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Thread: Whelan, Pravda and P.ie - undermining a mainstream media game.

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    Default Whelan, Pravda and P.ie - undermining a mainstream media game.

    At peak yesterday the main Politics.ie thread on the Taoiseach's Morning Ireland interview and aftermath was clocking ten thousand views per hour.

    As the story spread and anger grew at the latest instance of us being dissed by the man we pay to lead the country, there were revealing reactions from some quarters. Sarah Carey picks up on the reaction of Noel Whelan, a barrister and commentator regularly heard on RTE and columnist in the Irish Times.

    Noel Whelan’s arguments on Today with Pat Kenny on Radio 1 yesterday dug the hole deeper.

    He’d moved on from blaming Coveney and Twitter to blaming RTÉ. Apparently the real crime was not that Coveney would dare to tweet what everyone else was thinking, but that RTÉ would let us know. Whelan was unusually shrill and genuinely furious that Pat Kenny had broadcast the accusation. He argued it was the responsibility of the mainstream media to check its facts rather than channelling unconfirmed rubbish from the interweb.

    When Kenny said they had formally asked the Fianna Fáil press office whether the Taoiseach was “unwell” but received no response, Whelan said they should have waited for one. Hello Pravda.

    [...]
    Whelan’s rage against the establishment media revealed that he sees the media, not as a channel to get information to the public, but as gatekeepers who should keep information from the public. Normally the media are pretty reliable at keeping politicians’ social secrets, since most of the time, they are keeping the politicians company too.

    Inebriation is one of those states which journalists actively collude with politicians in covering up.

    Social media totally undermine the game because they make it harder to control stories that the golden media circle deems unfit for general public consumption.


    Blame lies squarely with the Taoiseach - The Irish Times - Thu, Sep 16, 2010

    Of course as Carey's account of the interview with Whelan by Pat Kenny itself shows, the mainstream media (MSM in the jargon) played its part in covering the story but as Miriam Lord said yesterday this was at least in part because of the way it had taken off here and on other places like twitter. It is not a case of MSM bad, social media good, but the symbiosis can yield novel effects.

    Gotta keep up with the changing times.
    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it." - Upton Sinclair.

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    Politics.ie Member nonpartyboy's Avatar
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    Whelan is nothing more than a trojan horse and how he gets presented as some kind of independent commentator, shows how low the standards in the irish media are.

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    Politics.ie Member Twin Towers's Avatar
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    Save the trees and ink wells, the MSM Spinning Jenny is obsolete, the democratization of media has well begun.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nonpartyboy View Post
    Whelan is nothing more than a trojan horse and how he gets presented as some kind of independent commentator, shows how low the standards in the irish media are.

    Agreed but Sarah Carey isn't a serious journalist either !!

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    Wonder how Sindo, Harris and Corcoran will spin it next Sunday. I suspect something like "Cowen is a great man like Churchill, who suffered depression and was fond of whiskey, but of course then there were no twitters and internet to print those things about him. If it was now Churchill would be outed and Germany would have won ther war, same with Kennedy and women. Our Brian is persecuted, but like Churchill he will lead us out of the depths and to a shining city on the hill, no one else can, so back our Churchill" . Remember where you read it first !

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    Politics.ie Member Libero's Avatar
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    Yes, the opinion piece has some correct insights. And it is fun to see one IT columnist have a go at another.

    Two questions remain...

    Will Whelan continue demanding righteous deference towards the apparatus of government once his crowd are in opposition? Will he f--k.

    And how will the fragrant Sarah react when the Moriarty Tribunal finally publishes and various bloggers take a more, eh, independent view of things than the mainstream media? Will she meekly accept it if RTÉ turn to those writers as sources of opinion and comment, or will she suddenly turn all Noel Whelan on us, albeit with Denis O'Brien in the place of Brian Cowen? I suppose we're going to find out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tomas Mor View Post
    Wonder how Sindo, Harris and Corcoran will spin it next Sunday. I suspect something like "Cowen is a great man like Churchill, who suffered depression and was fond of whiskey, but of course then there were no twitters and internet to print those things about him. If it was now Churchill would be outed and Germany would have won ther war, same with Kennedy and women. Our Brian is persecuted, but like Churchill he will lead us out of the depths and to a shining city on the hill, no one else can, so back our Churchill" . Remember where you read it first !
    It writes itself, really, doesn't it?

    They'll probably throw in a reference to other heroic heavy drinkers of an Irish background.

    "If there'd been twitter and gutter rats like Coveney back in 1990, there'd have been no Paul McGrath on that Irish team. We wouldn't have had half the team, or big Jack. We'll take big Jack over little Enda any day - or any morning - of the week. Rinse. Wash. Sneer. Repeat."

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    Quote Originally Posted by adrem View Post
    Agreed but Sarah Carey isn't a serious journalist either !!
    Hmm, I'm beginning to warm to her. Thought she was very good on the (very good) Prime Time debate with Ivana Bacik the last night and she's hit a few nails on the head here too. Journalist, maybe not, commentator - pretty good. The very fact that she doesn't seem to think in the usual Irish journalistic way is probably her best asset.

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    Quote Originally Posted by adrem View Post
    Agreed but Sarah Carey isn't a serious journalist either !!
    Can't argue with that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Twin Towers View Post
    Save the trees and ink wells, the MSM Spinning Jenny is obsolete, the democratization of media has well begun.
    And that is exactly the problem/issue.

    Just like the printing press and Salons in Paris the internet is as yet fairly much a free for all. The consquences for social change are vast and unpredictable. But control of media outlets like TV and newspapers means little now. It is so easy to get your opinion out there now there really is no way that the genie can go back in the bottle.

    A very complex legal and social web was required to control newpapers social effects. The same will take a long time to sort out on the net. There will always be a space for quality professionals in journalism but I cannot see a future for information control.

    If anyone in the country now wants to make something known there is virtually nothing to stop them making it known. That is a massive change.

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