Right, after bashing university students in my last post, here is a great piece by third-year journalism student Steve Carpenter. It’s a report of a speech given by Bob Satchwell, he of the Society of Editors fame. He sent it to HoldtheFrontPage, who I hope paid him properly for it. http://www.holdthefrontpage.co.uk/news/090227satchwell.shtml
Now I’ve always felt Bob was too quick to defend the tabloids whenever they stepped over the mark rather than giving them the odd kicking that they clearly deserve, but I can respect his views and he usually argues a good case.
But this speech he made to students at Coventry beggars belief.
It may be a case of telling his audience what they wanted to hear – ie that their pointless three year course (sorry Steve) is likely to lead to a job and (according to the PG) that the ‘land of milk and honey’ will return to newspapers soon – but it’s such rose-tinted nonsense that it could have been written by one of the ‘owners’.
Now before you dismiss Bob’s claim as utter tosh, or choke at his statement that the downturn could be good for the press, read this other little gem from him first:
“There are lots of stories about journalists being made redundant, which hides the fact that there are lots of other journalists that have actually been employed. There are more journalists now employed than there were ten years ago.”
Marvellous. Well done Bob. What spectacular awareness of our industry you have.
To be fair, I suppose you could argue that stories about the Kent Messenger group slashing a quarter of its staff, Northcliffe, Johnson Press and others ‘centralising production’, the heavy cuts at Bristol… (I could go on but you get the point)….are taking the limelight away from the seven reporting jobs being advertised on Holdthefrontpage at the moment – a whole two of these are for trainees.
I was actually about to join the society this week – which funnily enough has just been complaining about a fall in subscriptions – but I really don’t think I’ll bother now as it seems to have become the official mouthpiece for the owners rather than editors struggling to get their ‘products’ out because of the lack of staff.
I tell you what Bob, I’ll send in my cheque as soon as this land of milk and honey returns.