Daily Archives: March 28, 2011

Anti-journalism

Facebook puts vulnerable children at risk of depression, warn doctors‘ [istyosty link]. From the article:

‘A lot of what’s happening is actually very healthy, but it can go too far,’ [Dr Megan Moreno] said…

Parents shouldn’t get the idea that using Facebook ‘is going to somehow infect their kids with depression,’ she said.

Too late, if people actually believe what they read on the Mail Online website.

In other news: ‘Isn’t it a bit early for that? Britney Spears films free concert for Good Morning America (and what a raunchy wake-up call it will be)‘ [istyosty link, has to be seen to be believed]. The article sees fit to demonstrate just how raunchy the routine is by accompanying it with 21 photos and 2 Youtube videos. This really is anti-journalism in action.

Sources & plagiarism

This Huffington Post story written on the 26th March was clearly attributed to Reuters, two days later and it appears on the Daily Mail website attributed to ‘Daily Mail Reporter’ without any mention of Reuters or the Huffington Post. Inputting the Huffington Post article into Churnalism.com and it shows that the Mail has cut 77% and pasted 82% with 3247 characters overlapping. Who knows, the Mail may have picked up the same wire copy from Reuters which explains the overlaps, but even if this is the case, why don’t they state that the story was sourced from Reuters?

If it is a case of the Mail ripping off the Huffington Post, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time they have been found guilty of wanton plagiarism.

March 26th old news already

Today’s front pages:

  • Daily Mail: ‘Fury over Bulger killer’s tryst with girl guard’, and a story about Princess Eugenie riding a bicycle.
  • Daily Star: ‘JORDAN: If I revealed what REALLY happened Alex would be destroyed for ever!’, a small piece about Sian O’Callaghan and another about Coleen Rooney.
  • Daily Mirror: ‘Back on the beach: Canoe man reveals how he faked death at scene of the crime’, some drivel about someone leaving Loose Women and a short intro piece on ‘Libya rape girl’.
  • The Sun: ‘Sian cops watched as suspect lit bonfire’, plus short piece on Libya and dancing on ice winner (I think, I can only view a tiny thumbnail of this front page, so I could be wrong).
  • The Independent: ‘Onwards to Triploi’, an advert for an article on ‘The toxic question of where the PM educates his children’ but it also advertises a story on the protests: ‘The protests carried a message the Government must hear’.
  • The Daily Telegraph: ‘Britain is open for business, say top investors'; some drivel about Princes Will and Harry and their stag do, an article on how ‘Anarchists “plan to target royal wedding”‘, some stuff about cancer drugs, Gaddafi and ‘A barbecue August’.
  • The Times: ‘Libya rebels close in on Gaddafi’s strongholds’, lots of other lead articles, too small to make out.
  • The Guardian: ‘Turkey offers to broker Libya ceasefire as rebels advance’, an article on Mansion tax, the Bank on England inflation forecast for 2012 and a small advert for an article on the demonstration – ‘Britain can still state a good demo – pity about the mini-mob who gave the tabloids their headlines’.

I know the demonstration was held on Saturday and that most newspapers covered it on their front pages yesterday, but not everyone buys a Sunday paper and doesn’t the demonstration deserve further prominent coverage? This is the main problem with our current media, all news is old news before we have even had the time to properly digest it. It is replaced, each day with something else to distract us. Except that this isn’t always the case, when it comes to speculation the front pages can be dedicated to the same topic for as long is as needed – the media furore over Joanna Yeates for example dominated front pages with nothing more than lurid, invasive and malicious speculation.

Yet as today demonstrates, when they have the chance to reflect on something important, something solid – a topic that requires careful consideration instead of mindless speculation – they fail, every single time, to provide it.