It seems that there is something at work that is largely unnoticed. We no longer trust what we read in newspapers, but we tend to trust what we see on the net, weather it be in wikipedia, on a site like Business Spectator that has journalists of real stature, or in some random blog.
Just because somebody said it, does not make it right, but it also seems that if it is said digitally, the default is to trust it, at least a bit.
In Sydney, there are two newspapers, the Telegraph and the Herald, neither are held in much esteem these days, although nobody seems to believe what they read in the “Tele” it is almost a work of daily fiction. Similarly the weekly “womens” (don’t men read them?) magazines are filled with complete fabrications, a few weeks ago one of them had an “exclusive” on the wedding of local actor Kate Ritchie, down to photos of the smiling bride and new husband, interviews, and comment on the honeymoon destination. Absolute fiction, some goose sat in a room and made it all up, photo-shopped composite “photographs” and all, but it was published as an exclusive!
Is this just a bit of fun, or a more serious erosion of our standards and expectations of the profession of journalism, and the publishers that bring it to us. Had it been on line, it may have had more credibility, and I am wondering why?
Anyone can be a publisher these days, all you need is a computer and a free weblog account, when in the past, at least you had to be serious to stump up the capital involved in the printing and distribution networks, and the expenses involved in staff, offices, phones, and the rest. I suspect the “old media” is hastening its own demise by desperately seeking to attract readers for short term circulation numbers to sustain advertising, when they may be better off recognising the world hs changed, and alter their business model accordingly.