder - sex, celebrity, sport and scandal - and lost in the fog created by phone hacking and using detective agencies to spy on people.
Miss-directed persuasion that the public needs to know about people’s personal habits degrades media from watchdog to big brother; resulting in standards thrust on our leaders and entertainers being obtainable only by God. Even those striving to do the right thing fall short. The media knows this and capitalises on it.
Traditionally media workers fight for press freedom – but freedom to do what? Newspaper offices don’t yet get torched for revealing the cup size of Madonna’s pointed bra, or bearing all on page 3.
Ask any journalist from a 3rd world country what they did to deserve jail, beatings and office torching and you discover the real sacrifices made by media workers who got it right. Put frankly, for them, printing or broadcasting the truth can lead to murder.
First world countries use more sophisticated methods to keep journalists in their place, often making whistle blowers redundant, bullying, or harassing them.
It’s no wonder media survives on front page fodder and have been tempted to set aside uncomfortable words for phone hacking and other dodgy ways of purloining information irrelevant to what matters in a democracy. I can’t help thinking our focus needs to be adjusted to see the whole picture.
Reporting indicates those detective agencies aren’t finding out what is happening with the European Debt Crisis, the “Occupy Movement,” cuts in education and medical services, or why British service personnel are still losing their lives in Afghanistan; but are mandated to spy-out what the royals are doing, thwarting investigations and blabbing on who’s sleeping with whom.
It’s my own personal gripe that elements of the media focus on the cost of defending the Falkland Islands, threatening Argentine invasion due to UK defence cuts, instead of doing surgery on the economic and societal ramifications resulting from 911 - picking at a gnat but ignoring the log.
“But things they are a changing” and people are speaking – showing their displeasure at what is being written and/or shown in our newspapers and magazines. Recently offices of a French publication were torched after a graphic of something offensive to an organisation appeared on its cover. And protests over the same subject five years ago cost millions.
At the moment fiery protests are limited to one item deemed offensive to some but this could escalate into “punishment” for other things found disgusting to them – and I don’t mean just Madonna’s pointy bra.
If we don’t stop our silly seasons others (not just the group alluded to) with non-productive agendas will do it for us to the detriment of press freedom. You’ve heard it before that with press freedom, the responsibility to ensure clear focus is paramount.
We need to stand with our 3rd world colleagues and shoulder the consternation of a few in order to point the way forward and out of the mess caused when media chose the path of least resistance to justify keeping their newspapers and broadcasts alive.
To keep a certain clinch minded blogger happy - here’s where the rubber meets the road, folks. Let’s get cracking!