An Englishman’s Take On Fake News

by Neil Bamforth

The phrase ‘fake news’ almost certainly predates Donald Trump, but, I have to admit, I don’t recall hearing it prior to Trump appearing on the scene. It’s certainly a phrase he likes, but what does it actually mean? Does it mean that loads of news channels are lying to us? Does it mean that Orwell’s 1984 happened and we didn’t actually notice?

No. Ridiculous. The BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Sky, CNN and all the rest of what is termed ‘mainstream media,’ all lying to us? Absurd. And it is.

Now, I suppose countries like Russia, North Korea and China have their own ‘mainstream media’ and, without a shadow of a doubt, their main news channels will lie to them. That’s what happens when you live under a dictatorial regime, be it communist or fascist or what ever it is.

Over in the west though, it doesn’t happen.

There are those who genuinely believe it does though. Trump for one, although I’m not entirely certain he genuinely does believe it. I suspect he just dismisses anything he doesn’t like, particularly about himself, as ‘fake news’.

What of those who do believe it though? I’m tempted to suggest they are probably cut from the same cloth as ‘flat Earthers’ and ‘the Martians are among us’ types.

‘Elvis isn’t dead, he’s working in the pizza take away down the road’. ‘They didn’t really land on the moon, it’s all fake.’ ‘We’re only in huge economic debt because ET reversed the charges’.

You know the type. What are they again? Oh, yes, that’s it, lunatics.

So why does there seem to be an alarming increase in believers that our mainstream media are dishing out only what our establishments want us to know?

I expect it has a lot to do with the internet. Social media like Facebook and what have you. Those – what are they called?, platforms? – are a veritable breeding ground for people insisting all kinds of garbage is ‘the Gospel truth’.

It has to be said though, that, sometimes, it is hard not to wonder. Not about our mainstream media lying to us. They don’t, well, never knowingly anyway and, I expect their researchers rarely get it wrong. It’s just that, sometimes, they do seem to focus on one side of any particular story.

The thing is, all you ‘flat Earthers’ and other lunatics, it isn’t ‘fake news’, it’s the way humans are.

The BBC has been taken to task for showing ‘pro-Remain’ bias at times during Britain’s Brexit fiasco. This wasn’t much of a surprise really as it isn’t a perfect world and the BBC does tend to lean a more ‘liberal’ way.

It does, however, make genuine and earnest attempts to not be biased. That is not fake, that is a fact.

This is actually a good thing. Could you imagine our state broadcaster being all ‘Trumpy’? We’d never get any news other than a picture of Bambi on our screens with an announcement that everything in our world was sweetness and light.

The decision of what to show, or who to have spouting on, during news broadcasts, is taken by the program Editor(s). Said editor(s) are human, and, being so, no matter how hard they try, there will be odd occasions when they get it wrong, in terms of balance.

They aren’t lying to us you ‘Martians are among us’ mad people, they are, occasionally, getting the balance wrong.

Examples are everywhere of this imbalance of views but, the Editors only have so long to fit everything in, so, if they don’t manage to fit everything in, somebody somewhere will say “They were biased against the Brexit leave side’ or ‘they were biased against the Brexit remain side’.

Take Trump – please, somebody, take him somewhere else. Anywhere! Mars perhaps? Then the Martians could say ‘Trump’s among us’ – and they’d be right!

Now, on his visit to Blighty, a lot of people protested. Not as many as the last time, but quite a lot. It has to be said that quite a lot came along to give him a cheer. Not as many as were protesting though.

Frankly, it was difficult to tell which side were the more demented.

Most of the protesters seemed to be either throwback hippies or slightly unhinged women with multi colored hair, while most of the supporters seemed to have recently stepped out of the pages of either Mein Kampf or a Jeeves and Wooster novel.

The mainstream media tended to focus on the protesters rather than the cheering crowd of about ten.

Oh, all right, there were more than ten. That’s fake news. Twelve then, all right.

Anyway, all over social media there were videos claiming the mainstream news had favored the protesters. Trump agreed, via a tweet, that he had seen no protesters and had been met with thousands of cheering people.

I briefly wondered whether he had accidentally gone to Liverpool, where hundreds of thousands had cheered the Liverpool team after winning The Champions League. Perhaps he had mistakenly gone there and thought the Liverpudlians loved him.

Look. I do have some concerns that some of our mainstream media is, of late, allowing a bit too much bias one way or another, but, they are not lying to us.

Besides, it is virtually impossible for them to please all of the viewers all of the time.

I don’t know about you, but I’d rather have the BBC showing the mad protesters and leaving it at that, than then go onto showing the equally mad supporters.

Biased or not, there is only so much madness that our mainstream media should show or, frankly, I doubt we could cope.

Nothing fake to see here, so go and sail off the end of your flat Earth you lunatics.

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Posted by on June 6, 2019. Filed under COMMENTARY/OPINION. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry
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3 Responses to An Englishman’s Take On Fake News

  1. Gregory B Gonzalez Reply

    June 6, 2019 at 5:27 pm

    News is only ‘fake’ to Trump when the media isn’t kissing his fat ass. But considering lies have topped ten thousand, I’ll believe CNN any day of the fucking week.

  2. Neil Bamforth Reply

    June 7, 2019 at 9:32 am

    Gregory B : Agreed. What does ‘the lies have topped ten thousand’ mean? A bit slow on the uptake here 😁

  3. cherries Reply

    June 13, 2019 at 12:35 pm

    ‘BBC has been taken to task for showing ‘pro-Remain’ bias at times during Britain’s Brexit fiasco. This wasn’t much of a surprise really as it isn’t a perfect world and the BBC does tend to lean a more ‘liberal’ way.’

    Truth is the BBC has been accused of being Pro Brexit for some time something to do with the top brass being of that leaning. Sorry I don’t remember the names at the moment.

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