Breaking news and the infantalisation of audiences…

When you strip it all back, much of the bad blood generated on Twitter towards the BBC during Sunday’s lightening rebel ‘intrusion’ into Tripoli, was primarily for not giving good entertainment in the time frame required. On Dale and Co David Prever observes:

Waving tablets instead of toys we’ve reverted, without realising, to our inner child. We demand to know what’s going on right now, or sooner. None of this is new. The historian Christopher Lasch made a similar observation, years ago, when he said: “News appeals to the same jaded appetite that makes a child tire of a toy as soon as it becomes familiar..”

Eagerness to entertain may have been at the back of Iain’s faux pas that same night… David again:

Breaking news, even of the most tragic kind, feeds a dark need within us all. But in the race to be first, students of journalism – whatever that means these days – would do well to remember the classic Mark Twin quotation: ” A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.”

Or to perhaps put it another way, just because you’re first, doesn’t always mean you’re the finest.

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty