Media

NewsTime, David Bullard and the middle finger

I see a competition for a cover design idea is on for the forthcoming Out to Lunch: Ungagged book by David Bullard. The one I have thought of is a hand showing the middle finger, and the middle finger is in the shape of a spade. This sums up the essence of the manner of…

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Julius Malema, Ferial Haffajee, Eric Miyeni and the economic web

It is ignorance of how the media operates that will make people act surprised at the sacking of allegedly controversial Sowetan columnist, Eric Miyeni. He published an article where he attempted to put the relationship between politics and the media into context. Specifically, he tried to link the City Press’ vigorous efforts to taint the…

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The horror of chav brands

I was mortified. Utterly mortified. I’d gone along to the excruciatingly charming wedding venue in Oxfordshire – not far from where Rebekah Brooks and David Cameron live – to see how my brother was doing with preparations for the reception the following day, and the moment he spots my shoes, he bursts out laughing. They…

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Mourning the death of a legendary white African journalist

It was with deep regret that some of us learnt of the passing on of legendary African journalist Patrick Laurence. Obituaries were carried in the Mail & Guardian and Sunday Times recently. For over 50 years, Laurence was a passionate and committed political writer whose life and work made a clear distinction between radical African…

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Why I like movies about losers

I like movies about losers. Not depressing movies about social issues, you understand – not movies that make you want to slit your wrists because my God the world is a miserable place with precious little opportunity for redemption. No, I mean wry, funny movies about lovable losers whose failures point to the fundamental unfairness…

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Lessons from the News of the World scandal

It would be the ultimate irony if the phone-hacking scandal in the United Kingdom that led to the sinking of the News of the World dragged press freedom down with it. The signs are not encouraging. It has been forecast that the scandal will probably see the demise of the UK press self-regulatory body, the…

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Walmart and South Africa’s misplaced inadequacy

I think South Africa has a small touch of an inferiority complex. An amazing country, with so much potential, but you just don’t always know it.  At least I’m assuming this to be the reason why business leaders, government and excited shoppers have rolled over and prepared for a “corrective” rape from one of the…

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For the Sunday Times, transparency should be the new credibility

It was only after Business Day published, that the Sunday Times proffered an editorial comment – feebly asking the public to feel free to complain about any perceived problems.

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Editors pursue profits, not truth

Editorial leadership and management in the print media have, largely, become corporatised. It is not a new development. Most editors, senior journalists and commentators put on suits, white or colourful shirts and ties when they go to work. Much as there is absolutely nothing wrong with their dress sense or style, it signifies and confirms…

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Polishing turds won’t save our papers

Circulation of English language broadsheets in South Africa is largely in decline. We all know that. But the response hasn’t been to invest in better content. Instead, staff numbers have been slashed, news from elsewhere gets regurgitated and a fixation with other media — websites, multimedia and, of course, Twitter — has developed. Most of…

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