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People want newspapers to focus on news and not on character assassination

Mark Fletcher
August 22nd, 2014 · 8 Comments

isthisnewsI am sure plenty of customers in NSW will complain about the front cover of The Daily Telegraph today and question whether it’s news to trash Jodhi Meares as this story does.

People want news.  They want stories that matter, stories about their state and town about life as it affects them. People do not want trash for the sake of trash.

Newsagents will get people returning to buy a newspaper that focuses on news.

Yes, Jodhi Meares has been found guilty of drink driving – in a court and she has been sentenced. And, yes, the story is of public interest. However, it is not a front page story and certainly not a story as published this morning. Dreadful.

Publishers ought to focus on news that really matters, stories that rely on the ethics and integrity journalists claim is core to their profession.


Category: Newspapers

8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Gregg // Aug 22, 2014 at 7:50 AM

    Spot on Mark. We have had a lot of comments on why this is on the cover as it not really news. This sort of story seems to be increasing with the Telegraph, they don’t no the difference between NEWS and CRAP.


  • 2 Jenny // Aug 22, 2014 at 10:13 AM

    Just so wrong. Put yourself in her shoes and think how you would feel. And we wonder why people take their own lives!


  • 3 Brett // Aug 22, 2014 at 10:33 AM

    News has suffered with the decline in revenue. Teams of reporters working on getting the story and getting it in detail are no longer possible. News today consists of two things, either an opinion piece or a rehash of a press release.

    The truly scary thing is that accurate and sustained investigative journalism is a keystone of a democracy. The lack of a determined and unbiased fourth estate permits our Govt(s) to get away with stuff none of us want and/or allows our Govt(s) to manipulate the mass media to produce outcomes we don’t want.

    I think the Hawke Govt was perhaps the last to have a professional fourth estate in occupation. Since that time, journalism in the real sense has withered.


  • 4 James // Aug 22, 2014 at 4:37 PM

    What a conundrum the news business is in and this instance presents the perfect example.

    Meaningful broadsheet newspapers now print nearly half what they did as little as four years ago – people just dont read long form news anymore (on mass in a commercially viable fashion anyway).

    Young folk get their news from free aggregated one paragraph news providers where over half the content is pop culture rubbish (yahoo, msn etc). And don’t get me started on so called “social media” where it strikes me that between vindictive trolls and agenda pushing spin meisters, its hard to know whats real and whats not – yet people live on the thing 24 hours a day.

    And yet as a bikini model she covets media attention and the front page.

    One could only imagine if it were George Pell that had driven with a blood alcohol content of .18.

    I dont profess to have the answers and I agree its not news, but neither is half the stuff on the public broadcaster and in other publishers offerings. Its a conundrum within a riddle within a puzzle – expect more of it not less.


  • 5 Joe // Aug 23, 2014 at 10:34 AM

    Hi Mark,

    Long time reader first time commenter and I have a question: How do you know people don’t like this? You state “People want newspapers to focus on news and not on character assassination” however you don’t explain how you are so sure of this?

    Not denying this is a terrible story and I personally wouldn’t be overly interested but how do you know ALL people feel this way?


  • 6 Mark Fletcher // Aug 23, 2014 at 1:06 PM

    Joe I’ve had people comment across the counter about newspaper headlines that are propaganda more than news. In my post I don’t claim all would complain. I say: I am sure plenty of customers in NSW will complain…


  • 7 Joe // Aug 23, 2014 at 1:26 PM

    Understandable but I do doubt that was everyone who purchased the paper.

    I was referring to you clickbait title ‘People want newspapers to focus on news and not on character assassination’.


  • 8 Mark Fletcher // Aug 23, 2014 at 1:53 PM

    Joe I doubt everyone purchasing the paper commented as well.

    No clickbait in the title.


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