The play’s the thingWherein I’ll catch the conscience of the king.Hamlet, Act 2, Scene 2
I’ve been waiting for something to emerge from MediaLens on the Oborne resignation. They tend take a rather puritanical view of what’s ailing the corporate media, nevertheless, this passage in particular is well worth sharing I think…
The deeper problem, ignored by Jenkins, is that this corporate structure not only trims individual stories, it excludes entire frameworks of understanding.
If writing something disagreeable about HSBC or animal rights is problematic, imagine editors consistently presenting corporate domination as a threat to human survival in an age of climate change.
Indeed, because such a position is unimaginable in corporate media 70 per cent dependent on corporate advertising, Oborne and Jenkins are unable to perceive that it is effectively being spiked. They cannot notice the absence of ideational frameworks they are unable to conceive!
But these are spiked, not on the editor’s desk, not even at conception, but by the uniform assumptions of journalists employed by a system that of course selects for corporate conformity: ‘You say what you like, because they like what you say.’ [emphasis added]
For me this is an argument about form, not just the particulars of who owns what or whom. In which case, do we have a media form which is any longer capable of ‘capturing the conscience of a king’? Myself and RG Gregory will discuss next Wednesday.
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