Monday, August 30, 2010

Professional hatred (part 2)

Recent events have brought up some another profession I despise...

Tabloid reporters
I respect most reporters who uncover stories of corruption by government officials or tales of deception by big companies. I have great admiration for the journalists who go to dangerous spots in the world like war zones or areas of high crime to highlight the plight of the oppressed and the underrepresented.

There is one branch of journalism that I don't like: the tabloid news. Basically they publish news which will make them the most money, rather than news which should be relevant to the people reading or watching it. They drum up ridiculous stories, such as celebrity gossip. I can't stand celebrity gossip. There is a primetime half hour show on TVB Jade, the local Chinese channel here in Hong Kong, devoted to stories about popstars and soap opera actors. Thankfully the evening news is on the other channel at the same time, sparing me from having to watch that trash.

There is also news that is totally irrelevant and doesn't have an impact on me even in the slightest. Such stories include, "I found a picture of Jesus on my toast!" and "Tortoise found with two heads!" These stories have a definite interest but they should displace the economy or the war in Afghanistan or the plight of flood-stricken Pakistanis from the front pages. These are stories that swarmy git Piers Morgan would put on the front pages of the newspapers during his time as editor of "The Sun" and "The Mirror". If there had been a face of tabloid journalism, his face would be it... and I would never get tired punching it.

There is one aspect of journalism that I don't like. In the recent tragedy of the Hong Kong tourists dying in Manila, I was really pissed off when journalists, with their microphones and cameras surrounding the survivors like a pack of vultures. All they wanted was to get the story but would they consider their feelings? These people have gone through the most horrific trauma of their lives, being shot at and seeing their loved ones die right in front of their eyes. At least give them a day or two before asking them how they feel (which is a bit obvious).

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