Flat Earth News
Nick Davies must be a brave man… He has launched a devastating attack on not only the state of modern journalism, but also on the basic integrity of many of those involved in the profession. And this from a major paper journalist who must now have made a lot of enemies within his industry. I’m sure you have noticed how very similar versions of the same stories are posted online by apparently independent and well funded news organisations – especially in America for news outside the US. This book explains why, and how the facts of these clone stories are often unchecked by the trusted organisations putting them into the public domain.
The book also covers the pernicious effects and influence of PR and also, perhaps most depressingly, the outright lying of major newspapers who are left barely challenged by the Press Complaints Commission and whom average people cannot afford to defend themselves against.
All of it seems to root back to money. Selling more papers through sensationalism, pandering to racism and lying; cost cutting exercises that have reduced the number of journalists available to cover an ever increasing number of stories, leaving them without the time to check their sources properly. Very depressing, but a fantastic inoculation against the effects of this ‘disease’. The book will help you take a more critical view of what you read, see and hear and understand the motivations that lie behind much of the news we are fed. The final summary provides some ideas about where good journalism can still be found – basically it exists where advertising does not – or where reporting is guided (or protected) by highly ethical ‘old school’ editorial policies