March 19, 2008

Gutter crap

Filed under: Media, Politics/News — Tags: , , — 4fooey @ 10:18 pm

The so-called “tabloids” (a term no longer apt since most newspapers are tabloid in size) or “gutter press” have taken a beating today, and rightly so. Today in the UK two newspapers, the Daily Express and the Daily Star had to print grovelling apologies to Kate and Gerry McCann for the utter nonsense they have been writing about them and the entire Madeleine case since she went missing last May, 2007. Every day they print complete rubbish and twist the truth, but with the Madeleine case they have stepped well over the mark – every day the tabloids print gossip, untruths, twisted viewpoints, and other meaningless twaddle, and every day hundreds of millions of people buy and read this nonsense.

I buy these papers now and again, just to assure myself that they are total crap. And it makes me very angry. To think we spend billions trying to educate people and yet millions read this rubbish and have their opinons shaped by it – why do newspaper editors (whom one assumes are reasonably intelligent or literate people) allow such nonsense to be written and published in their papers. Every day of the week they print defamatory, slanderous, and libellous comments about anybody they wish to pick on – the McCann’s are just the latest victims, Heather Mills (McCartney) is probably another whom they depict as mad and grasping (whereas they depict Paul McCartney as a near saint, which is equally probably not the truth).

The apologies printed on the covers of the Daily Express and the Daily Star (both owned Express newspapers, btw) are reproduced on the internet; here’s the one in the Express: KATE AND GERRY MCCANN: SORRY. Just as damaging for the Express were the comments they had to read out in court: “Express Newspapers regrets publishing these extremely serious, yet baseless, allegations concerning Mr and Mrs McCann over a sustained period of what will already have been an enormously distressing time for them.” Imagine how the McCann’s have felt.

The papers were forced to pay over £500,000 to the Find Madeleine fund – seems like they got off very lightly. If I were the McCann’s I would now sue the papers for libel  – the papers have more-or-less admitted their guilt – they would get millions.

I haven’t got much real sympathy for the McCann’s, since they have always sought the limelight and have become ‘media stars’ in their own right, but they do not deserve what they have been accused of. It’s great that the tabloids have been taught a lesson today, but I doubt they’ll mend their truly evil ways.


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