Updated September 24th
2004, Sydney Australia
Media and its lies
Well, we watch TV every day and we
pretend we don't believe the news, but are we fooling ourselves? We
probably are. I know that most of you who come to this website are
in the media. You are probably newsreaders, presenters, producers,
whatever. One thing is for sure. You feel you know the media. What
might not be so apparent is that when you are deeply involved in any
environment, you can become blinded by the light!
say the easiest person to sell anything to is a sales person. Why?
Because they believe in their product so much, they assume your product
is just a good. In the news environment, we are constantly subject
to masses of information coming from news wires, the internet, and
other sources. If we are subjected to constant bombardment of information,
we can become overwhelmed and start believing what we read.
I am connected on every level. I have over 100 channels of TV, a network
of 8 computers in my home, news alerts coming from every news agency
in the Western world, and I see such stereotyping its not funny. Here's
an example of how weird it all is for me. I regularly read/hear/see
how the Israelis hate the Arabs and visa versa. I see the problems
in The West Bank, the suicide bombers doing what they think is right
to save their piece of land, innocent people killed as they happen
to be in the way of terrorists. It's shocking. It's a disgusting situation.
I'm left believing that all Israelis hate all Arabs. After all, that's
what it looks like to me.
Now, I live over a corner shop on a beach in Sydney. It's owned by
a really nice guy from Beirut in Lebenon. Two doors down, there's
a take-away shop, owned by a bunch of Israelis. They're really nice
guys too (In fact they live in my block of flats and I regularly get
drunk with them!). The guy from Lebenon who owns the shop downstairs
is not only friends with the Israelis, but he has bought into their
take-away business. Now, how does this fit into the stereotyping that
the media has fed me? Nowhere. That's where. I'm in the media and
I'm getting confused. What is it like for the regular punter in the
suburbs who only has access to network TV? She/He assumes that all
Israelis hate all Arabs. The media is dangerous. Dangerous because
it simplifies everything, and it is accessable to millions of people
at any one moment.
I write I am watching a great old movie from the seventies (1976)
called "Network". Great grasp of how the media is shaping
people's views on everything. It's about Howard Beale, a news anchor
who has been told he will be fired because his ratings are bad. He
says "live" on air that he will blow his brains out "next
Tuesday". The network management want to fire him, but the ratings
shoot up and they decide to take the chance of letting him stay on
air. Faye Dunaway does a sterling job as the producer for the primetime
News show. Peter Finch plays the News Anchor. Interestingly, he died
later that year. This was his last movie. But what a way to go out.
Anyway, Howard Beale does his own style of news show for the "UBS"
Network. 60 million Americans are listening to Beale's every word.
"I want all of you to get out of your chairs, open the window,
and shout I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore",
Beale shouted at millions of viewers over 67 TV stations on the UBS
network across America. And as the movie would have it, millions of
Americans opened their windows and shouted the slogan. The Beal News
show eclipsed all the other networks in the ratings. Great stuff.
But not real media. What a shame.
previous radiohome pages:
SMOKING AND THE MEDIA
14: A SUPERSTAR IN YOUR OWN JAIL
13: INTERNET RADIO
12: OZ MEDIA - YOU HAVE TO BE AUSSIE, EH, MATE!
11: REALITY BITES!ARCHIVE
ARCHIVE 10: LETS NOT CRY OVER SPILT MILK - OR SHOULD WE?
ARCHIVE 9: Q10 WHO?
ARCHIVE 8:FREE RADIO CANNOT
DIE. JAMES JOYCE NEVER DID!
7: IT'S ALL ABOUT QUALITY MY FRIENDS!
ARCHIVE 6: COMREG CLOSES
PIRATES IN DUBLIN
5: MURDOCH: DON'T TOUCH THAT DIAL
4: FALLING INTO THE PAST!
ARCHIVE 3:-PETER MADISON
ARCHIVE 2: PRE-SUPERPIRATES
1: BROADCASTING TO THE WORLD
The views expressed on this site are not necessarily those of it's
owners. These views are expressly my own. Please
also note, George Long was my broadcast name. My real name is Henry