Flat Earth News

COMPULSORY reading

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Tagged: / Posted: 19 November 2008

Flat Earth News should be made COMPULSORY reading for anyone studying Media or Journalism; but above all for the BBC Reporters. On their Strip on BBC World Service today they had the News that a UN report found evidence of Nuclear activity in the site bombed by Israel in Syria. That was less than 24 hours after Mr Al Baradei issued a report that the Nuclear activity found there does not prove anything and could be from the bombs used. I am not a Syrian. But being an Arab I will find it very difficult to believe any reported News by the BBC World Service. Is there any hope that common decency and honesty can find its way back to a profession that in our culture is called the Fourth Authority or Cornerstone of Power??

compulsory reading - and the BBC World Service

Added: 6 July 2009

I agree that Nick's brilliant book should be compulsory reading for all journalists. As someone who works for BBC World Service news it has made me very aware of the failings of the beeb, but also, I believe, better at my job. I'm replying to your comment because - although I don't know anything about this particular story - on the face of it, i.e. purely on the basis of your account, I don't understand what the problem was. Maybe you could clarify? If the UN brought out a report saying that it - the UN - had found evidence of nuclear activity at the site, should we not report that? I would be surprised and appalled if the BBC represented the contents of a report, by anyone, as the unqualified truth. If that's the impression you got then something clearly went very wrong. Please don't give up on the WS - we need critical and observant listeners!

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