24 – News time!
We all interact with the news from time to time, it’s unavoidable in a world of media saturation. Yes the main source of our current affairs knowledge stems from a still well-regulated stream of information, where the sensationalists make us worry about obscure issues, the main international headlines depress us into changing channels, and the ‘intellectual’ news very deliberately condemns the working class, the students and any other pressing minority that can kick up a fuss in some way.
Tom Hanks as Forrest Gump once said “You can tell a lot about a person by looking at their shoes” I think you can tell even more about them if you find out what news channel they watch, and what paper they read. There’s a multitude of variety out there, but they all act as agents of socialisation – keeping us up to date with the ways of our world. Call it propaganda, call it a fear campaign, call it staying in the loop. It all feeds us information, but the question is how do you like yours? Do you like it over exaggerated and troublesome, or maybe a little bit corrupt and bordering false? Then you might like a slice of the Murdoch empire. Maybe you like to feel a part of a higher society by bullying the youth of the Country, the poor and the foreign with statistics? Then you might like the Daily Mail. It’s up to you it’s all subjective; maybe I’m prejudiced, but aren’t we all?
My favourite News Channel is RT news, or simply ‘Russia Today’. Because I love to know what is going on in the wider world without being bombarded with the same information day in and day out. RT news has a coalition of reporters all across the world, and the headquarters is based in Moscow – so they show a little slice of Russian culture during the intermissions, which I find it fascinating. RT news focusses on European news but provides an extensive report of world news, more so than the BBC in my opinion. I think that is why I love it.
With their live internet streams and twitter style updates on their website I witnessed the crucial points of the uprising in Egypt, the student riots in London a few months ago, as well as the turning points in the Libya crisis and the Tsunami in Japan. I took the raw unfiltered information straight from their news feeds for myself, without censorship or reduction. I found out about Libya and Egypt’s recent revolutions weeks before the BBC had even mentioned it, and I was being informed of the aftermath long after the popular news channels had moved on to other stories. I’m thankful for that. It’s a very different ‘B list’ News channel to the likes of Al-Jazeera or CNN (in Britain CNN is a lesser known channel), the information is more focussed, and it is more or less without an ideologically charged agenda. Some say it is Anti-American, but to me it is just showing us another way to look at things; they don’t point fingers, they raise questions. RT reports pressing news and leaves us to make our minds up, and I can say I am shocked by the results.
The channel also hosts interviews with key figures in pressing matters, with interest of political exploration RT’s ‘question time’ styled side-show helps to validate information and answer key questions regarding terrorism, nuclear energy and economic issues. Once again leaving us to make our minds up for ourselves.
Rival news channels and publishers call it ‘post-soviet propaganda’ but surely isn’t all news propaganda for its respective country of origin? To me it is a source of information that I have chosen to take in, sometimes validation is a case of subjectivity, and a case of what we may or may not want to hear.