Wednesday, July 30, 2008

[non news] sky beats it into shape

We were watching Sky News last night and this Anna Jones was trying to beat up the Los Angeles quake yesterday.

Well, it's not as if it is the first time its happened - I mean they were sort of forewarned, weren't they?

She had a local radio station type online and was asking if people were terrified or injured or whatever and he kept replying with words like "mild", "normal" and so on. She tried a few more descriptive words like "major quake" and "loss of life" but it was clear the local wasn't buying so she brought out her trump:

"Is this the one before the Big One Los Angleles has been expecting?"
... or words to that effect. We were smiling at her attempts to beat it up, all the while nice scenic shots of the city and environs were being shown. Suddenly the camera zoomed in on a puddle at a crossroads - could this have been due to the quake?

Giving up on that, Sky cut to Belgrade and waited for the 50 or so hooligans to attack the riot police. Again the reporter wasn't buying the sensationalist line. He spoke of expecting it and that it was far fewer people than the last time, mostly well behaved.

Poor old Sky went to commercial then came back with the 7.5 seconds when the police actually were using truncheons on hooligans who'd thrown bricks and a line like "violent clashes on the streets of Belgrade".

Reminds me of Python's Ralph Mellish sketch:

Scarcely able to believe his eyes, Ralph Mellish looked down. But one glance confirmed his suspicions. Behind a bush, on the side of the road, there was no severed arm, no dismembered trunk of a man in his late fifties, no head in a bag – nothing - not a sausage.

For Ralph Mellish, this was not to be the start of any trail of events which would not, in no time at all, involve him in neither a tangled knot of suspicion, nor any web of lies, which would, had he been involved, surely have led him to no other place, than the central criminal court of the Old Bailey.


TBRRob said...

Well James -- It's not as if they're there to report the truth.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Yes, it was quite funny, really.

Colin Campbell said...

Any deaths yet James.

It is a real problem for these guys. They have hours and hours to fill and a viewership with apparent attention span of about 37 seconds.

I used to watch CNN in the early days of the mid 80s when it was an odd cable channel. They were at least not so sensationalist.

It is such a big business now.

jmb said...

The very reason I don't watch the news on TV. They haver to fill that hour with something, no news, lets make something into news.
Radio news on the other hand, top of the hour, just the bald facts then on to regular programming.
For more in depth coverage try the newspaper.

CherryPie said...

That has reminded me of one of the reasons I don't watch the news ;-)

Dragonstar said...

As Colin says, the time must be filled. And there must be pictures to go with the time-filler. If there's no news, make it, otherwise there'll be no well-paid jobs!

mutleythedog said...

Vorsicht!! Dem Presse ist Zensiert!!

jams o donnell said...

24 News channels are to be avoided like the plage. I'm glad that Sky News is off Cable here (I miss Battlestar Galactica on Sky One though)

Lord James Bigglesworth said...

Well we all seem to have had similar experiences this way, except for Battlestar Galactica.

Morning Angel said...

This made me giggle. :)