If you keep clicking on clickbait, sharing without checking and liking stories that match your own prejudices and pre-conceived ideas then you are responsible for fake news.
I get asked for advice on journalism courses, so I thought it easiest to post it here. There are three journalism accreditation bodies in the UK (alphabetically):
All three now validate and accredit courses that are multimedia to some extent. Continue reading
Journalism has got harder. Journalists have to contact more people, more often, using email, phone and sometimes social media, such as Twitter or LinkedIn, just to get an answer. And this is all for the same money, or often less.
More PRs are barriers to information rather than enablers. It takes longer and more effort to get fewer, less interesting answers. And then you get hassled for writing the truth. Continue reading
52% of the UK population do not vote
David Cameron’s Conservative government secured the backing of 24.4% of the 2015 electorate and just 17.6% of the UK population.
More than four out five people in the UK did not vote Conservative. More than half the UK population (52%) did not (or could not) vote at all. Continue reading
FCA press office contacts
I don’t believe the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) press office answered my questions at all. Do you? My email correspondence is in this blog.
The FCA is the super-regulator for the financial services industry. It took a public pounding from MPs and a published report last year over briefing a journalist too much information too early. Perhaps it is being over-cautious now.
There’s a less email-heavy version of this on my business website Wheal Associates (new window), which includes more on the FCA’s problems last year. This post contains the detail of my correspondence. Continue reading
Whose points were they?
A Leveson inquiry into the Chris Huhne and Vicky Pryce speeding points case would recommend statutory regulation of all married couples.
The call would be backed by academics who were no longer married or who no longer drove (or both) and a celebrity campaign group called Driven Off. And the Leveson report would state Pryce’s name was Price (with an i) changed to sound posh – because an un-verified Wikipedia page said so. Continue reading
I had a letter from a graduate that was just so appalling – they invariably are – that I started to write to tell him. My wife said the criticism might be enough to push him over the edge so I stopped myself.
She’s probably right. But how is he ever to know that he is getting it so wrong? As his errors were similar to errors I see in these sorts of begging letters all the time I wondered if I should share the lessons. Of course I am an arrogant know-it-all, but this is what I would have sent: Continue reading
The press must be able to shine a light on politicians
I have written to my MP, Joan Ruddock, asking for her support for press freedom against proposals for legislation to introduce a regulator. The text is below:
Dear Ms Ruddock
Please do not vote for any legislation to establish a regulator of the press. There has been a long-established principle that the state should not intervene in the freedom of the press and this remains important.
Please stick to principles. Please do not vote for statutory regulation (or regulation with a statutory backstop) just because the Labour Party is in opposition and wants to give the government a bloody nose (as it did recently over the zero budget increase for Europe). This is too important for yah-boo politics. Continue reading
Leveson reading a “trusted friend”?
Leveson’s report includes just 456 words on magazines, if you exclude the case studies on OK, Heat and Hello. It makes just two references to the “4,765 business to business magazines” and barely touches too on the “515 consumer magazines” he mentions.
Leveson does say: “Whereas newspapers are essentially ephemeral, and understandably have developed a reputation as tomorrow’s fish and chip wrappers, magazines are kept and referred to because they are considered to be a “trusted friend”.
He also says: “Most of these consumer magazines are specialist interest titles of varying sorts and are not engaged in the sort of news and current affairs reporting, or reporting on individuals, with which the Inquiry is primarily concerned.”
So the question for Leveson is, why try to regulate them? The question for the NUJ is why they called for huge swathes of their honest and ethical members to be treated like criminals?
Leveson, wrong, wrong and then wrong again
The press were fascinated by Leveson today but the public were interested in the simultaneous event going on in court where SAS soldier Danny Nightingale was released – after a press campaign to free him. Hurrah for the press.
Leveson did not ask for examples of good journalism, only bad, so that’s all he got. The Leveson report is an example of biased research and reporting. A statutory regulator would fine him and demand a right of reply. Continue reading