This week I have heard 'news'........ So what?
At the beginning of the week BBC Radio 4's flagship news programme, A.M. announced that the mayor of a town in Thuringen, Germany, had the novel idea of selling pot holes. You can pay about £45 for a 'good' pot hole. From the discussion it sounded like some of the pot holes were deep enough to abseil down! Your donation would allow your very own dedication to lie over the repaired hole in the road.
Yesterday, Wednesday 10th March 2010, there was general news reporting and sharp analysis on the domestic banking reports. It was balanced off with a brief review of how this news sat with global financial developments. To my chagrin, I was unable to keep the channel tuned because of the location I was in.
Not being able to continue to listen to BBC Radio 4, I tuned in to Radio Scotland, who present a morning news round, meant I think to offer quality analysis with news, but with the specific Scottish elements or focus. I was surprised to hear again, about the pot holes in Germany, by now, well past being fresh news, followed by the banking news of the day, which had huge gaps, missing very important information and thereby, changing the character of the report beyond recognition.
Radio Scotland, sadly, presented old news to fill a space, I should think, although they could have produced in the time, a better and broader and more honest analysis of the banking feature. What I heard on Scottish news was so bereft of vital elements, which, had I not known about from its sister news broadcast on Radio 4, (which comes from London) would have skewed the news to the point of being disingenuous, at the least, inexpert at best.
There are plenty of snappy sound-bite magazine programmes on radio and TV channels, there is also plenty of shallow provision in the tabloid media. Unfortunately, the broadsheets, (they were once quality papers to read and study) are dumbing down and going in the same sound-bite direction. I am not naive about newspaper slants, but amongst their articles there could always be found interesting features and analysis from more than one point of view. Thinking, comparing and analysis was allowed!!
Scotland's main Radio station has got to be better than any of this. It is not. I found it very disappointing indeed.