Thursday, 27 January 2011

What are you looking at?

Once again the world (or rather what the BBC and Guardian choose to call the world) has erupted into a spasm of indignant, righteous screams about "phone hacking". Every has-been politician and forgotten celebrity is hastening to the nearest lawyer claiming they've been "hacked" and that this is a gross interference in their privacy. The media will love it, the celebrities will love it, the BBC will get the chance to be all smug and pompous about Rupert Murdoch and the world's real news stories will get relegated to secondary pages.

It really annoys me that this episode - a sordid chapter in the hideously sordid world of the mass media (and please don't try to tell be that BBC and Guardian journalists haven't been partial to the odd piece of illicitly obtained celebrity or political gossip - of course they have) - has meant we are not looking in the right places, talking about the right things. While the BBC regales us with the evils of Murdoch on every bulletin, we're missing the robbing of savings through inflation, the upheaval in the Maghreb as governments totter before the mob, floods and famine - the real world news.

Our understanding of the world. The task of providing information to the people that the BBC supposedly cares about. This is being sacrificed on the altar of the Corporation's campaign to protect its market share from BSkyB and News International. this isn't about the politics of Westminster, it's about a great corporate battle between these two big players in UK media. I know what I'm looking at.

What are you looking at?