Flat Earth News – Nick Davies

Flat Earth News

Flat Earth News

This is a relentless, detailed, investigation into why and how the ‘mass production of ignorance’ has been created in/by traditional media over the past thirty years.  The main findings:

1. Corporations have taken over the newspaper and broadcasting industry. They have cut staff, increased their output, restricted the flow of news arriving in the newsroom by destroying local frontline reporting.

2. Journalists rely on a tiny number of wire agencies for national and international news. Those agencies have themselves followed the corporate ethic and dismantling of fact checking journalism.

3. News is created and disseminated in an echo-chamber. Everyone monitors and mirrors the output of everyone else – consensus news wins out – fact checking is relegated to a luxury activitiy.

4. The PR machine is overtaking journalism as the source of ‘news’. PR acts for commercial and political groups; its interest lies principally in the manipulation/manufacture of news serving these groups.

What we are looking at here is a global collapse of information-gathering and truth-telling. And that leaves us in a kind of knowledge chaos, where the very subject matter of global debate is shifted from the essential to the arbitrary; where government policy, cultural values, widespread assumptions, declarations of war and attempts at peace all turn out to be poisoned by distortion; where ignorance is accepted as knowledge and falsehood is accepted as truth. (154)