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Archive for the ‘media’


The meaning of power 519

Posted on May 09, 2019 by

At midnight all the agents 461

Posted on May 06, 2019 by

On Saturday, for the second year in a row, there was a huge and joyous independence march through the centre of Glasgow, which passed off with no incidents, arrests or disturbances despite attempted provocation from a small handful of abusive Unionist bigots led by a Holocaust denier.

Most of the Sunday papers carried largely neutral and factual reports of the event, of varying quality and size, with only a comical piece of hysteria in the extremist Scottish Daily Express standing out as objectionable for its ridiculous headline (and even then the actual copy barely mentioned the march at all).

But also for the second year in a row, one paper – or to be more specific, one man – took a rather more negative slant.

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The soft block 296

Posted on April 28, 2019 by

The BBC came in for a spot of criticism this week when its new BBC Scotland channel opted to show some snooker instead of Nicola Sturgeon’s major speech about a new independence referendum. But then things started to get weird.

An alert Wings reader noted that they hadn’t been able to locate any coverage by the state broadcaster of the SNP’s annual conference this weekend either, even though they send live cameras to just about any other party’s gatherings even if they amount to three people in a phone box (hi, Scottish Lib Dems).

The plot swiftly thickened.

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Context phobia 418

Posted on April 22, 2019 by

Alert readers will know by now that there’s nothing the Scottish media – and the Scottish Daily Mail in particular – likes more than printing scary-sounding figures with no context whatsoever by which people could judge how big or small they really are.

Nothing’s changed today (other than a rather sneaky inset shot of an old story about a different statistic which misleadingly makes today’s one look like a big increase), so rather than bang on we’ll just fill in the blanks: ScotRail runs around 760,000 trains a year, so this year’s cancellation figures amount to about 3.5% of all trains.

Which is to say, around one time in every 30 that you go to get a train it’ll have been cancelled and you’ll have to wait for the next one, which on the average commuter line will probably mean 15-20 minutes.

Which is still a pain in the hole, of course, but if it’s such a high number ask yourself why the Mail is so pathologically averse to simply telling you what percentage it is.

We’ll see you again with these figures in a few weeks, folks.

Walking into traps 180

Posted on April 21, 2019 by

(This article was originally intended to go up on Wednesday, but it was somewhat overtaken by events before it was finished.)

This week has seen another of those strange coincidences by which a whole slew of Unionist pundits all randomly decide to start talking about the same subject. On this occasion it was the rape clause, and why it proved the SNP are bad.

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A tissue of fair comments 256

Posted on April 19, 2019 by

Most of the on-the-spot media reporting of the judgement in our court case against Kezia Dugdale on Wednesday was pretty fair and straightforward news coverage. The majority of pieces accurately and prominently mentioned the fact that the sheriff had found that I wasn’t a homophobe and that Dugdale’s article in the Daily Record which had claimed that I was WAS both untrue and defamatory.

(Some readers objected to headlines claiming that Dugdale had been “victorious”, but the strict legal fact is that she had.)

But it didn’t take long for the press to recover its composure and revert to type.

A comment piece in today’s Herald is probably the peak so far.

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Any minute now they’ll get it 234

Posted on April 08, 2019 by

Just you wait and see.

Scottish political pundits: they’ve got all the pieces in their hands, but they still haven’t even worked out that it’s a jigsaw.

The problem with being liberal 262

Posted on April 07, 2019 by

We haven’t talked much on Wings about the court case currently in progress against former Scottish Labour branch manager Kezia Dugdale, for hopefully obvious reasons.

The case is currently “in avizandum” – legal jargon for “the sheriff is considering his decision” – and a result is hoped for around the end of this month, and while as far as we know there’s no actual rule against talking about it at this stage, if you’re one of the participants it’s probably not the greatest idea as a general principle.

But what CAN be discussed is a much wider issue which it touched on, as highlighted by Daily Record columnist Anna Burnside while talking about the case during last week’s BBC Radio Scotland media review on the John Beattie Show.

The debate had a fully balanced panel: Burnside, who thought I was an awful person, Stuart Cosgrove, who thought I was an awful person with a sometimes-good website, and Anne Marie Watson, who thought I was an awful person. But it was Burnside who really went in with the boot, as can be heard from 2m 27s on the clip below.

(The John Beattie Show, BBC Radio Scotland, 28 March 2019)
.

Let’s take a walk through that.

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To James Kelly MSP, our congratulations 572

Posted on April 02, 2019 by

So there was a football match at the weekend.

At least three people were stabbed, one very seriously, in violent incidents the likes of which haven’t been seen around Scottish football for years.

But it was probably just a random, unforseeable one-off, right?

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Our pale red faces 203

Posted on March 22, 2019 by

From today’s Telegraph:

But who’s this “we”, exactly?

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When Fact Checks Fail 381

Posted on March 21, 2019 by

Wings Over Scotland isn’t the only website dedicated to scrutinising the truthfulness of things claimed by politicians and media pundits. There’s the widely-respected and diligent FullFact.org, there’s Scotland’s own The Ferret, and there’s the BBC’s Reality Check (which frequently takes the more unconventional approach of, er, not making a finding either way about what the reality of things is).

And then there’s Channel 4’s FactCheck, which we’re going to generously assume had a liquid lunch yesterday and was a little under the weather.

Because not only is the conclusion that it reached on the subject of an independent Scotland having to use the Euro utter nonsense that’s been debunked roughly 1000 times in the last six years, it doesn’t even agree with itself.

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A trick we’ve seen before 431

Posted on March 13, 2019 by

The Scotsman is delighted to have some bad news to report:

So, the number of teachers is falling, right?

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