On the media & democracy.

posted in: Editorials | 0

Scottish twitter users will be aware (though there’s a good chance most of Scotland isn’t) of a wee hullabaloo the now about media criticism.

A (non-web, so no link) piece by Neil McKay in the Sunday Herald this week took umbrage at the “fringe” of the YES movement constantly deriding and criticizing the media, especially the Herald group, which it would be fair to say is somewhat supportive of independence – more than any other media titles in Scotland still in print. More so the National, less so the daily Herald.

 

He has a point.

Some of that fringe has been very challenging of all media, especially the more supportive titles. Almost paranoid (tho it’s worth repeating the old adage that it’s not paranoia if they ARE out to get you!)  They don’t tend to go off on one against the Mail, what’s the point? They’re not going to change. But I suppose they feel criticizing or challenging the likes of McKay may result in change etc.

However sometimes the way they do so goes beyond fair critique and into abuse, even outright bullying. That’s not right. No one deserves death threats or abuse. And it’s also self defeating. All it does is decrease support for independence in those we need to culture in the media, and make the YES movement look like a bunch of mouth-frothing angry types. And the unionist media say we’re that and worse already.

 

However.

 

The media should be challenged. Not in the way some choose at the moment, but it needs to be challenged. Just as the yes movement needs challenged on our plans and ideas. On currency or our Europe position.

So the media needs challenged. Challenged on editorial stance, challenged on possible bias, or the perception of such. Challenged to do more investigation, like the Scotland in Union situation which has seen more light from Wings over Scotland than our entire print and broadcast media combined.

 

But that challenging must not sink to abuse. We need to be smarter than that as a movement. We need to look at how our friends in Catalonia campaign. Not trading blows with supportarive journalists on twitter, but out in their communities, day in and day out. Working to build the case for independence with those who arenae sure and those dead against. Canvassing, door knocking, changing hearts and minds.

Unacceptable journalism must be challenged and exposed, like a certain Editor outing someone publicly on twitter. Daft bias like that ridiculous photo of union flags next to saltires, looking for all the world like an equal number of each (instead of 60,000 Indy supporters and 25 sad old men in search of their special-brew) should be exposed and questioned

But so should abusive twitter trolls. Whatever flag they wave.

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