This is tabloid country

If the BBC sets the agenda for the media, then the right-wing tabloids play the role of court provocateurs. The written word is traditionally more partial than television news in the UK. So the tabloids are still defined by the BBC, as they rail against it. This is the irony behind the talk of a ‘left-wing’ bias. Even still, Britain’s tabloids have become notorious for their news coverage. The two biggest players, The Sun and the Daily Mail, are worthy of classic case studies. The Daily Mail is well known for its sensationalist headlines, and its ultra-conservative agenda. By contrast, … Continue reading

Folk Devils of the Far-Right

Last year, when the Rotherham child abuse scandal broke the narrative was ready-made. The perpetrators were Asian men, the victims were white girls: it’s multiculturalism, stupid! The proponents of diversity and tolerance were painted as rape apologists. It was a particularly powerful case. An estimated 1,400 underage girls had been abused by these men. The emotional pitch is strong and piercing. The forces of reaction often set out to monopolise the most emotionally-satisfying answers. So a lot of people actually blamed ‘political-correctness’. As if the social services feared accusations of racism so much that they covered up a systematic pattern … Continue reading