Friday, September 30, 2011

No brainers in the news

While rising from my slumber the other morning I was informed by Ms. Ann Doyle (pictured above on the TV News), who was reading the morning news on the radio, that the main item for discussion between Nicholas Sarkozy, the French president, and Mr. Papandreou, the prime minister of Greece, at their meeting in Paris later today, would be the Greek debt crisis.

Well, I said to my wife who, for her sins, is obliged to listen to my musings on these occasions, they’re hardly going to spend the meeting talking about the Ireland – Italy World Cup rugby game, which is due to be played on Sunday (although, to be fair, they might well be interested in whether or not Ronan O’Gara will be in the starting line out for Ireland as, it seems, is every other cognisant human at this stage of our evolution).

My problem is that the above is another example of when we are treated to what my American friends call a no-brainer, as some sort of verbal packaging to contain the real story, which is that a meeting between the two heads of state will take place today in Paris.

The same thing happens when the newsreader says something like: “Gardai have begun an investigation after the body of a man was found with gunshot wounds…”. That’s not news. It would be news if an RTE reporter discovered that the police had decided not to bother with an investigation in such circumstances. Again, the real purpose of the item is to let us know about the murder, so why don’t they just get on with it?

So I have this plea to my many readers in the RTE newsroom – please give a little thought to the way these things are presented. If nothing else, Mrs. Mouse will have less in the way of irascible commentary to put up with as she awakens of a morning.

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