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Poor Quality Journalism RE: Transit Projects

  • 23-03-2019 8:06pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 910 ✭✭✭ XPS_Zero


    I just saw this: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/environment/three-more-dublin-bus-routes-to-be-privatised-from-sunday-1.3836667


    ...and it's starting to get on my nerves. Their constant cribbing, p1ssing, moaning and whinging about transport projects.
    Casting everything in a negative tone, everything's bad, nothings good, ever.


    I notice the Guardian etc doing the same with the HS2 project. Now I am not familiar with the details of that project I will admit, the way I am with Irish projects, but I could see from checking it out after that the author had gotten several key aspects flat wrong, stuff she could have verified by looking at the projects wikipedia entry ffsake.


    The themes are always the same:


    1. Transport Minister/Civil Engineer/Transport Planner etc says it's a vast strategic improvement - but Mary who is the one blind passenger out of 250,000 says it will hurt all the blind passengers, so we'd best scrap the project instead of looking for ways to integrate disabled passengers needs into the plan



    2. We interview Tom who says it does not go through his estate anymore it's evil


    3. It's a white elephant...it's always a white elephant


    4. NIMBY'ism....we interviewed Brock who works in Hedge Funds and lives in a house you can see from orbit..."oh no I have to loose 1/3 of my ENORMOUS f---g garden and I'll be handsomely compensated at market rates...I don't want a metro because I have a sports car...f--k all the people who can't afford sports cars and don't live within spitting distance of work, they're the little people...even though some of them will be my kids as they work their way up in the world"


    They always highlight the opinion of the most unqualified, NIMBY'ish professional whingers...the very same people who would ridicule RBB and Paul Murphy one day are quoting them the next when they say x estate being removed from the route is unthinkable.




    What I find bizarre about this is in politics early on someone told me journos in Ireland are lazy, second only in how lazy and cozy with power as those in the US, and if you send our a press release they will literally change the header and publish it as a story with minor alterations, this has sadly proved true with very few exceptions, which is why panderers sadly even in my own party (Troy, and my favorite pandering Dun laoghaire councilor)...but for some reason with Transport projects they are massive rabble rousers in the most irrational way.


    Now, ever since the Luas, they have gone on describing competition within strict state controls, where the state still owns the infrastructure and sets the fares as "privatization"...do they not know the meaning of this term? Look at the bus routes outside London post Thatcher or the rail system in the UK if you wanna see what it really means (where even the infrastructure, for a while, was in private hands). You can oppose this as a model, of course, but if the stuffs not being sold off it's not being privatized, at worst it's a hyrbid model or public-private partnership...but they keep doing this.


    You can oppose a policy model but you don't get to have your own definition of words.



    Some even describe the Luas as "private" despite it being owned by the state. Private companies provide a huge number of day to day services to the public sector, but if that role includes management it's "privatized?" even if their managers bosses are appointed and elected public reps and everything is still owned by the state?
    My complaint is about the press not ordinary people doing this, but that's just it, journos should be more aware of what they are talking about than political actors with an axe to grind who have an interest in recasting things so they look a certain way opposing it.



    I suppose it's a case of bad news sells more papers, having a big spread about the merits of a plan and making the case why something is an improvement, mixed by a kind of whinger 'see the cloud in the silver lining mentality' in Irish culture. It's way more likley to generate clicks and sales if you say it's the end of the world.


    This has to stop, politicos need to stop pandering relentlessly to uninformed busy bodies and point out that if something is better overall for the population but means you have to walk 5 more minutes that's still good...there are other people in the world besides you!...our slow motion planning process needs to change, those of us who were teenagers when Metro was announced are going to be picking up our pensions by the time the first metro car runs at this rate, and that's literal, all this whinging and moaning and throwing a spanner in the works of planning, and politicos pandering to it, sacrificing a project that will help people in 20 years for the sake of their next election 2-5 years away it has to stop...and the media needs to stop encouraging it.


«1

Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,216 ✭✭✭ sharper


    Aside from the usual problems with modern journalism prioritising outrage and clickbait over informative reporting it's hard to get past the problem of the average Irish Times writer not having much use for public transport.

    Conor Pope is writing for the Irish Times, at times about public transport and even Bus Connects but also campaigning against it on twitter

    https://twitter.com/conor_pope/status/1109541286074290176


    Tony O'Brien formerly environment correspondent with the Irish Independent

    https://twitter.com/wexfordobrien/status/1109871827675959298


  • Registered Users Posts: 965 ✭✭✭ Rulmeq




  • Closed Accounts Posts: 26 ✭✭✭ London Correspondent


    I can forgive uninformed twaddle online but when it seeps into journalism I really get mad. Sadly the Irish Media as a whole tend to amplify NIMBY concerns about public transport and amplify the opinions of so-called "experts" if they come out with a load of anti public transport bollox.

    When the DART was being built, the Indo and RTE presented it as an expensive white elephant. After the DART opened - to great success - no one criticized it.

    When the LUAS was being built we never heard the last of all the poor Smithfield residents suffering because of the works and Noelle Campbell Sharpe whining about the disruption on Harcourt Street. After the LUAS opened - to great success - no one criticized the numbers using it.

    I happen to think that several major mistakes have been made by the NTA regarding the Metrolink not least the refusal to consider a Heavy Rail route to the airport in addition to Metrolink and not routing the southern portion of Metrolink via Harolds Cross, Terenure and Knocklyon, however as usual in the Irish media the points made by the OP are spot on.

    Sadly its the voices of the cranks that always get heard loudest in Ireland especially when it comes to Public Transport. I can't think of any country that would tolerate the utter bollox being presented as alternatives to proper public transport. That's why we cant have the proverbial nice things...


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,042 ✭✭✭ crushproof


    Rulmeq wrote: »

    Did you watch that video??? My blood is boiling after seeing it. Each house they were outside had two cars in the driveway and then the old chap is complaining about a 6 lane motorway. Such nonsense!
    "Oh and it will be so difficult coming out of the driveway and having to cross a cycle lane because you know cyclists don't normally observe the rules of the road" What? You are coming onto the carriageway, it's up to you to see if its safe to enter the road.

    Jesus christ I am sick and tired of the rubbish spouted by these idiots. It's infuriating because these are the folk that are rich enough to hire lawyers and fight their case while the rest of us plebs suffer so that they can keep their 5 car driveways and on road parking. :mad::mad::mad:


  • Registered Users Posts: 656 ✭✭✭ johnp001


    This guy has a theory about media bias related to public transport.
    Here's How 82 – RTÉ and the AA


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  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    That's a bit more of a conpiracy theory than anything else. AA offer the same contra deal to any broadcaster and most have taken it. The worst media coverage of PT far and away comes from the newspapers

    That podcast has a dodgy history of amplifying lunatics from time to time also.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 43,404 Mod ✭✭✭✭ magicbastarder


    the irish times make a lot of money (well, they try to) from property features of houses in leafy suburbs, the sort of reader who might be horrified about their sylvan paradise being ruined by accessible public transport.

    it's a pity, their most visible commentator, FO'T, seems to be an inveterate bus user (he wrote an article a few years back, which kinda hinged on him not being able to drive).


  • Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 9,278 Mod ✭✭✭✭ CatInABox


    johnp001 wrote: »
    This guy has a theory about media bias related to public transport.
    Here's How 82 – RTÉ and the AA

    In fariness to the AA, they've been pretty big supporters of both Metrolink and BusConnects. Even they know that there's no room for more cars in the city centre, they've said so themselves.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,919 ✭✭✭✭ AndrewJRenko


    L1011 wrote: »
    That's a bit more of a conpiracy theory than anything else. AA offer the same contra deal to any broadcaster and most have taken it.

    That's not how public services are supposed to work - open tendering, published criteria, fair competition and more


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    That's not how public services are supposed to work - open tendering, published criteria, fair competition and more

    No advertising on any public broadcaster is sold like that


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  • Registered Users Posts: 21,919 ✭✭✭✭ AndrewJRenko


    L1011 wrote: »
    No advertising on any public broadcaster is sold like that

    It's not advertising. It is programme content.


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    It's not advertising. It is programme content.

    It is provided as advertising, though. That's how it works.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 43,404 Mod ✭✭✭✭ magicbastarder


    do they pay for it?


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    do they pay for it?

    RTE take a service they want, receive an invoice for it; the AA buy advertising and the two knock each other out.

    It's how radio stations across the globe get branded vehicles, have their name applied to gigs etc. It's not some special little Irish corruption 'discovered' by a looper on a podcast

    The UK has a provider called GTN who do the same thing, except you give them blank ad time during the update which they sell themselves.

    In the past, local stations here used to get news services in return for the adbreak between news and sports (the most valuable of the day)


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 43,404 Mod ✭✭✭✭ magicbastarder


    it's quite an interesting topic, but that podcast is frustrating. replaying the phone conversation in full is deathly dull, it basically just allows him to repeat his points which he's already gone through anyway; and makes him come across as a bit of a crank.
    you would expect someone who calls themselves a journalist to understand the concept of good editing.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,693 ✭✭✭ blackwhite


    johnp001 wrote: »
    This guy has a theory about media bias related to public transport.
    Here's How 82 – RTÉ and the AA

    I'm not sure how much credibility I'd ascribe to someone who calls Knocklyon and Carrickmines the "posh areas of South Dublin"


    Or someone who is indirectly advocating looking at smartphones whilst driving.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,919 ✭✭✭✭ AndrewJRenko


    L1011 wrote: »
    RTE take a service they want, receive an invoice for it; the AA buy advertising and the two knock each other out.

    It's how radio stations across the globe get branded vehicles, have their name applied to gigs etc.

    RTE is a public body in Ireland. Here's how public bodies across Ireland take services - they publish a tender outlining the services they need. Anyone who meets the qualifying criteria can bid, and they get service they need for the best value.

    Programme commissioning is slightly different but the same principles apply - open to all qualified parties.

    No sweet deals with their college buddies sealed over a few lines of coke.


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    RTE is a public body in Ireland. Here's how public bodies across Ireland take services - they publish a tender outlining the services they need. Anyone who meets the qualifying criteria can bid, and they get service they need for the best value.

    Programme commissioning is slightly different but the same principles apply - open to all qualified parties.

    No sweet deals with their college buddies sealed over a few lines of coke.

    And what other qualified parties are there exactly?

    You do not appear to have any knowledge of the sector, from what you've posted at least.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,961 ✭✭✭ LionelNashe


    XPS_Zero wrote: »
    I just saw this: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/environment/three-more-dublin-bus-routes-to-be-privatised-from-sunday-1.3836667


    ...and it's starting to get on my nerves. Their constant cribbing, p1ssing, moaning and whinging about transport projects.
    Casting everything in a negative tone, everything's bad, nothings good, ever.
    .....

    I don't see anything negative in the article you linked - It's just a few straight-forward paragraphs about 3 routes being privatised - Did they change it since you posted it?


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,919 ✭✭✭✭ AndrewJRenko


    L1011 wrote: »
    And what other qualified parties are there exactly?

    You do not appear to have any knowledge of the sector, from what you've posted at least.

    I've extensive knowledge of the public sector thanks.

    It's not rocket surgery - what's the requirements? Gathering info from Gardai and Council Twitter feeds and encouraging drivers to text in tips while they're driving.


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  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    I've extensive knowledge of the public sector thanks.

    It's not rocket surgery - what's the requirements? Gathering info from Gardai and Council Twitter feeds and encouraging drivers to text in tips while they're driving.

    You don't seem to understand how advertising contra deals work, though.

    So who else precisely is doing that then?


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,919 ✭✭✭✭ AndrewJRenko


    L1011 wrote: »
    You don't seem to understand how advertising contra deals work, though.

    So who else precisely is doing that then?

    A desire to do certain deals does not override public sector procurement regulations.

    The procurement question isn't "who precisely is doing that". The question is "who precisely COULD do that".


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    A desire to do certain deals does not override public sector procurement regulations.

    The procurement question isn't "who precisely is doing that". The question is "who precisely COULD do that".

    If it's against public sector procurement rules do you not think it would have become apparent a long time before a conspiracy theory fermenting podcast noticed it?

    You're dodging the question of who else there is to do it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,440 ✭✭✭ cdaly_


    I don't see anything negative in the article you linked - It's just a few straight-forward paragraphs about 3 routes being privatised - Did they change it since you posted it?

    They have not been privatised. The routes are being operated under contract to a state body by a private contractor.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,919 ✭✭✭✭ AndrewJRenko


    L1011 wrote: »
    If it's against public sector procurement rules do you not think it would have become apparent a long time before a conspiracy theory fermenting podcast noticed it?
    Possibly not, if most people just go 'Ah sure that's how we do things around here "
    L1011 wrote: »

    You're dodging the question of who else there is to do it

    Until you set out the requirements in a tender, no one can really answer that question. Maybe the independent radio news folks could do it. Maybe the Journal or Joe.ie could do it. Maybe whoever does it in Belfast or Manchester could add Dublin to their portfolio. What makes you think that it's so complicated?


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    INN (the news people you are refering to) went bust a decade ago.

    You would not be able to do it without getting basically every station in the country due to the costs involved of studios and staff. It is a natural monopoly.

    INN went bust due to competition and now it's back to a single, different operator - not INN and not the company that thought it could do it cheaper (UTV) either - it's another natural monopoly in a market this small.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,953 ✭✭✭✭ Kermit.de.frog


    At least Pat Kenny brought up the issue this morning of anti social behaviour on public transport. It is rife in this city. It understandably puts a lot of people off public transport who don't want the agro.

    Hopefully we are on our way to seeing a dedicated Transport Police.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,919 ✭✭✭✭ AndrewJRenko


    L1011 wrote: »
    INN (the news people you are refering to) went bust a decade ago.

    You would not be able to do it without getting basically every station in the country due to the costs involved of studios and staff. It is a natural monopoly.

    INN went bust due to competition and now it's back to a single, different operator - not INN and not the company that thought it could do it cheaper (UTV) either - it's another natural monopoly in a market this small.


    There were lots of natural monopolies that disappeared when a competitor or two came along. I was referring to independent radio news in the generic sense, not any particular company. Somebody has people sitting in a studio, collating news and broadcasting each day. It's not a huge reach to cover traffic news too.


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,709 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    There were lots of natural monopolies that disappeared when a competitor or two came along. I was referring to independent radio news in the generic sense, not any particular company. Somebody has people sitting in a studio, collating news and broadcasting each day. It's not a huge reach to cover traffic news too.

    You don't have any idea of the industry. Particularly how small it is.

    A second operator would kill both sharpish. The costs are nowhere near as low as you seem to think they are and there is not the market to support two sets of people doing it. You need multiple live readers and can't reuse existing ones either for multiple reasons - them actually being on air at the time being the main one. You would have to build a content distribution network or increase capacity on your existing one if you already have one for some reason. You'd have to significant undercut the incumbent to get anyone to consider the risk of switching, leaving you with a tiny income stream indefinitely.

    Newstalk are the only network news operator - and they use AA Roadwatch!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 21,919 ✭✭✭✭ AndrewJRenko


    L1011 wrote: »
    You don't have any idea of the industry. Particularly how small it is.

    A second operator would kill both sharpish. The costs are nowhere near as low as you seem to think they are and there is not the market to support two sets of people doing it. You need multiple live readers and can't reuse existing ones either for multiple reasons - them actually being on air at the time being the main one. You would have to build a content distribution network or increase capacity on your existing one if you already have one for some reason. You'd have to significant undercut the incumbent to get anyone to consider the risk of switching, leaving you with a tiny income stream indefinitely.

    Newstalk are the only network news operator - and they use AA Roadwatch!

    Who says it has to be a live reader? Who says it has to be a reader at all? Would the listener get the same value from a text based service read out by the announcer or dj?

    That’s what happens when you start writing down requirements instead of just doing the same thing we did last year.


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