I'm so sick and tired of sifting through the hateful, prejudicial, unfair, partial, discriminatory news sources so readily available with a simple Google search. Even more irritating is people's incessant need to join in on any angst-addled, spiteful bandwagon that comes rolling by them. They jump on even if everyone on it is on fire, I swear!
This angered me so much I had to plop out a quick article on Trump's easily misinterpreted words, but this is beside the point....
I would like to know where everyone else chooses to get their news, or if we are all just wallowing in this filth together?
I'm old school, Kyler. I actually subscribe to our local newspaper. I only get the Thursday and Sunday papers. I read them both on my back porch each Sunday morning with a cup of coffee.
Outside of that, I watch News 13, which is exclusive to Spectrum TV. I only watch it after work and only 'til 5:51 when they give the seven-day forecast.
I'd rather watch something entertaining than depressing, so my news reading is limited by choice.
It is certainly true that news media never report unbiased. It is not necessarily about what they report, but what they don´t report.
So how to get a hold of information and not of biased news? For me it is fairly easy. I have the comfortable choice of a number of languages. Getting news in different languages automatically gives you different viewpoints.
For example it is already interesting to read Wikipedia articles on one and the same topic in different languages. Articles are not auto translated but contributed by different authors, thus representing different viewpoints.
For printed media in nonenglish languages i can recommend the google translator. This gadget has become very powerful in recent years.
Here in Germany we have Astra Satellites group, that provides English Channels: CNN, BBC, CNBC, Al Jazeera and some European News Channels. China and Russia have their english outlets as well.
And then we have the myriad of youtube channels, choose your flavour.
All news are biased, so how to find the truth? Well, it helps if you can relate the story to personal experience and common sense. And it helps if you understand that every story is a "Scheinriese", a story that gets bigger, the farther away you are.
I follow the Dutch, Spanish, and UK newspapers. (sometimes American) and it's interesting to see that often you can read better stories about your own country in foreign newspapers.
I read and still read the Guardian a lot. But I was completely taken aback that when the UK elections came they openly supported labour. To me as a Dutch person. This is a no go. No respectable newspaper should openly back one party or another.
I started to read Al Jazeera (English edition) Which is refreshing as it has a different point of view towards the world than Western News"papers".
A thing I realized is that often foreign newspapers are more objective and honest towards what is happening in your own country.
Biased news does exist, so does fake news. But it depends totally on yourself to choose the newsmedia. Today the Internet can give you any news you want. There are thousands of news channels in English. And thousands of podcasts.
Day time Fox news is at this point my go too.network. CNN, too much of a battering ram. They are obviously biased, just a hair away from propaganda. Just my view. Now, the night time line up on all news networks, forget it nothing but ongoing geared for prime time talk jock dribble. Can't stomach it.
CNN might be a bit biased, they do sometimes twist the facts a little when reporting on current affairs in the UK; but overall they do give a fairly accurate report on British events.
However, Fox News, frequently create 'Fake News' about Britain; so I wouldn't be surprised if some of their news about the USA is also 'faked'?
Is it not discouraging that we find ourselves having to more or less weed out the truth from actually any form of media.
Sorry but when News Media like FOX NEWS and The MAIL deliberate FAKE NEWS, in a BIG WAY (Out Right Lies), which MANY Gullible people believe; then NO THANKS.
Perhaps you misunderstood my comment. Not sure I conveyed I am a fan of any media network? My comment was to convey that I am discouraged with all networks as well as all forms of media. To be a bit blunter, I feel all night time networks shows are greatly bias, and border on ridiculous. They create nothing but groupthink one way or the other.
If it wasn’t for the fact that you stated in your opening comment “Day time Fox news is at this point my go too network”, then I wouldn’t dispute that I might have misunderstood you; misunderstandings are quite common in these forums.
But you do seem to be suggesting there is nothing wrong with Fox News during their ‘Daytime’ schedule?
Fox News Bias reporting (strongly in favour of the Republican Party specifically, and a Conservative bias in general) is such a well-known problem that Wikipedia has devoted a whole article on the subject: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fox_News_controversies
According to Wikipedia the “day-to-day on-air bias” comes from “an executive memo distributed electronically each morning, addressing what stories will be covered and, often, suggesting how they should be covered.” and that; “To the newsroom personnel responsible for the channel's daytime programming, The Memo is the Bible.” Furthermore, software Wikipedia introduced in 2007 to detect unscrupulous tampering with Wikipedia Articles revealed that ‘Fox News’ had been deliberately whitewashing themselves in various Wikipedia articles.
A prime example of ‘Fake News’ repeatedly broadcast by Fox News in 2015 and 2016, is the Fox News campaign against Muslims in Britain and France, and Fox News frequent attacks on the Mayor of London ever since (and to this day) because he’s a Muslim.
Most famously, and which galvanised the British Public’s hatred towards Trump, was Fox News false claim (supported by Trump) that “Areas of London are ‘no go zones’, where even the police don’t go” (a complete fabrication). This followed other claims by ‘Fox News’ that ‘Birmingham, England’ is also a ‘no go’ city because of Muslims (a false claim), and that parts of Paris are ‘no go’ zones (all false claims).
Fox News Apologizes for 'No-Go Zones' https://youtu.be/gorU1WztIGw
Birmingham, England reacts to Fox News false 'No-Go Zone’ claims https://youtu.be/am2XFnENUFk
This Video Sums it up:-
Fox News In The Racial Smear Zone On ‘No Go Zones’: https://youtu.be/cVOJh9I768E
Yes, good example --- as I said the night time "talk jock shows" are disgusting on all the major media networks. They are produced for the simple-minded, and to promote bias political rhetoric.
Maybe so, but the other News Channels (most certainly CNN) do NOT FAKE the News; Fox News DOES. CNN do put political spin/bias on some of their reporting, sometimes take things out of context, and sometimes misrepresent the facts (sometime out of ignorance when it comes to reporting in current affairs in the UK); but CNN do NOT make up FAKE Stories; whereas Fox News Does.
I tolerate watching CNN because although the often misrepresent the facts about the UK, it is ‘on the whole’ fairly accurate; whereas, News about the UK on Fox News is all too often ‘false’ and sometimes ‘faked’.
The only reason I tolerate watching CNN at all, is to see what propaganda the American Public are being feed by their News Media about Britain, so that I can better understand American ignorance and attitudes of Britain, and the misinformed comments they frequently make about Britain on social platforms like this.
I can appreciate your opinion, but I do not agree with some of it. I for one have never made a derogatory comment about the UK. I would consider it poor to do so. I know little about what is going on in the UK and will leave it to the people that live there to be the experts in their country. I have enough keeping up with what's going on here in America. Aa you can see we have enough on our plate.
Pretty strange that he notes that they misrepresent the facts about the UK but do not do so for the rest of the world. I KNOW that is a false statement. CNN does make things up, all of time, as long as the story they want to present fits their agenda.
I agree CNN does seem to twist a story out of context frequently. Very left-leaning. And yes, I found it odd he felt our media misrepresented the UK , yet did seem to feel they were truthful about American reports. I did not want to question his view, just not worth the effort.
Sharlee and DrMark - A classic example of misunderstandings all around: I can’t speak for how representative or otherwise CNN reports in respect of America because I do NOT live in USA. I can ONLY tell how representative or otherwise CNN (or any other American News Media) is on its reports of the UK (and Europe).
Yes I do know that CNN is very left-leaning in respect to American politics; that’s obvious e.g. very anti Trump: Just as FOX news is very right-wing e.g. supportive of Trump. However, in respect to British politics, CNN is quite ‘Conservative’ e.g. very supportive of the establishment (British Government), but very critical of Socialism (the Labour Party) in the UK.
For clarity I never said that CNN don’t misrepresent the facts for the USA or the rest of the world; I only stated that they do sometimes misrepresent the facts for the UK (and Europe): And therefore I can only assume that CNN also misrepresent the facts for the USA and the rest of the world; but as I don’t live in the USA I can’t judge how accurate or otherwise they report on American events: Only you can tell me that.
I can’t speak for how CNN reports on American News, because I don’t live there and therefore I don’t know first-hand what things are like in the USA. All I can do is say how representative or otherwise CNN (and FOX) are in respect to their reporting of the UK; because I live in the UK: In that respect:-
• As regards the UK: CNN don’t make things up, but they do sometimes twist the facts or take facts ‘out of context’ (changing its meaning) to give a false impression or perception; but I’ve never seen CNN actually make a ‘statement’ about the UK that wasn’t based on truth. So although CNN might misrepresent events in the UK, they don’t go as far as ‘faking’ the news on Britain.
• As regards the UK: Fox News do fake stories about Britain and Europe e.g. outright lies.
As regards your comment Sharlee, I’ve never (as far as I can remember) said that you do make derogatory comments about the UK; but Fox News do frequently make derogatory comments (which are untrue) about Muslims and Socialism in Britain (and Europe), and CNN (while not going as far) do often represent the news about Muslims and Socialism in Britain in a negative light, but they do so by twisting the facts rather than faking them. So there is an element of truth in what CNN reports about the UK (but misrepresented), while Fox New will just ‘fake a story’ about the UK so there is no truth in it.
Consequently, some (not all) Americans do blindly believe what they hear on American News Media about the UK (whether it’s from Fox or CNN), which is reflected in their comments on Social Media.
For examples: A channel like CNN frequently berated Jeremy Corbyn specifically, and the Socialist Parties in General, while being less critical of Theresa May and Boris. Whereas Fox News Target not only Muslims and Socialism in the UK, including the London Mayor; but also berated Theresa May in favour of far right Nationalists in the UK like Nigel Farage and the far-right ERG Group.
One false claim often made by Fox News in the past, which has caused a lot of heated debates with Americans on Social Media, is Fox News claim that British Muslims are subject to sharia law and not British Law; which is ‘fake news’ (a lie).
To stress again: I don’t know how representative or otherwise Fox News and CNN are when reporting on American news; only you can tell me that. However, as I live in the UK, I do know first-hand on how representative or otherwise the American News Media is when it reports on matters concerning the UK.
Thank you for clarifying. As I said I don't approve of talk show journalism. So, I really should not have prolonged our conversation.
This week CNN, as well as MSNBC, has reported over and over and over--- That the National Guard used tear gas and rubber bullets on what they called "peaceful protestors.
The truth is the crowd were throwing many different objects at them, and they stood their ground, and di not use rubber bullets or tear gas to deter the violent behavior. This morning Sec Of Defence Esper gave a statement that clearly stated the news had been reporting a falsehood.
This kind of reporting is unexpected. CNN sought to glorify the protesters, and demonize our National Guard. Propaganda at its best. But, unfortunately the story has been widespread, and as of yet retracted. It will remain yet another incorrect bias report by these two media networks.
I am sorry Sharlee, but I did see it ‘LIVE’, as events unfolded, not just on CNN, but also on UK SKY NEWS. In watching the first 10 minutes of the video you sent of yesterday’s ‘Press Briefing’ by Secretary of Defence Mark Esper, all he said was that “the National Guard’ did not fire tear gas or rubber bullets into the crowed as reported”, but he also did say that the “National Guard were on duty” there at the time. But he didn’t say that tear gas or rubber bullets were not used; if he had then it would have been a cover-up (whitewash), because tear gas and rubber bullets were used on peaceful demonstrators (I saw it live with my own eyes).
When I watched the events unfold on CNN, and then switched over and rewound the recording of those events on UK Sky News (using our TiVo box) the events as I saw them unfold was as follows:-
Taking the fact that neither CNN nor UK Sky News have a crystal ball e.g. they do not know in advance of what is going to happen; and therefore point their cameras at what they think is most appropriate at the time:-
• The cameras were focused on the peaceful protestors facing the line of ‘law enforcement’ Officers.
• At the time the peaceful protestors were standing peacefully with their hands in the air, chanting “Don’t Shoot”, “Don’t Shoot”, when suddenly, and without warning, tear gas and rubber bullets was fired into the mist of the peaceful protestors; one of the rubber bullets missed one of the camera crew by just a few feet (caught on live camera, as it happened).
• Then mounted ‘law enforcement’ Officers pushed the crowd back by force e.g. using the might of horses.
• Five minutes later (once the area had been cleared of protestors) Trump appears, holding a bible in his hand, to make his short speech, and for his photo opp, on the steps of the church.
What I did NOT see was any of the crowd throwing objects at the ‘law enforcement’ Officers, because it was NOT happening where the LIVE Cameras were; although at the time, just minutes before the ‘law enforcement’ Officers fired tear gas rubber bullets into the peaceful protestors, CNN did make a passing comment that they had reports of such events taking place by a small group of activists in that general area; but it wasn’t where the main protestors and cameras were.
The fact remains that ‘Law Enforcement’ Officers DID fire tear gas and rubber bullets into peaceful protestors; because it was caught on camera; but I can’t tell you who those ‘law enforcement’ Officers were e.g. local police or National Guard, because not being American I don’t know the uniforms.
The fact also remains that the peaceful protestors were dispersed (cleared from the area) with the use of tear gas and rubber bullets (and horses), just minutes before Trump made his appearance there. Therefore it strongly suggests that the peaceful protestors were removed from the area by force specifically for the benefit of Trump e.g. so that he could pose in front of a church holding a bible for a photo opp.
1) I usually watch or hear Trump's daily press briefing live.
2) I use an app called Smart News which feeds stories from a wide variety of outlets.
3) I trust NPR.
4) I tune out a lot of crap but, unfortunately, I consider it my duty as a citizen to monitor the president and other elected officials. We are their employers, after all, so we should be fully informed about their job performance and vote them in or out accordingly.
I watch and read a variety of news sources, even those I don't agree with, Kyler. You have to these days of so much partisanship and division.
True, I just wish there was a literal "News" medium. One I could go to for 300 word articles that say nothing other than:
-This is how everyone responded
-The consequences of the response
-Plans for the consequences
If I wanted to watch a damn reality TV show where everyone is bitching and moaning I'd go watch the Kardashians. Hell, I might get the same amount of actual News watching them as well.
Yes I’ve noticed that with CNN, and I assume from your comment that most American News Channels don’t do a summery on the hour? Whereas all the British News Channels do, and I find that useful because I then know whether it’s worth continuing to watch the news or not. CNN is the only American News Channel we get on Cable TV in the UK.
Having taken early retirement, and spending most of my time either in the garden or my workshop, normally (when there aren’t major events in the world or the UK), I usually just listen to the 2 minute summary of the News (News Headlines) on the hour on the radio e.g. I keep the radio on in the garden and my workshop for background music while I’m pottering around.
When there are major events, such as wars in the Middle East, immigration crises, major natural disasters etc., then I will pre-record the news from several of the News Channels and start scanning through each one in turn (using the fast-forward button) as appropriate, so as to stop and listen to just the relevant bits. Virgin Media, who owns the Cable TV in the UK, commissioned TiVo to make modified TiVo boxes for its cable TV service, one of the modifications being the addition of six receivers so that its customers can record six TV programs while simultaneously watching a 7th pre-recorded to the hard drive.
The main News Channels I record, for comparison (when there are major events worth following) includes:-
• BBC News
• British Sky News
• Al Jazeera News
I prefer watching the News from the Telly, rather than reading it in the Newspapers, because News broadcast on British TV are heavily Regulated by the Government to help ensure the news is non-bias and balanced; whereas the newspapers are not Regulated. And I certainly wouldn’t rely on the Internet for news because far too much of it is misinformation, propaganda and fake news.
The reason I include CNN is to gauge what misinformation Americans are being fed about Britain; albeit CNN reporting on Britain is fairly accurate most of the time it does all too often add political spin to support the establishment, and sometimes give misinformation about the UK (sometime deliberately, sometimes out of ignorance).
I watch Euronews (a French Channel broadcasted in English) to keep in touch with current affairs across the EU.
And I watch Al Jazeera News as it gives a reliable independent coverage of news events across the world, including major events in the UK e.g. better coverage of riots in Britain that the British Broadcasters may tone down.
I might occasionally also watch the news on ITV, C4 & C5; especially C4 & C5 as they can be quite maverick at times. But unlike the BBC & Sky, none of these Broadcasters have 24/7 News Channels, so they just do a news summery periodically throughout the day between their other programs. Although C4 & C5 will occasionally do an hour long News (Current Affairs) Documentary, and when they do it’s often on a subject, such as environmental issues, which can galvanise public opinion and make the Government take action.
If I do resort to reading the Newspapers, I’m rather picky in which ones I read e.g. I’ll only give credence to the Quality Press (regardless to their politics), because apart from their political spin they do generally report honestly; these including (and their target audience):-
• The Times/Financial Times (Conservative)
• Telegraph (Conservative); nicknamed the Torygraph by Socialists
• The Independent (Liberal Democrats), and
• The Guardian (Middle Class Labour voters)
The British newspapers I do NOT read include the Mirror (Labour supporting newspaper whose target audience is the uneducated working class), and ‘The Sun’ (Conservative supporting newspaper whose target audience is the uneducated working class); both use propaganda as their main tool.
And I certainly don’t read the Mail (Daily Mail) as it is renowned for its fake news.
A very detailed comment, and I thank you!
As for the news summary at the top of the hour they do tend to do that but it is usually more of an extremely inflated description of what they're going to be talking about. They so often inflate and exaggerate what they're going to talk about that you'll feel they didn't discuss much of what they said they would.
I have a lot of issues with the BBC, and pretty much all foreign news sources. Our President seems to dominate most of your news, much like when the Royal family steps in some dog poop and we have to hear about it for two weeks as if we care, except most of the time your news is saying the same thing CNN is, with a lot more oomph to the insults.
It is very hard to find legitimate, fair, and impartial news sources.
Interesting you should mention the BBC, because I understand from a American contact that I frequently discuss international affairs with that there is a BBC American, and the reporting style that he gives me from that Channel do not seem to reflect the British BBC News.
He has tried to send me links to the BBC America but I can’t view any of them e.g. blocked from viewing in the UK; and likewise, some of the British BBC links I’ve sent him, he can’t see because they are blocked from viewing in the USA?
So we can only conclude that in America the BBC operates like any other American TV channel, whereas in the UK the BBC is heavily regulated by the Government e.g. they have to be impartial, politically neutral, balanced an unbiased, just like any other British TV News Channel.
In fact, getting onto your point of “Our President seems to dominate most of your news”, in fact in the UK that isn’t the case. Yes he does when he says something stupid like suggesting people should take disinfectant internally to kill covid-19; but in Britain, on British New Channels, Trump isn’t the main news items, its British news that’s the main news items.
In the UK, the headlines on the hour on the British News Channels, is just that e.g. 5 or 10 seconds for each item, to give the headline (but little detail), generally in the order that they will appear over the next hour. Useful, because if an item is listed last, you know you can go off and do something else for the next 40 minutes, and come back later to get the story details.
Perhaps I'm looking at the wrong BBC, then. All the BBC articles that pop up for me (perhaps biased by algorithms) are from "bongland" as I like to refer to it, and each one is really anecdotally charged. I've never had a BBC article blocked for me, but then again I often run a VPN.
An interesting dynamic I'm going to have to look further into in the future, perhaps do an article about it from an algorithm standpoint.
It would be good if you can find such an article that you consider anecdotally charged and send me a link along with your critique of the article e.g. so that we are on the same page (understanding). If it’s from the BBC’s website then those links do work quite well internationally most of the time (I've only ever had one issue with that route when my American contact (from New York) tried to send me something that was politically sensitive from the BBC website, and that article wasn't available to me in the UK?).
Where we do get the issues isn’t with text articles on the web (their news website), but their British TV Broadcasts which they upload to their YouTube Channel e.g. it’s the British TV Channels that are heavily Regulated; while some of those links seem to work in the USA, some don’t (at least to my American contact). So I’ve given up on sending him links to the BBC videos on YouTube. I think it’s largely to do with licensing, as I don’t get the same problem from any of the other British News Channels e.g. both the BBC & C4 are Government owned, and while C4 gets its income from Advertising the BBC is financed by the Government through the TV licence.
In trying to think where you may be getting the impression from that the BBC (British) is anecdotally charged. One thought that might be worth exploring, that occurs to me, is Faisal Islam as an example.
Faisal Islam was originally (from 2004) the ‘economics editor’ for C4, he switched to becoming the ‘political editor’ for British Sky News from 2014 until 2019; and now he’s a ‘political and economics’ journalist for the BBC.
To put it into context, under British Regulations, a TV Presenter in the Studio cannot give a personal opinion; they can only report the facts; and if they over step the mark the aggrieved party/parties will be quick to complain to the ‘Regulators’. Channels in breach of the Regulations can be fined, will be asked to issue an apology or retraction on air, and or worst case scenario have their broadcasting licence (franchise/charter) revoked/not renewed.
But what the studio presenters can do is to ask their ‘political/economics’ journalist e.g. Faisal Islam to give his opinion; but they must also ensure the views of all parties are aired as well, which typically means allowing different politicians to give their side of the story, and if it’s an Industrial dispute or environmental campaign then also interview the Trade Unions or the Environmentalist group; and ensure that all side gets equal air time.
So while on the BBC website, an article may seem anecdotally charged, on TV it’s a far more complex mix, of which Faisal Islam’s report is just a part of.
However, one way the BBC can be biased on the TV News, while not breaching the Regulations, is just simply not to cover a story in any depth that might be politically sensitive for the Government. Which is why I also watch the British Sky News; because if the BBC skips on it Sky usually don’t, and vice versa. And if both do seem to be under reporting an important story; then C4 & C5 are good at covering it, because they tend to be more maverick anyway.
I’d be interested in your views/feedback.
I'll be honest and say I've lost much of my interest in this topic as time quickly passed by, and that my statements are perhaps unfair as it concerns the BBC. The last time I actively tried to follow the BBC was in the days when Brexit was dominating conversation, and at that time it seemed to be quite anecdotally charged. I don't think I've actually used it since then, because it doesn't really show up anymore.
The next time I actually have a BBC report show up that seems anecdotally charged, I'm going to have to write an article on it and whatever topic it is discussing.
One thing I didn’t mention previously, which I like about Euronews, is their ‘No Comment’ slot. Periodically throughout the day Euronews put on a five minute slot called ‘No Comment’, which is where you see video footage of some major event in the world that day e.g. floods, earthquake, riots, immigrants trying to get from Mexico to the USA, but no verbal or written commentary to go with the video. So you can watch something happening for five minutes, and make up your own mind on what you think of it, without being influenced by a reporter or presenter making any comments about it: I think the ‘No Comments’ slots are rather cool.
That does sound rather cool, and something that would be fun to look in to. Thank you for this info!
Some short extract from recent Euronews ‘No Comment’ during the pandemic:-
• Mass influx of flamingos turn Navi Mumbai into a pink playground https://youtu.be/T8tEpSZYka0
• Some of World's cities as you've likely never seen them before.… https://youtu.be/bG6kculMx00
• Ramadan under lockdown: Aerial images show Mecca completely empty https://youtu.be/8f4F1aa2fds
• Protests over climate change continue in Berlin https://youtu.be/Lz9KUXBEAx8
On YouTube the clips are between 50 seconds and 1 minute 50 seconds; on euronews itself on TV they can be much longer.
I do Google News and Bing News and am open to suggestions. I tried MSN News, but their website was such a mess that I gave up on them.
Sometimes I just shut off all the news and head over to podcasts like the Joe Rogan Experience, and a lot of the time they deliver news before it even happens. He is always boasting on his show how "people are turning to me (Joe) over watching regular news. I guess people just prefer the extended format of a podcast to all the arguing on the news."
In some ways I do agree with him, podcasts provide me with much more fair and impartial, factual information. Reliable podcasts are so hard to find, though.
There is a lot of conflicting news information out there. I, at first, was just doing research on my own trying to get to the truth or not but that was too time-consuming. Now I just listen to local news stations and listen to my state's (Pennsylvania) news briefing at 2 pm. As long as I know what's going on in my state and area, that's all I need. I'm tired of Trump and his controversial statements so try to avoid anything in that area.
True, if more of us spent more time focusing on our immediate communities it would probably reduce the vitriol and discrimination overall. A valid and important point you've expressed! At the same time, it takes the many to keep the nation informed, and without at least a few to do so in a fair and impartial manner then we may as well just have government subsidized news be the only news available.
News can never be objective especially on TV because the channels have to worry about their TRP ratings
That is certainly true in the USA. In the USA ‘Ratings’ seem to be the prime driving force for TV.
However, it’s not so in the UK; that’s not to say ‘ratings’ aren’t important in the UK, it’s just that they are not the prime driving force, and not so important in Britain; for a number of reasons:-
The main Reason is the Government:-
1. The four main TV Companies, pre Cable and Satellite TV, BBC, ITV, C4 & C5 (of which the BBC & C4 are government owned) are all under contract with the government to provide a specific program schedule to cater for all genres for all ages; regardless to popularity e.g. a legal commitment to show ‘arts and culture’ programs for ‘n’ number of hours per week (at a reasonable hour), even though cultural programs may only appeal to a small section of the population. The Government’s ‘Charters with the BBC & C4, and Franchise Agreement with ITV & C5 is quite detailed and specific e.g. C4 is not allowed to make any of its own programs, it has to commission the programs specifically from the ‘arts’ industry which would normally struggle to get funding, and would normally be heavily reliant on charity.
2. Also, in the UK it is illegal for a British TV Company, broadcasting in Britain to be politically biased, with Independent Government Watchdogs set up; which the Public, Pressure Groups and politicians can complain to if a British TV channel oversteps the mark.
Consequently, unlike America, where a TV Series can be axed mid-season (and all too often is) because the ratings are low, or because they drop; in the UK the BBC & ITV will support the financing of an unpopular TV Series through to the end; and sometimes it pays off e.g. because it gains, or regains, popularity before the Season ends, and then warrants making a further series.
Another factor is the ethos in the UK is different e.g. the European concept that ‘Society’ should be based on ‘People before Profit’, rather than the American way of ‘Profit before People’. In this context, one of the biggest TV providers in the UK is ‘FreeVIew’ and FreeSat’. Every TV manufactured for the UK market have receivers built into them specifically to receive FreeView and FreeSat, so that anyone can watch a wide range of TV Channels (including a lot of the popular ones) for FREE, if they don’t want to subscribe to cable TV (Virgin Media) or satellite TV (SKY).
The TV Companies that finance this Free Service are the BBC, ITV, C4 and SKY; and their motto is:-
“The principle of ensuring universal and free access to the best of the nation’s content, for all UK viewers.”
What is Freeview Play? https://youtu.be/R_N1rmFr-p0
However, it’s not so in the UK; that’s not to say ‘ratings’ aren’t important in the UK, it’s just that they are not the prime driving force, and not so important in Britain; for a number of reasons:-
Are you sure about that one?
First you have the Daily Mail and co. Which backed Boris and Brexit all the way.
The BBC is to me a highly capitalistic broadcasting company.
If I look at the BBC 1 of today (Wednesday 29th march) I see:
Homes under the Hammer, Bargain Hunt, Escape to the country, The customer is always right. - all about buying and selling.
BBC 2 Bargain Hunt, The customer is always right, Flog it,
I could go on...
To me as a European the BBC backed Brexit, it did not take a neutral stand but had the opinion of Conservative Government in the majority of documentaries about the subject.
As said. I read the Guardian. And the Guardian openly supported Labour during the election campaign.
Please Nathan, can you give me a Newspaer who was neutral during Ellection time?
“The principle of ensuring universal and free access to the best of the nation’s content, for all UK viewers.” - commercial slogan.
Sorry, I had the BBC in high regard, but it's not the top of the world broadcasting company anymore. It's also using click bates on it's BBC News websites.
I go often to London and have a lot of friends there. But if I compare Londen with Amsterdam, London is far more Americanized then Amsterdam or Madrid. And so looks the news with the Sun, Daily Mail etc. to me. Not really difference with Fox.
In Holland, the most rightwing paper "De Telegraaf" is a decent newspaper compared with the Daily Mail.
Maybe my view is wrong, and I hope it is as I really like the UK, but it's for a long time on a slippery slope thanks to Murdoch and consort...
Peterstreep, you are 100% right as regards newspapers, and the web, in the UK; they are not regulated (Freedom of the Press); but TV, which is what my post was all about is heavily regulated in the UK.
That doesn't mean a TV channel can't have political influence through 'selective reporting' while not breaching the Regulations e.g. the BBC News (on their TV News Channel) frequently under reported or didn't cover stories on Brexit that would have been unhelpful to the Brexit campaign; while SKY News (on their TV News Channel) often picked up on those stories.
Yes, when it comes to Newspapers (which unlike TV in the UK) has 'Freedom of the Press', being a staunch Socialist, and very pro-European, I too prefer the Guardian, and I never read the Mail because it is renowned for 'fake news'.
However, the UK government is currently working on a white paper, entitled ‘Online Harms’, which in the words of the ‘White Paper’:-
“Will set out a new framework for ensuring disinformation is tackled effectively, while respecting freedom of expression and promoting innovation”.
In the words of the ‘Report’ published last year:-
“The age of inadequate self-regulation must come to an end. The rights of the citizen need to be established in statute, by requiring the tech companies to adhere to a code of conduct written into law by Parliament, and overseen by an independent regulator.”
One of several options being considered by the UK Government is for Ofcom (who regulates TV & Radio) have their powers extended to also regulate on-line news.
For more detailed information: https://www.loc.gov/law/help/fake-news/uk.php
There are a lot of themes running through this post...
Free market vs state-sponsored for instance. This always surprises me.
Socialism was always accused of giving money to the people without the people doing anything for it... like the dole. Or owning a TV station.
Strange thing is that in a highly capitalistic world the Government is giving millions to coops and farmers, without them doing anything for it. This is the purest form of state sponsorship. Bailing out a bank or an airline... is a seen as good and capitalistic. Bailing out ordinary people is seen as communistic and bad.
The BBC can be seen as state-owned. So are most of the Dutch television stations. And so are lots of stations in Spain and Germany. The government gives money to these stations. And I bet the same happens in the US.
Spain has an amazing good television station called La Sexta. It's officially a commercial station but with incredible high-quality programs.
And with Radio Tres, it's the best music station I've heard for a long time. They play 10 min. songs without a break!! And have no commercials whatsoever.
I don't watch TV anymore, If I want to watch something I use the internet on the laptop.
This whole Lock-down thing is good for one thing. Reflection.
And that is what we should do. The news often wants your attention just as bad as Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp, Twitter, etc.
This is a great time to think. What do I want, is the job I have the right one, Am I happy. Do I really need all the stuff I have etc?
The whole rat race before the COVID was great for the machinery of coops. But not for the people.
I read an article in the Guardian a while ago. They had asked the employers of banks who sold those scam products if they did not think about the moral aspect of their work. Selling products that would ruin the lives of thousands. The answer was: We had no time to think about the moral implications as we worked like hell with only 5 hours of sleep. Work, eat, sleep. No time for reflection. And that's exactly where they (the Amazon's of this world) want us to be.
It is not just the fear of economics why they want us to go back to the factory as soon as possible. But the fear of us, people, to start to rethink and organize ourselves and to find an alternative for this rat race and consumerism.
This lockdown is a great thing in this respect. And I hope we will change and come out differently.
Stop the rat race and bail out the workers is my advice for after the Lockdown.
A very good and enlightening post; and an enjoyable read peterstreep.
I’ve never heard of the American Government giving money to TV & Radio Stations in the USA. The USA seems to be a very Laissez-faire Government; but perhaps our American colleagues can enlighten us on that aspect?
It’s not just the BBC that is State owned in the UK, C4 is also; but the main differences between the two TV Companies is that while the BBC gets its funding via the TV Licence, which is set by the Government (hence no Adverts on BBC), C4 gets its funding from Advertising.
Another difference between the BBC and C4 is that the BBC Charter (written by the Government), and ITV’s Franchise (written by the Government) are almost identical so that the two are forced to compete with each other e.g. the concept that competition is healthy for stimulating the production of good quality programming. While C4’s Charter (written by the Government) prohibits C4 from making its own programmes, and instructs it to commission their programming to be produced by the ‘Arts Council’ etc., who are non-profit organisations and often struggle for funding. Unlike the BBC & ITV, C4 & C5 can be quite maverick TV Channels.
We still watch TV, primarily as ‘family quality time’ in the evening e.g. when we can sit down together as a family for a few hours and watch some good programs on TV and a film together on the ‘big screen’ e.g. a 55 inch 4K TV with surround sound (almost like going to the cinema). There is a lot of trash on the TV (and lots of repeats), but in the UK there are also a lot of good TV Channels to choose from, and we also have a large collection of Blu-ray, so there’s never any shortage of good entertainment to watch on the telly.
Yep, referencing the article you read in the Guardian about banks who sold scam products; I don’t know if you did know that the banks in the UK got their comeuppance for it e.g. misspelling PPI (Personal Protective Insurance). Prior to the 1990’s banks used to add PPI to the repayments on loans automatically, without asking people whether they wanted the insurance cover, and not explaining the details to people. Then in the 1990’s individuals started to take their banks to court to claim the insurance payments back, and although the banks fought each case vigorously, they lost every case. Eventually the Government ordered the banks to honour each claim made, and pay out automatically when asked. In the end the banks ended up having to pay back £36 billion to the British public.
I think the lockdown has been a lot easier on the British Public than Americans because the British Government is paying 80% of the wages of those who can’t work during the lockdown; while in America, when employees are furloughed they have to claim on the doll.
Also, like most European’s the lockdown is bringing out the best in the British Public e.g. the ‘wartime spirit’; which from what I’ve seen, seems to be largely lacking in the USA.
And of course the hero of the day today is ‘Captain Tom’, now promoted to Colonel Tom, for raising over £31 million ($40 million) in donations for the NHS from the British Public on his 100th birthday.
Captain Tom Moore's 100th birthday - how he inspired the nation: https://youtu.be/n0tRq9j6xmM
Captain Tom Moore 100th birthday flypast and message from Boris Johnson: https://youtu.be/SAG_Vr86iyI
The Queen promotes Captain Tom Moore to honorary colonel: https://youtu.be/xYu1aHi5It0
Great to read your example about the Banks paying back to the public people.
It's also amazing what the UK government is doing for self-employed people. The torries almost become a bit socialist...
Yes, I read about Captain Tom. and it is wonderful that he raised over a 31 milion for the NHS. BUT...this money should have come from the government in the first place!
Hopefully, the whole Covid thing has put the selling off (and out) of the NHS to the "Big Farma" and US in the long run...And hopefully Labour can use this crisis to push the conservatives into spending in the NHS and schools.
The Lockdown is Severe here in Spain. And it does not help that the Government (Labour is in power) does have to argue everything they do with the extreme right (VOX) and the right (PP). It's tough for them.
Lot's of people died in care homes that were privatized. And neglected over the years. Expensive but no service.
Luckily the Healthcare system in Spain is good and also nationalized like the NHS in the UK. Hopefully, it stays that way. For instance, I take medicine for my epilepsy. And pay only €1.50 a month for my drugs. (dread to think what I should have paid in the US, for the same thing!!)
I also see lots of creative initiatives through Zoom, Facebook, and Instagram. People making music, and art. There is a strong sense of we are all in it together and we will pull through. Just as you described. Which is a great thing?
They are working on a universal income kind of thing. But it does not really carry much weight and is still below the bare minimum. But it is a start. Spain is hit hard and is still coping on a day to day basis. What to do after the crisis is difficult to say.
And shame on the EU who can't get it's act together. North vs South vs West...
One thing is sure. Nature loves the Lock-Down. And it is the best thing so far to stop the bigger threat, the Climate Crisis.
thanks for the links, Nathan. Makes me smile in a way.
Yes, that is mind-blowing, I’d never thought I’d see the day when a Tory Government would so vigorously pursue ‘Socialist’ like policies; and what was another turn up for the books was that Boris Johnson (Conservative Prime Minister) formulated his policy just days after holding confidential talks with the ‘Trade Unions’?
I agree, the money for the NHS should have come from the government in the first place. Ever since the formation of the NHS by the Labour (Socialist) Government in 1948 the Conservative Party has always had disdain for the NHS because it’s pure socialism, and have always underfunded it and tried to undermine it whenever they were in power; but were powerless to dismantle it because the NHS has won the hearts and minds of the British Public, including Conservative voters. Any overt attack on the NHS by Conservative Governments would have been political suicide; which is why both Theresa May and Boris Johnson have emphatically told Trump that the NHS is NOT for Sale, even though Trump is keen to get his hands on it, and is persistent that “everything is on the table” for negotiations.
Yep, this Coronavirus pandemic has warmed the hearts of the Conservative Party towards ‘Universal Healthcare’, as they appreciate its true value; so I’m reasonably confident that the future of NHS, including adequate funding is now assured, regardless to which party is in power.
Yep, I know the lockdown in Spain and Italy is severe; a lot tougher than the UK, just as the UK’s lockdown is a lot tougher than the USA’s. I admire the spirt of the Italian’s and the Spanish, as they socialise with each other from their balconies, the music and singing is so inspiring; very much the ‘wartime spirit’.
We don’t have quite so much of the community spirit from the balconies in Britain, because most British people live in houses; but it has become ‘traditional’ that every Thursday evening at 8pm the British public in lockdown step outside, onto their doorsteps, and applause in support of the NHS; a most wonderful moment of solidarity.
Heart-warming Scenes as Millions 'Clap For The NHS' Across the UK: https://youtu.be/KQREw_3KH-E
It’s interesting to hear about the political divide in Spain. For the past four years the UK has been a divided nation over Brexit, and will continue to be a divided nation (once the pandemic is over) for decades to come, until we eventually re-join the EU again.
But, on the issue of the pandemic, the British nation is united, people and politics; makes a refreshing change. Both the Socialist Government in Scotland (the SNP), and Labour, and all the other Socialist Political Parties in the UK, are in full support of our Conservative Government, and giving it their full backing. The only other times all the opposing political parties have united against a common cause being the two world wars and the Great Depression of the 1930’s; on those occasions the different political parties abandon party politics and formed a joint ‘National Government’ to fight a common enemy.
I too am disappointed the EU hasn’t been more proactive; but I’m sure (knowing how the EU works) that it will take stock from this experience and formulate some strategy for similar events in future.
Yes, nature does love the lockdown, and it certainly is good for the environment, and a positive step in protecting the planet from the big threat of Climate Change. Just days after the lockdown in the UK animals started appearing on the streets, one spectacular example being the wild mountain goats in North Wales invading the empty streets of Llandudno.
Goats take over empty Welsh streets as residents observe coronavirus lockdown: https://youtu.be/xcDvM3PdVsc
I don't really subscribe to any one news source. I find a story I think is interesting or important then I research it in different media. It's interesting how you can have one story reported several different ways. The same facts but a different presentation.
I dismiss stories with "unnamed sources" and those that have hype in the beginning and then the facts at the very end. I'm of the opinion that all news sources are corrupt, but with a little work, you can find the facts and that is what's important.
It is unfortunate that it has to be that way though, as I'd be confident in saying that most of the population won't go any further than the first few sentences they read or hear from the first source with their research. It is a rare and special few who take the time to dig.
Good to hear; I wish more people bothered to fact-check.
Before I retired, one of my duties was ‘Report Writing’, and any Recommendations I made from my Conclusions had to be backed with facts that were referenced. And referencing from newspapers wouldn’t have been good enough; I would need reliable ‘source’ data: Source Referencing was something I was taught to do when I was studying for my exams at college for my qualifications in ‘Business Administration’.
If I didn’t reference source my Report properly, senior management, who were well educated themselves (often with university degrees) would just reject My Report.
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