14.2 C
London
Friday, June 5, 2020

Save The Free Press

As #SaveTheSunNewspaper trends on Twitter, an analysis of the sorry state of the British press should act as a wake-up call to our nation suggests Matthew Steeples

Yesterday, ‘Save The Sun Newspaper’ was all over Twitter. Those clicking the hashtag were not taken to a page bemoaning the fact that the Rupert Murdoch owned paper has lost £68 million in the last year alone, but to a Go Fund Me campaign that has raised over £16,500 that will be donated to the Essex Coronavirus Action Urgent Food Bank Appeal.

 

Set up by an Essex based food bank campaigner named Simon Harris, #SaveTheSunNewspaper garnered support because of the intense dislike for a newspaper that some claim is “not fit to wipe their arse with” whilst others (especially the people of Liverpool, a city where it is mostly banned due to their crass reporting of the 1989 Hillsborough disaster) condemn it for its “lies” and “bigoted” reporting.

 

Whilst the ‘fake’ hashtag was about helping foodbanks, on Sunday night, the Guardian’s Roy Greenslade highlighted a genuine problem for the British press. In an article titled: “Why our newspapers might not survive the contagion of coronavirus,” the media commentator observed: “It is the bleakest of ironies: the biggest news story in a lifetime is killing off the very industry that exists to report it. Coronavirus is destroying newsprint newspapers across Britain, delivering the coup de grace to businesses that were already in the process of dying.”

 

Whilst it has been for long known that traditional media has struggled to cope and find a way to exist and maintain revenue streams in a period where online and social media have battered it, coronavirus, it appears, will be the death knell for many a print newspaper.

 

Just like, for example, the restaurant sector, which will likely see many establishments fail to reopen once this pandemic is over due to them not having the resources to get their staff back and pay their rent and suppliers, many print newspapers – most especially local titles – will not weather the storm. As Greenslade points out, “it seems inconceivable that publishers, already struggling to fund journalism, will return to the previous status quo.” Going further, he remarks: “That’s because the status quo was, itself, one of perpetual fragility in which publishers were engaged in the delicate task of managing newsprint decline while, in parallel, seeking to create a digital journalism business model.”

 

Here comes an epoch of change and with newsrooms across Britain currently completely empty, publishers will indeed start to rationalise when so-called “normality” returns (in whatever form that takes). Expensive city centre offices will be shut and like cancer, profitless titles will most likely be permanently closed down. This will not be a loss that should be glorified and it will not be something that should celebrated; without good journalism, we’ll all be the poorer. Those thinking we can rely on the Twitterati for news are in for an era of the emperor’s new clothes and they’re in for a future where fake news will quite wrongly reign.

 

Facebook: @TheSteepleTimes

Instagram: @TheSteepleTimes

Twitter: @SteepleTimes and @M_Steeples

 

15 COMMENTS

  1. The media has been in decline for so long. We lost real investigative journalism long ago – the likes of Dominck Dunne and Bill Deedes were real newshounds. Now we have the Mail Online newsroom kids producing drivel about Kim Kardashian instead. They can’t even spell and the populous eat up the lies of the Mail Online and Sun as gospel. We have gotten what we deserve. We don’t pay for real news anymore, we therefore will suffer the fate we deserve – CRAP.

  2. I don’t read The Sun but I admit to reading The Mail. I know a lot of it is untrue but I keep going back for me. I’m afraid I’m as bad as anyone else. I wish somebody with the resources would fund a newspaper that tells REAL news in the way The Telegraph used to years ago (I cancelled my subscription three years ago as it was going the way of The Sun).

  3. Ethel is right – we need a new news source that is honest and has integrity. But who will pay for it? And will the public buy it? The Internet is a blessing and a curse in giving us free information – free information that is filled with a lot of lies. We’ll all end up like David Icke if we’re not careful.

  4. In my experience the newspapers are not helping themselves in the lockdown. I subscribe to Sunday Times vouchers but it has taken them almost a month to substitute digital access. I subscribed to the i offer at 99p but the login does not work and their advice was repeating how to log in. I bought the launch issue at 20p but have had to cancel my direct debit and have lost a month’s subscription and reading. If these papers cannot reward loyalty now they cannot expect it in the future.

    • A very good point Geoff. I found myself in a similar position with The Telegraph. I was given a subscription last year and once that that was up, renewing it was most difficult. After five phone calls (four of which didn’t even get to ‘humanoids’), I gave up. Their ‘premium’ model is more annoying than most – some articles free, some not. The Times on the other hand, with its entire paywall means I just don’t bother at all. I do miss the crossword but being locked-down in the country for now, I cannot get it as a print version at all.

  5. I would not miss The Sun if it went but Murdoch will not allow that. I would miss The Mirror – surprisingly very good in terms of investigating compared to others

  6. Is that a “drinks all round” offer from you Matthew? Unlikely to be possible since many pubs won’t reopen either. Ethel and me probably need a large print version of the crosswords and I don’t think that is going to happen.

    • I do miss The Times crossword. I used to do it daily at a bar in Chelsea. It seems so long ago.

      As for drinks, we’ll have plenty on the go once this is all over.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular

Moron of the Moment – Dan Wootton

Dominic Cummings mouthpiece Dan Wootton yet again shows himself to be a bit of a berk in attacking both ‘Tatler’ and Sir Keir Starmer in one hit in his column in ‘The Sun.’

The Murky McCann Milieu

Former lead investigator in Madeleine McCann case predicted latest development involving German paedophile in April 2019; Goncalo Amaral suggested the man would be made a “scapegoat” by Scotland Yard.

Handbagged by Meghan

Handbag created by Louis Vuitton to “celebrate” the marriage of Meghan Markle to Prince Harry to be auctioned for a crazy sum.

Wally of the Week – Stephanie Pratt

Shoplifter Stephanie Pratt fulfils her prattish surname in urging urges cops to shoot shoplifters.

Beautiful Bolehyde

Wiltshire manor house once owned by the Duchess of Cornwall and considered as a home by the Duchess of Cambridge’s parents again for sale. Bolehyde Manor is offered for £3.75 million.

Wigan Wanderer Whacked Out

Woman from Wigan named Deborah Barlow wins latest round in the long-running case of ‘walk in a park ruined by exposed tree root’ at the Court of Appeal.

Nasty NestSeekers

Entitled Hamptons brat Jonathan Davis exposed for allegedly squatting in Sag Harbor during the coronavirus lockdown; it turns out he’s a realtor with NestSeekers.

Justice for James Scurlock

Power of social media proven after senseless killing of James Scurlock in Omaha, Nebraska allegedly by a controversial bar owner named Jake Gardner who has been photographed with Donald Trump.

Arcuri Attacks App

Boris Johnson’s alleged ex-mistress Jennifer Arcuri has slammed the NHS coronavirus tracking app and suggested: “There is no way I would download that!” Separately, it’s claimed she’s going on ‘Hunted’ on Channel 4.

A Really Useful Angelis

Matthew Steeples remembers the Liverpudlian actor and voice of ‘Thomas & Friends’ Michael Angelis (18th January 1952 – 30th May 2020).

Are We Nearly Redundant Yet?

Travel writer Sarah Tucker shares news of her latest novella – it’s timely and its titled ‘The Redundant Travel Journalist’

Beer is Very Good For You

Dutch scientist Professor Eric Claassen confirms a beer a day “would be very good for you” and suggests drinking such protects against insomnia, dementia and obesity.

An Eaton Mess

80 Eaton Square apartment for sale for £22.5 million in spite of needing complete renovation; it is listed at a price 25% cheaper than it was five years earlier through Chestertons.

Desmond Dropped

Ex-Daily Express owner Richard Desmond’s plans for a 1,500 apartment complex kicked out as Tory housing minister Robert Jenrick MP is shown to have “unlawfully approved” the proposed scheme.

Moron of the Moment – Darren Grimes

In threatening respected writer Peter Jukes with legal action, Darren Grimes yet again shows himself as nothing but a petulant pillock.

Mixed Up McGee

Dippy Debbie McGee yet again confirms her status as the ultimate airhead in boasting about her connections to ‘Randy Andy’ and is met with a denial from a royal source.

Weather Now

London
light rain
14.2 ° C
15 °
13.3 °
47 %
8.7kmh
64 %
Fri
16 °
Sat
14 °
Sun
19 °
Mon
17 °
Tue
18 °