Privacy Persecutions

December 1, 2009 at 9:59 pm (Media issues) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

Mr Justice David Eady, the High Court Judge who presided over a number of high-profile court cases which turned media law on its head, today said that judges who made these decisions were becoming a target for the media to vent their anger at.

Speaking at a conference by the human rights organisation Justice and legal publishers Sweet and Maxwell, Eady said he had been subjected to personal attacks and abuse by the media after his decisions in some high-profile privacy cases, especially the Max Mosely case.

This issue came to a head at the Society of Editors Conference last year, when Daily Mail editor, Paul Dacre, attacked Eady for creating a common law on privacy. Dacre and the Daily Mail had previously been ordered to pay a massive £60,000 to Mr Mosley after exposing him for his tendency for sadomasochistic sex sessions and implying there was a Nazi theme to the encounters.

Dacre had obviously been lashing out as a scorned man who had been firmly put in his place.  But his attack was an incredibly personal one on Eady.

But Eady made a valid point in his speech today. Parliament’s lack of willingness to legislate on the issue of privacy and the media has forced judges, particularly Eady, who is the expert on the matter, to make the law. They have not had much of a choice, which leaves them directly in the firing line when it does not go the media’s way.

The decision in the Mosely case was a landmark one, and opened up floodgates for numerous other celebrities, including Sienna Miller and Ashley Cole to cite privacy as their defence against the newspaper who intruded into their privacy lives. Whether celebrities deserve their privacy is another topic for debate.

The whole situation is a mess, leaving editors and reporters not sure of what they can and can’t print or where the line in drawn. The same with those whose privacy is invaded.  Previously the law looked at confidentiality and there was nowhere else to look for guidance on the privacy issue when it started to come up as an issue in the court.

Clarification is needed on the matter, so judges, reporters, editors and any victims can be clear. At the moment, each case is resting on one individual, the judge (which is usually Eady) who then has to take any repercussions of being brave enough to stand against the national press. Parliament needs to legislate, as the longer the issue goes on, the more confusing it will become.

Advertisements

Permalink Leave a Comment

Paid for content-will it work?

November 30, 2009 at 2:17 pm (new age journalism) (, , , , , )

The latest challenge (albeit not a totally new one) that now faces journalism and its role in the digital age is whether to charge readers for online content. For the past few years, both regional and national newspapers have let their content be accessed for free for anyone across the globe to read and comment on.

But this was while the printing side of newspapers was fairly safe. Now they are playing a different game. Sales are down, and continuing to fall in most areas, advertising has taken a hit with the recession and some newspapers have crumpled entirely. So now Johnston Press have gone out on a limb and decided to start charging for their online content. This is not a new idea, it’s one that has been hit around the proverbial journalism tennis court for a while now, with Rupert Murdoch playing team captain.

I can understand the logic, people are increasingly turning to websites to get their news fix, as it’s instantly accessible, updated frequently so the news is breaking and is easier to access (you don’t have to leave your house to pop down the local shop to get your news anymore). And what else? Oh yes, it’s free! And that is one of the key issues that Mr Murdoch and Johnston seem to either be forgetting, neglecting or just undermining. One of the key aspects of being able to consume news via the World Wide Web is that you don’t have to pay a penny for it.

So will it work? It depends on a lot of factors. They have to have a loyal audience. If the titles have a readership who follows them avidly, then they might be willing to pay for their news. The price is also a huge issue. A couple of pence a story might be fine, or perhaps a few pounds a month in a subscription would be passable, but people aren’t likely to fork out much more for it, especially during a recession. And it’s not exactly the high-flying figures that newspapers need if they are going to struggle through these tough times.

But what is probably the most important point is that they need to have a monopoly on their local area and the news they cover. And not many titles do. Which is where the problem comes in. Readers are not going to pay for something they can find elsewhere. The BBC local websites will always be a massive competitor, and they are not likely to start charging. There are also hundreds of other sites who will cover regional and national news for free. I heard from a previous tutor that the Guardian have put a beat blogger into Cardiff, so even national newspapers are starting to push their way into the hyper local scene, which again means another rival for regional newspapers.

It’s not that I don’t want it to work, but I think other ideas are needed. As someone who is a champion for printed news and trained in newspaper journalism, I can’t imagine a world without hard copies of newspapers, but online developments can’t be ignored, and if anything they could be the saviour for newspaper titles. But charging for content is a risk strategy that I’m not sure will pay off in the end.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Social Media Squabbles

April 15, 2009 at 9:55 pm (Cardiff news, new age journalism, Web 2.0) (, , )


There is no denying that social media has been pretty useful for us, not just in terms of keeping in contact with friends and family, and also fulfilling our needs to find out what is going on and what people are doing, but it can also help with useful contacts. Twitter is the latest one that seems to have suddenly risen up from the depths of the unknown into every bit of conversation I hear at the moment, whether it is on the news, radio, TV or even in everyday conversations with friends, they are all talking about “twittering”.It is a good way of tracking people in your chosen profession, especially for journalism, as many high profile journalists are on the networking site.  Unlike facebook, Twitter means you can follow anyone you like and are able to message them without worrying about privacy settings or having to add people as friends.

This has it’s pro’s and con’s. Like I said it has great communication benefits, but it can also lead to stalkerish tendencies. Some may be harmless, but when people start stalking their ex’s and love interest, it is only going to lead to disaster and heartbreak. There have been a couple of cases now where ex partners have assaulted or even killed their partners because of facebook messages or changes in their relationship status. A case a few months ago showed a man whose ex changed her relationship status to single killed her in a jealous rage.

Another concerning part of social networking that may cause problems is for high profile people. They will have to be careful of what they put out on their profiles, and what they say that represents their feelings or opinions as it suddenly gives a large part of the public and insight into their lives and personalities. This is always going to be like walking on broken glass.

Figures in the community also need to take care. The latest case emerged today, where a Cardiff Assembly Member, Jonathon Morgan linked his Twitter post to a website which featured negative images of Cardiff on a weekend night. I don’t think the picture would come as much of a shock to anyone who has been out in Cardiff on a Saturday night, or even on a match day, when it is obvious most of the photos were taken. It is messy to say the least. But instead of being concerned about what to do to tackle the problem, other Assembly Member’s have attacked Mr Morgan, saying he is promoting offensive pictures.

Perhaps they should be considering ways to help clean up Cardiff and deal with the problems rather than vindicating someone who exposes it. Instead of squabbling between each other, perhaps they should consider the problems that Cardiff suffers from on nights such as these and concentrate on cleaning up the city rather than worrying about protecting the city’s image.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Prison Suicide Rates At Alarming Figure

March 24, 2009 at 4:29 pm (Cardiff news) (, , , , , )

A LEADING charity has said suicide rates in prison are already at an alarming figure for 2009, just days after a Cardiff man was found hanging in his prison cell.
The Prison Reform Trust said suicide rates in prisons in England and Wales in 2009, which have already reached 11, are expected to rise and the current figures were “very worrying”.
These statistics come three days after Gareth Thomas, 28, of Gwent, was found hanging in his cell at Cardiff Prison. Thomas was due for release as early as next week after being sentenced to two months, 18 days in prison for theft and non-payment of fines.
A spokesman for South Wales Police said: “South Wales Police was called to a report of a sudden death of a 28-year-old man at Her Majesty’s Prison, Cardiff, on Tuesday, 10 March 2009. An investigation is being carried out on behalf of the coroner.”
Last year David Cushing, 35, from Ystrad Mynach, who was on remand after being accused of murdering his baby son was found hanged in his prison cell at Parc Prison, Bridgend on August 16.
South Wales Police said: “We have been at the forefront of influencing the debate as to how such complex needs of health related drug and alcohol dependencies and mental health needs are met.
“The challenge is to ensure wider community and partnership engagement so one of societies most vulnerable groups can be addressed as a health need within the health system and not one of being detained within police cells.”
A spokesperson for the Prison Reform Charity said: “Prison suicides are a problem and we need to figure out ways to reduce them. More needs to be done, especially for those in the first few days of custody when people arrive in prison and are at their most vulnerable.”
“There is not one factor behind these deaths, but people clearly need to recognise overcrowding in the prisons. The prison system as a whole is overcrowded. Whether the figures will go down for this year is difficult to tell but what we know already is very worrying.”

Permalink Leave a Comment

Campaign to Save Pub Steps Up

March 24, 2009 at 4:14 pm (Cardiff news)

From cardiffpubs.co.uk

From cardiffpubs.co.uk

The campaign to save one of Cardiff’s oldest pubs have stepped up as time is running out before it gets demolished

The Vulcan Hotel, Adam Street, Adamsdown, has been under threat since plans were announced to knock it down to become a car park for St David’s 2.

The pub, which is owner by Cardiff brewery Brains, is situated in the middle of a car park and it has now been decided that it will be demolished to make more room for parking.

The pub, which is 155 years old and become apart of Cardiff’s historical culture, is only five years away form being classed as a listed building, which would prevent any damage being done to it.

The campaign has been ongoing since September after the announcements were made last year to save the Vulcan and make it a listed building to protect it. But the campaigners are having to step up the campaign and gather increased support before time runs out, as the pub is planned to be demolished in June.

T-shirts have been made with slogans saying “Save the Vulcan”. There have been various protests organised and events to raise awareness and gather support.

Support to sae the pub has also come from Assembly Members Jenny Willott and Jenny Randerson.

Facebook groups and blogs have been set up to gather support, the biggest group being -Save the Vulcan with over 700 members.

Rachel Thomas is the campaigns organiser for the Liberal Democrats, Cardiff and has organised the campaign to save the Vulcan.

Miss Thomas said: “Cardiff is becoming like every other city in the UK- same shops, same restaurants and faceless bars, same atmosphere. The Vulcan characterises Cardiff’s character and must be left to thrive.

Miss Thomas said the pub was a reminder of Cardiff’s history from when it used to serve the workers on the docks, and this was an important part of Cardiff’s history.

A protest was held outside the Senedd to present the 5,000 signature petition to the Assembly’s Petitions Committee.

On 12th March a literary night is being held in the Vulcan, with writers including Peter Finch and John Williams, and musician Heather Jones.

On March 16 a concert will be performed at the pub by the Orion IV String Quartet, who will play a selection of music that has existed since 1853.

Dr Bernard Kane, violist in the quartet said: “The Vulcan represents and example of our past here, in Cardiff. Once a building like The Vulcan is destroyed it can never be replaced. That part of this city’s history, along with the memories of our ancestors basically would be torn down with its destruction.

“I am passionate about saving The Vulcan as I have seen far too many buildings of its like destroyed to create pre-fab structures that will not last even a fraction of the Vulcan’s age.”

So far the campaign has received a lot of support from Cardiff residents who do not want to see the Vulcan demolished. The group have sent round a petition with 5,000 signatures was handed to the Welsh Assembly to put pressure on them to stop the plans.

Miss Thomas said: “That is not a number the Welsh Assembly Government can ignore. I am more than confident that the Assembly will do everything it can, I am confident that we can win.

An idea to move the Vulcan to St Fagan’s Museum was strongly rejected by the campaigners.

Miss Thomas said: “Moving the pub to St Fagan’s would be a crime. Why close a thriving business in a recession, spend thousands and thousands of pounds moving it to a museum for it to rot as an empty shell? The pub is a living reminder of our history. It has stood on that plot of land on Adam Street since 1853, and doesn’t deserve to be dumped in a museum.”

Permalink Leave a Comment

Cardiff School rasies money for Rwandan Children

March 24, 2009 at 4:05 pm (Cardiff news) (, , , )

A PRIMARY school in Cardiff has raised money for new classrooms in a primary school in Rwanda through their partnership with the African school. Llanederyn Primary School has been raising funds for Kigali Junior Academy and Kayonza Primary School for the last four years.

Each year the school has managed to raise about £250 to go towards the school. The money was raised from donations at the school’s harvest festival celebrations and has been enough to build and furnish two new classrooms at Kayonza Primary School. They have also received donations from the British Council. Kayonza School is a charity project for Llanederyn but the links with Kigali Junior Academy is an equitable link where both schools benefit.

Madeleine Fox, who teaches at Llanederyn Primary School set up the link through her brother, after she visited her family who live in the Kayonza district of Rwanda. Ms Fox has helped arrange events in the school and has organised her own events outside of her teaching. A concert she organised at the Electricity Social and Welfare Club in Llandaff included performances from a school teacher’s band. The event managed to raise £1,000. Ms Fox has raised more than £2,000 for the Rwandan schools through a number of charity events.

Ms Fox said: “I initially went out to Rwanda to visit my family and we vitied the schools. We have had the link for about four years we have been sending letters back to them. I think the links are good for the children because we do not want them to feel that a link has to be charitable, it can also be equitable. The equitable link with the academy exists because it is not such a poor school and it is very important to move the children out of stereotypes of poor Africans.”

Ms Fox and another teacher, Helena Jones, visited Kayonza Primary School in May 2008 during an exchange visit and were shown around the two new classrooms. The Rwandan school has now renamed itself the Kayonza Llanederyn Primary School in recognition of the link. Some of the students have now got pen pals with the pupils in the African schools and regularly write to them. Members of staff from Kayonza Primary School also came over the teach in Llanederyn, and showed pupils traditional flags, drums, instruments and dances.

Permalink 2 Comments

Children do charity

March 19, 2009 at 11:18 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

With charity and giving being on everyone’s mind at the moment for Comic Relief tonight (Fri), people are putting themselves through all kinds of trials and tribulation to raise money for children both in the United Kingdom and Africa.

This year the slogan is ‘Do something funny for money’, and students, schools and businesses all over Cardiff are performing tasks such as dressing in pyjamas all day to telling jokes to raise funds for the cause.

But what happens when all the fun surrounding Comic Relief stops? It is easy to forget the help that is needed, especially in Africa where children are suffering daily. One Cardiff school broke the trend and decided last year to raise money for an East African orphanage, so they would receive money and help at a time of year when they may not be in the forefront of everyone’s mind.

Albany Primary School, Albany Road, Plasnewydd celebrated their harvest festival in October by raising money for the East African Mission Orphanage in Kenya. Now the money has been put to good us and the orphanage has just managed to buy new bunk beds with the donations that were raised by the pupils. The beds means the children, who are in the orphanage after losing their parents to disease or not being properly cared for, can have a better night’s sleep and be more comfortable in their surroundings.

All classes, from class one to class 14 took part in the Harvest Festival on October 6. They had the choice of either donating food to local homeless centres or donating money to the orphanage. They managed to raise £150 to be sent to Kenya. Jody Sage, 27,teacher of class 9 pupils, helped organise the donation to Mission Orphanage after she travelled through Africa and had visited the orphanage herself.

The school prefers to donate to a cause that is linked to one of their teachers, so Mrs Sage suggested the orphanage would be perfect as the children would be able to relate to it by helping other children.

Mrs Sage said: “We spent 24 hours at the orphanage with the children. They are children at the need of the day and need help. It is a brilliant orphanage but it is only voluntary so they need support.”

The orphanage has been established for more than 10 years, and provides a home for more than 125 children and teenage mothers. They care for children who would end up either dying a premature death through malnutrition, or walking the streets in search of food. They often turn to as a means of survival. The children are often taken into Kenyan gangs and are exploited by the gang leaders. The orphanage tries to find the children and help them before they are forced onto the streets.

Because they are so short of funding, they rely on donations to survive. The orphanage only applies to children who are orphans, not HIV victims, which Mrs Sage say is a problem for the institution, as HIV sufferers often get a lot of coverage and support but places such as the orphanage are overlooked.

The children at Albany Primary School were sent photos of the orphans and the new beds they had brought with the donations from the school. Mrs Sage said the children were very pleased to have seen the photos and how their money had been used to help other children like themselves.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Oxjam

February 22, 2009 at 9:24 pm (Features) (, , , )

In a time of economic turmoil, charities are beginning to suffer as more and more people are losing their jobs and disposable income is scarce, the phrase “charity starts at home” has never rung more true.

 

Shops in Cardiff are struggling as people are donating their clothes less and less, yet more people are buying the clothing they sell. Shelves are already starting to become empty and it will not be long before stock dries up completely.

 

But charities are still in great need of donations, so there has to be a new appeal to convince people to part with their finances.

 

Cardiff University student, Luke Todd, 23, of Linden Avenue, Roath, is tackling this problem by organising the music festival, Oxjam 2009.

 

The idea is new bands will play in Cardiff venues and all the proceeds made will be donated to the Oxfam Charity.

 

The first event is a jazz event, called the Jazz Sessions, which starts on February 28 at Tommy’s Bar, Howard Gardens, Cardiff. This is a new part to the festival and hopes to promote and nurture the talents of young people.

On Saturday 28 February, the festival will feature the Lil Big Band, a 22 piece big band, who plays a mixture of classic swing, funk and Latin numbers.

 

 

The second strand of the festival is being put together by Mr Todd, who aims to set it up for the end of March or April.

 

Mr Todd is the leader of the Cardiff Oxfam Group, and got involved with the cause when Oxjam was first launched in 2006.

 

He said: “I had gone to an Oxfam Live conference at St David’s Hall and found out that Oxjam was to be their latest campaign. I then joined the Cardiff Oxfam Group because I wanted to become more involved.”

 

Mr Todd says he has organised a number of Oxjam gigs each year since the launch and really enjoys being part of the cause.

 

Oxjam festivals take place all over the country, but the events in Cardiff have been one of the biggest successes.

 

So far, the events all over the country have raised £373, 212 and after the festivals in Cardiff the figure should increase by a significant amount.

 

Events can stretch room festivals such as Cardiff’s to a small party, or even busking in the street.

 

Mr Todd says he hopes that the music event will encourage music lovers in the city to go and will encourage people to donate their money to charity as they will get something out of the event.

 

He said: “People often want to give money to charity but they are not sure how, or it is easy for the idea to slip out of people’s minds. If there are events like this, people can not only turn up and have fun, but they can also help a very worthwhile cause.”

 

Mr Todd says he hopes the event will be the biggest one in Cardiff yet.

 

There are other parts to the festival apart for the music, including a raffle with prizes such as £20 vouchers to spend at high street shops, and a signed copy of the Kate Rusby songbook. Awareness is also being raised through a photo caption competition online with a prize of a free meal at Nandos restaurant.

 

The jazz night will also show a 20 minute video, Sisters on the Planet, made by Oxfam to show why the cause needs help and where the donations will go.

 

Mr Todd says he hopes the events that are being organised in March will be able to be held in a bigger venue so they can get wider audience in to make even more money to give to Oxfam.

 

Oxfam’s biggest focus now is those affected by the Gaza conflict and those in Zimbabwe who are suffering from the cholera outbreak.

 

The Gaza appeal is the newest appeal for the charity, and shops are desperately trying to raise the money to help civilians who have been caught up in the conflict.

 

The money raised by the Oxjam festivals will go to help the charity provide services and care for people all over the world and help to fight poverty across the world.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Capturing Cardiff

January 14, 2009 at 3:43 pm (Uncategorized)

link to audio

Google Map

Going to the local theatre has always been part of entertainment in society. Historically, it used to be only for the rich and entertainment in local theatres was for royalty or the aristocracy. Then it became open to the masses and its role in periods of such as the Second World War was integral to keeping the nation’s spirits up in a time of disaster and emotional strain. But what is its role today?

The New Theatre, Cardiff

The New Theatre, Cardiff

Cardiff certainly does not suffer from a lack of theatre offerings to locals in the city. But it doesn’t seem to play the role that it used to for entertainment. Is local theatre in Cardiff dead? There is a strong argument for it, especially when there are so many factors that it now has to compete with.

The Sherman Theatre, Cardiff

The Sherman Theatre, Cardiff

Its influence and place in the city has certainly decreased and it is not getting the figures that it used to. Performing Arts revenue for the economy went from £0.9 billion in 1998 to £0.5 billion in 2001, a trend that seems to be continuous. The Laughing Audience theatre group suggested on average a performance only gets 55% audience capacity, a figure that leaves theatres in debt if they cannot get subsidies for their losses.

That is not to say that theatre will drown in a sea of new entertainment, but those in the profession are in for a struggle to keep themselves going for audiences who still hold the theatre close to their hearts.

We live in a world where cheap entertainment is right at our fingertips and theatre does not seem to fit in anymore. In Cardiff, there are at least 4 venues that put on shows within a 10 minute walk from Queen Street. But then so is the cinema, entertainment shops and gig venues.

Cineworld, Cardiff

Cineworld, Cardiff

You don’t even have to leave the house to be entertained anymore, most of us have a wide collection on DVD’s, so it requires minimal movement and with on demand television we can watch our favourite television shows when we like, leaving almost no need to pay to go to the theatre.

HMV, Cardiff

HMV, Cardiff

It has become increasingly difficult for young people to find the desire or inclination to go. They have grown up in a time when Hollywood’s budget is beyond our comprehension and we can witness the most talented actors with the world’s best special effects for a mere £5 and the theatre looks a bit dull in comparison. With Cardiff focusing on its sporting entertainment and music venues the theatre can easily be overlooked.

Cineworld, Cardiff

Cineworld, Cardiff

David Bond, Head of Acting at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, admits that figures are not what they used to be. But he feels it has come to equilibrium and local theatre will not decline any further.

He said: “There is no decline in popularity here. Our shows often sell out.”

The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

Mr Bond felt there would always be demand for live theatre performances as people get tired of television and film.

He said: “People buy CDs but they still want to go to the concerts. People have said theatre is in decline for many years, but it is still relatively healthy. People will always go to London to see high profile shows but there is still a substantial audience for theatre locally.”

The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

Mr Bond said theatre struggled against new forms of entertainment as it was not a commodity and could not be used again to show on repeat.

He added: “I think it will survive. Theatre will change but it won’t go. It is part of the community as much as swimming pools, libraries or museums.”

Hannah Rix, an amateur dramatics performer, with R.A.T.S, a local theatre company, agrees local theatre in Cardiff is still popular.

She said: “I think local theatre in Cardiff is thriving. As a huge fan of performing and watching local theatre productions I’m spoilt for choice. There are a large number of amateur companies in Cardiff, many of which have made a good name for themselves among local people.”

The Sherman Theatre, Cardiff

The Sherman Theatre, Cardiff

Despite pressure from London West end shows to attract audiences, Miss Rix suggests that these actually have the opposite effect on theatre’s popularity in Cardiff and the big shows in the West end and from popular reality television programmes such as ‘I’d do Anything’ have helped make theatre in Cardiff more successful.

She said: “Professional companies do very well at venues such as the New Theatre and the Wales Millennium Centre, but amateur companies such as Orbit Theatre have a very large following. I think it’s a good thing that theatre lovers have a more affordable opportunity to enjoy performances. Talent searches provide huge publicity for West End theatre productions and I think this has a positive knock on effect for amateurs.”

It seems many people are still attracted to the theatre but the wide choice of other entertainment forms that are cheaper, which is crucial in the time of economic instability, plays a part in falling audience figures.

Local theatre has its place and perhaps it will survive, it would be sad if it did not, but it needs to change and bring out something spectacular to wow audiences back to its doors.

Relevant websites

· http://www.newtheatrecardiff.co.uk/english/index.asp

· http://www.stdavidshallcardiff.co.uk/english/index.asp

· http://www.shermancymru.co.uk/

· http://www.rwcmd.ac.uk/

· http://www.laughingaudience.co.uk/

· http://www.theatre-wales.co.uk/amdram/index.asp

· http://www.everymantheatre.co.uk/

Permalink Leave a Comment

I’ve got love for you if you were born in the 80’s…

December 10, 2008 at 6:32 pm (new age journalism, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )

//montaraventures.com/pix/rubikcube.jpg

Source-http://montaraventures.com/pix/rubikcube.jpg

I think it is fairly evident for all to see that a lot has changed since the 1980’s. I imagine this is something that most of us are pretty grateful for, especially when thinking about the bad clothing and the hairstyles! Even though I only got to enjoy four years of this glorious decade, I do know it was pretty fun, but I think most of it should be left in  the 1980’s, especially luminous clothing and make-up. Some of the music was great-David Bowie, Blondie just to name a few. Other things were not so great-including the journalism.

Rory Cellan-Jones, the BBC Technology Correspondant spoke to us about how journalism has changed since the 1980’s and I think it’s fair to say it has come a long long way. Looking at clips of news from the 1980’s was not only slightly embarassing to watch, but many of us laughed. It seemed ridiculous to us that people would actually wear glasses that took up two thirds of their face, or that journalism was done using cartoons, badly shot footage and hardly any graphics. If graphics were used they were of the most basic kind and did not tell you much about the story itself.

Back in the 1980’s broadcast journalism was basic. But the audience was huge, as the choice was fairly limited. There was no 24 hours which seems strange as it is so infiltrated in our news consumption now.

There was also limited interactivty- callers were treated as mad or strange individuals and of course there was not email or text, unlike today where all we see is user generated content filtered into all aspects of news programming.

In some ways it is easy to think that being a journalist in the 1980’s was harder then than it is now, as we have a lot more tools to do things for us. I personally think it has actually become a harder profession with the proliferation of technology into the industry. Journalists now have to be multi-skilled and be able to use all aspects of the technology, from writing to filming. You can no longer be amazing at just one aspect of the trade.

We also now have to learn to be interactive and deal with the pressure from user generated content. I always think that high quality journalism will triumph in the end, but we are now under more pressure to make sure our work is of a high quality.

The 1980’s may have been a period that people look back on wistfully, thinking about their school discos or trying to hide their shame and embarassment. It is no different for journalism and I’m sure in another 20 years or so we will feel the same about this period. At the moment we just need to keep moving with the times and rise to the challenge that the techonological innovation has brought us.

Permalink 1 Comment

Next page »