Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Media Wars


A new media venture began tonight - ironically on the day that Google announced its takeover of another unexpected but huge internet success, the Youtube site. The new venture is a web-based tv channel - 18 Doughty Street - which broadcasts politics shows each evening only on the web. The avowed aim of the Doughty Street founders is to challenge old media. Two of the leading spirits behind the venture - Tim Montgomerie and Iain Dale - are both prominent Conservative bloggers (their sites are linked at the side) who believe that the blogosphere is increasingly able to challenge the 'established' media agenda.

It is too early to see whether the Doughty Street channel will succeed on the founders' own terms - i.e. effectively challenge the dominance of mainstream media as our principal source of news and analysis. Their programmes, on tonight's evidence, are chatty (well, it's talk tv after all), and are very much an audio-visual version of the presenters' blogs, but with more time to fill by the chatting! It is certainly too early to be predicting the demise of mainstream media. Where millions watch terrestrial news channels or read the main print media, mere thousands log into the most popular blogs, whilst fewer than hundreds will frequent the vast majority of others. The current influence of the socalled blogosphere has been in the way it has persuaded mainstream media to latch onto some of its stories (for example, the John Prescott scandals originated on the blogs). On the whole, stories don't have credibility until they have been broadcast or written up in the mainstream media. Even the founders of 18 Doughty Street have been keen enough, in their various blogs, to trumpet their appearances on programmes such as 'Newsnight', 'Today' and'Channel 4 News', suggesting they know only too well where the news agenda is set.

Nevertheless, the web does represent an unregulated source of free speech and opinion. I am increasingly fond of online magazine The First Post, whose edition today carries the provocative story of a terror plot in Blackburn that was unreported because it didn't involve Muslim terrorists. Their contention, that the main media conspires to promote attitudes that fit a particular world-view which is not necessarily accurate, carries some force. (Their report is here).

Even very localised media can have its problems. SGS has its own monopolistic publication - Sporting Glory - whose editors, it seems, are not always as one; this writer witnessed an alarming display of disunity between prima donna editors only this evening. Can the school's much loved paper survive??!! And is it loved because it is alone??

5 comments:

Aftab said...

I know who Occultus is!

c h daly said...

ok, i admit it! I am occultus, but i had you all going, didn't I? I don't kno whow you can abuse the most sucessful publication in the school like that, i don't see anyone else stepping up...

C H Daly said...

Firstly to the moron who attempted to pose as me, would the right honourable gentleman kindly piss off. For conspiracy-theorists this embarassingly-weak attempt at immitating me is not Occultus but alas a mere moron.

Moreover, our Spanish friend has also been unmasked somewhat more easily than I discovered the indentity of Occultus. As a point to the non-politics set infidels who made startling witty comments under the guise of the "operator" and the "adminstrator" on a few days ago, kindly also piss off if you have nothing interesting to say and yes, I know who you are too!

After all that ranting I now have to make the following statement in response to GM's allegations over a mythical rift between the WTSSG editorial team:

"I would like to come out in staunch defence of the fantastic charitable publication that is What's the Story: Sporting Glory. I find recent blog posts quite offensive over the integrity of WTSSG and it's place in the public eye. The magazine that has run for over eight years now is a brilliant resource for the school and as well as providing entertainment, education and notice; gives a sizeable sum of money to charity each year from it's distribution sales. As for the laughable allegations over any "alarming display of disunity", I do not wish to merit this sheer nonsense with any comments but will say only that it is complete hearsay, claptrap and drivle. A completely unfounded statement that is attempting merely to tarnish the good name of WTSSG and deserves to be shoved into the Conservative back-bench along with all good public sewage."

warchild said...

c h daly/occultus (if that is your REAL name!) will you please kindly take your OWN finger out of whichever orifice it happens to be in at the moment.

warchild has no intentions of being unmasked so easily... as for gm's comments about needing to seek help? Perhaps your poorly misguided political views should have you running to seek help... conservatives are hoodwinked... the veil needs to be lifted so they can see... the light at the end of the tunnel remains distant... but it is coming..

Our scripture for the day is...
"Beware false prophets! The time for redemption is nigh! Isohunts has perpetrated falsehoods again"

the REAL warchild

Anonymous said...

Haha, he can't spell. Is he on the editorial team? I mean that one two up from me.