The blogosphere has a rich seam of “media related” blogs, many of which engage in serious critical analysis of the vagaries of the mainstream media. Last year we did a post to introduce our readers to a selection of these. More recently we covered more media and “fact check” blogs (and see also this follow up post). These blogs and sites raise the kind of issues which the Leveson Inquiry is considering and their often careful and well researched analysis of the press is a valuable resource.
The purpose of this post is to provide information about some of the active UK blogs and websites that deal with press accuracy and fairness. We will look at more general “blogs about the media” and non-UK bloggers in future posts. We will also deal with “media tweets”. This is a subjective selection of the blogs we are aware of. We apologise in advance for anyone that we have left out. Please let us know and we will include you in an updated version.
Our first stop is again the Tabloid Watch blog – now nearly three years old and still going strong. It tells us that it is “blogging about bad journalism” – which it does in a consistently entertaining fashion. Along similar lines is the Angry Mob blog - “we read the papers every day” – the title of which, it explains is about “the Angry Mob buying tabloid newspapers to give them an excuse to vent hatred towards other people. provides sharp analysis of the English national press“.
The Five Chinese Crackers blog covers the press generally, with sections on the Mail, the Express, the Sun and “Political Correctness Gone Mad”. It also runs a “Tabloid Bullshit of the Month” award – fiercely competitive and won in September 2011 by “the entire Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday for the hilariously transparently exaggerated claim that the BBC has BANNED the use of BC and AD, in favour of the HEATHEN BCE and CE”.
The Enemies of Reason blog – describes itself as “Pound shop pot shots at the media moral maze”. Its author, Steve Baxter, also has a blog “patrolling the murkier waters of the mainstream media” at the “New Statesman”. The Media Blog covers “the good, the bad & the ugly (via the weird & wonderful) of the media world”.
There are a number of relatively new additions to general “blogging on bad journalism”:
- the “Press Not Sorry” blog – challenging bad journalism which creates fear and hatred;
- Minority Thought” – this started in July 2010 as a blog about bad journalism but now features posts on a variety of subjects from a variety of contributors;
- “No Sleep ‘Til Brooklands” – which describes itself as “Depressing adventures in the damp caves of professionally published nonesense”;
- The ‘only that in you‘ blog – which deals with tabloid responsibility issues.
There are also several blogs dealing with individual newspapers. The “Sun – Tabloid Lies” is devoted, in its own words to “Analysing and Exposing the many deceptions of the Sun newspaper”. The “Daily Mail” has a large following on the blogs. There is “Mail Watch” – which posts about once a month but is worth looking out for.
Several blogs are devoted to the checking of facts. Full Fact.org is a blog and website which works “with politicians, journalists, experts and the public to stop inaccurate claims being made and spread”. Its director, Will Moy, spoke at the Leveson seminar on press regulation.
The Straight Statistics blog and website is run by a pressure group whose aim is to detect and expose the distortion and misuse of statistical information, and identify those responsible. The mainstream media is always trying to catch up and Channel 4 News has its own “Fact Check Blog“.
There are a number of websites which look at media press reporting of specific issues. We draw attention to two:
- Trans Media Watch – this provides “guidance for the media when portraying transgender people”
- Travellers Times Media Watch – looks at what the media are saying about Gypsy, Roma and Traveller culture.
Once again, apologies for those we have missed out – let us know your details and we will add you to this post. If you blog or write on the web about media accuracy we would like to hear from you.
Fuller lists of Media Blogs and Media Organisation Media Blogs can be found on the Resources section of the Media Standards Trust website. In addition, there is also a list of International Media Blogs.