Is News Working? UnHerd Launches With Analysis of 24/7 Media

Today sees the launch of UnHerd – a new venture edited by Tim Montgomerie. UnHerd will break the mould of traditional news services by refusing to chase the daily news cycle. The site will use the talents of its journalists to delve into and understand the key issues of our time...

The site will kick off, appropriately, with an examination of the news industry and the power it has in western culture. The launch will see the release of an original documentary ‘News in Crisis’ featuring Alastair Campbell, Sir Craig Oliver, Justin Webb and Jonathan Dimbleby. One key theme is the question of whether the BBC is overly influenced by newspapers…

Both Webb and Dimbleby concede there is an issue, with Dimbleby saying:

“The BBC looks over its shoulder at what is being written in the newspapers or online…..Partly because you don’t want to be behind the game but partly also, though I don’t think they’re correct in the way in which they put it, it is that journalists generally collude. Whether you’re a broadcaster or a writing journalist, if you’re in the lobby, if you’re in the bubble of Westminster you’re sharing information, ‘’What did he say? What did she say? What’s the story here do you think?’”

Another theme of the documentary is the tortured question of BBC impartiality, with Sir Craig concluding that:

“One of the biggest problems with the BBC was really highlighted during Brexit: that they mistook balance for impartiality. And they got to a situation where they felt, look here are two campaigns that they’re both officially recognized, today one is saying this, the other is saying that — we simply report that. I felt very strongly during that not just from the point that the Leave campaign is getting away with murder, there was also criticisms of the Remain campaign too. But the BBC should have been better than that. They should have used the expertise that they had to say — this is simply not true.”

UnHerd will also publish a YouGov survey that underlines the need for a new approach, and lays bare the extent of public scepticism. The survey finds that 54% of people think that news providers “don’t understand people like me”. 77% believe news providers are politically biased…

UnHerd has recruited a stellar collection of regular writers and big name guests from around the world. Contributors also come from all sides of the political spectrum – from Douglas Murray on the right to Ayesha Hazarika and James Bloodworth on the left; Brexit supporters like Douglas Carswell and Brexit opponents like Ian Birrell and Chris Deerin. Crucially, the cutting edge original content they provide will be free to access…

Content produced and sponsored by UnHerd




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Quote of the Day

No prizes for guessing who Andrea Leadsom is talking about:

“As you said last week, Mr Speaker, we have a responsibility to safeguard the rights of this House and as Leader of the House I seek to do exactly that, treating all members of parliament with courtesy and respect. I hope and expect all Honourable and Right Honourable members to do likewise.”

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