Sandy speaks on matters of life and mirth.
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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Thank Goodness I'm Never Miked

So this story really bugged me.

Basically, Gordon Brown spoke to a woman briefly on camera, and then got into a car, and got frustrated about his inability to answer the woman's questions succinctly. He made a few remarks, including calling her a 'bigoted woman'. Unbeknownst to him, his microphone was still on, and the Sky news crew decided to broadcast it, and play it to the woman in question.

I'm not going to talk about my views on the Prime Minister, but I promise you that who I'm going to vote for has nothing to do with my opinion on this incident, which put briefly, is this: this was a low-down dirty trick by Sky News that was all about sensationalism and nothing about journalism. The clip should never have been broadcast.

Gordon Brown was having a private conversation about a woman he had met for all of thirty seconds, with close advisors. I work at a High School, and I have said plenty of things about the kids that I work with which, if played to their parents, would cause me to have to do a heap of explaining. Do I always mean them? No. Usually, they're said in the heat of the moment, and there is a reason the conversation is private. Sky News invaded Gordon Brown's privacy, and they should be apologising profusely themselves.

How does playing this clip serve the country's best interests? How does it do anything but cause scandal and gossip about an incident that frankly, doesn't matter. I'm sure David Cameron and Nick Clegg have said things just as bad in private, and I think they should have a right to.

To put it simply, I'm pissed off that this is the level that our newscasters have lowered themselves to. Shame on you, Sky News.


Sesquepadalia said...

Firstly - I agree with you; everyone has the right to their own private opinions, even if they are a public figure, and certain elements of the media just don't seem to have a moral compass these days...

Secondly - and I never thought I'd say this - I actually agree with Gordon's assesment of the woman. From what she said, she did come accross as a close minded bigot. Had I been in G.B's shoes, I'd have owned up, explained why the view that there are too many eastern Europeans coming over here and stealing our jobs is a racist, and yes, bigoted one, and perhaps won a slice of the liberal vote, instead of losing a slice of everyone's vote, but there y'go...

Thirdly - and I may have my feminist sensors tuned up too high on this - but is it my imagination or was his dismissal of the woman more centered on the word "woman" than "Bigoted"? And is anyone else remembering the "window dressing" walk out from a while back?

Nik Myers said...

I agree it was over-eager reporting, but surely it was also a bit idiotic of Brown? Given George W.'s "major league asshole" comment and Prince Charles' "horrible man" insult he should surely have learned by now to remember to take the mic off before starting the private conversation?

Ses, I didn't think his dismissal focussed on woman, just that when saying things like that the last word becomes naturally the most stressed. Could be wrong though, it's happened before. Once.

Anonymous said...

Also, not convinced on the woman being bigoted - we should be careful about dismissing anyone who's concerned about immigration as 'bigoted' - it's lazy and disingenuous. I haven't seen a fuller transcript than the one I linked to, but she came over as someone who was questioning large-scale immigration, rather than someone like Nick Griffin. I'd argue against her views, but to calculatedly call her a bigot in a public forum (rather than dismissively in a private one) would be over the top.