Is Northern Ireland’s government funded tail wagging the media dog?

Newton Emerson from last Thursday’s Hearts and Minds argues that complaints from the First Minister ring a little hollow, not least because very little in the media originates in the media but in the vast bank of Press officers in Stormont, and a closed loop between government funded civil society and Stormont MLAs:

As the resulting tide of hysterical press releases floods out an increasingly hard pressed media simply repeats them. Peter Robinson should know how that balance of power has shifted his Executive employs employs 161 press officers more than all the newspaper journalists in Belfast.

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