George Orwell famously said journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations. In a world festooned with PR exercises and reputation management, was Mr Orwell overly cynical, or was he well ahead of his time? With print media’s business model in free fall, newspaper proprietors are increasingly desperate to find ways to ensure financial viability. The problem with this approach is that corporate interests can and often do trump the interests of readers. Joining us to discuss how free the UK press really is are the lecturer in journalism and media studies at Birkbeck College, Justin Schlosberg, and the editor of Open Media at openDemocracy, James Cusick.
Has the Guardian newspaper provided unconditional support for the White Helmets? We take a look at journalist George Monbiot’s role as gatekeeper for imperial power and an apologist for al-Qaeda and its affiliates in Syria.
The Cambridge Analytica revelations are not proof of some internet voodoo magic, they have merely demonstrated, perhaps for the first time, how online advertising actually works. Except that, according to UK consultant, Matt Muir, we don’t even really know if it works.
Over the past week, the Guardian has engaged in a variety of personal attacks on a number of independent journalists and academics – those who criticise the paper’s support for the ‘White Helmets’; a so-called ‘humanitarian’ organisation that operates in ‘rebel-held’ areas of Syria. There are two versions of this story, but the media only wants you to hear one of them…
You know there’s something deeply wrong with the state of the global economy when American venture capitalist, Nick Hanauer, reaches consensus with Jeremy Corbyn, that if capitalism doesn’t change fundamentally, it will destroy itself.