Media Musings Blog Archive Manufacturing the Prime Ministerial wedding
Mercurial enfant mercurial victory vi tf a story getting blown out of proportion is nothing new, it is slightly rarer though to see one entirely made up.
Australian newspapers seem to have taken the methods of long dead media mogul William Randolph Hearst to heart. When told there was no Spanish American war, Hearst told a photographer, furnish the pictures, I furnish the war, basically suggesting he would manufacture the conflict.
The problem? Well, simply, all he said was that at some point in the future he may propose to his partner. Seems like a relatively normal thing to think in a longterm relationship, rather than a quote worthy of a hard news story.
The poor guy even said he was happy with the way the relationship was at the moment.
This manufactured story made the front page of the Sunday Herald Sun.
It spurned other stories, including claims a wedding would help improve the PM declining approval ratings, and even forced the Prime Minister to deny the impending wedding trumped up by the interview.
Is this invented sensationalism what news organisations have to do to sell a paper these days? Or is this hackneyed journalism exactly what is leading people to search for different news sources online?
I personally can stand the way news outlets these days feel the need to sensationalise stories to the point that they are no longer factual.
Since when did the Sunday Herald Sun become New Idea?
If I wanted to read exaggeration and lies I would pick up a weekly trashy magazine.
Newspaper outlets need to put this into perspective before they lose credibility forever.
With dwindling readership numbers you think they tread carefully, but in my opinion by sensationalising stories they are just turning more readers away in search of more truthful and factual reading.
I completely agree. When i first read this story i felt nothing but anger in regards to the media completely fabricating a story.
Interestingly, the story also ran on the front page of The Sunday Age. Why both major newspapers thought it necessary to run this story, let alone on the front page, i have no idea.
Stories about prominent people who are of interest to the public, are always going to attract attention. However, creating a story out of nothing to sell a few newspapers, just shouldn happen.
The danger or running one story like this is that it will start to become commonplace, potentially triggering the tabloidisation of once trusted news sources.
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