And now for the news

Published November 22, 2005

Overheard today:

“Is it just me or are you completely bored about the whole George Best in hospital saga?”

“I haven’t really heard that much about it, I don’t watch the news.”

“I mean, honestly, he’s back in hospital, he’s on a life support machine, he’s in a coma. Aren’t there any real newsworthy stories to report on?”

And that’s the thing. There aren’t. Not when you have to fill up an entire 24 hours of news. It’s easier for the hourly news programmes on the regular channels, because they can just pick the best of what their longer cousins on the 24 hour news channels have reported. But to have to think up news to fill every second of the day must be incredibly hard. It’s no wonder that things like George Best’s ailing condition, and Elaine Lorden collapsing in the jungle, get hours and hours of speculation and guest interviews with very little facts.

If they made their news channels a lot simpler, it would help. If you’ve ever actually sat down and watched a 24 hour news channel for more than five minutes, you will have inevitably come away with a raging headache. Sky Sports is the worst. You’ve got the time in one corner that flips over to reveal the channel you’re watching. You’ve got not one but two ticker bars at the bottom of the screen, revealing results of completely different sports. You’ve got a sidebar with league tables and high score boards. And finally, you’ve got the main picture, with a presenter talking and plenty of video footage to watch. How can anyone possibly take in all of that information?

If they tried to throw less information at us at once, they could spread it over the course of the day much easier, and the people I overheard talking would have nothing to complain about.

← Previous How my music tastes have changed
Next → What mothers do