Can You Hear Me Now?

24 Aug

Fifth article in our series on the Paparazzi/Gossip Industry.

By:  Parisienne

The family of Milly Dowler has received an apology from Rupert Murdoch himself.  In 2011, News of the World was shut down due to a phone hacking scandal. Why?Journalist of the paper hacked into the voice mail messages of Milly Dowler a 13 year old abducted in 2002.  Levi Bellfield was convicted of murdering Dowler in 2011.

The family said they considered the paper to be a “friend” to them.  The voice mail messages were hacked into and then deleted once the voice mail became full. The Prime Minister has launched an investigation into the hacking and also the ethics of the press.[1]

What do you think can be done to restore the public’s faith in journalism?

Also see: Advances in Paparazzi Technology

Please join us for a discussion: Thursday 8/25/2011@7pmE/12UTC

Advertisements

98 Responses to “Can You Hear Me Now?”

  1. comic relief August 24, 2011 at 11:28 AM #

    Paris,

    Short yet appropriately sick.

    Ya know, when we first talked about doing this series I didn’t know what I thought. I think I thought something juvenile like “scandal rags, camera flashes, and high octane gossip.”

    Instead it’s been a steady stream of depression, bag news, and super sleeze since day one. Now I can’t believe LB pitched this.

    I don’t have anything else say.

    • Parisienne August 24, 2011 at 4:41 PM #

      CR,

      I completely agree with you. Its absolutely sickening what is going on today with the media. Although I do think this needs to be shown in order to “open people’s eyes” to what is going on in journalism today. Unless journalism can return to being true journalism and not “spying” on people, it will continue to be depressing and super sleazy.

      • Open Book August 25, 2011 at 1:45 PM #

        Great topic and article Paris.

        Have a lot of Q’s:

        Do u think consumers today like to not be challenged by the media so they don’t have to make sacrifices or have it interfere with their everyday lives?

        • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 3:05 PM #

          OB!

          I think that is a great question and….and….dang’t I just had a thought and now it vanished! Ugh…I’ll be back. 🙂

        • Parisienne August 30, 2011 at 7:06 PM #

          Open Book,

          IMO, consumers don’t like to be challenged by the media so they don’t have to think and take responsibility for what is going on around them.

  2. Francesa August 24, 2011 at 8:03 PM #

    ITA that it is down right revolting what is going on today with the media. But with that being said I really don’t think most people even care. Whether is it politics, gossip or just every day articles. There is no accountability or responsibility for that matter from journalists. Looking at the last few years, Dan Rather on TV, the reporter from the NY Times (can’t remember is name) and even “A Million little pieces by James Frey. Bad journalism is in every facet of media. Until we as the public demand as Parisienne said “true journalism” do we ever really see it ending any time soon? I think not, and with the internet and all the social media sites will there ever be “true journalism” again?

    • Lurker August 24, 2011 at 8:07 PM #

      True journalism requires a code of ethics. None of which we see anymore in news reporting. Its no longer ‘objective’, it’s subjective with the appropriate amount of spin necessary to sway your audience.

      Will it come back? Doubtful, we are in the news snippet world where everything comes down to the best sound byte.

      But then, there are no ethics left in politics either. (totally off topic I know)

      • Open Book August 25, 2011 at 1:39 PM #

        Hi Lurker!

        So nice to have u back!!

        To piggy back on what u said: “Its no longer ‘objective’, it’s subjective with the appropriate amount of spin necessary to sway your audience.”

        I think we are in a new day given peoples access to social media. I think it’s up to consumers to define what they want to get out of news. Today’s journalism is being built by “The Wild Wild West.” As consumers we need to educate ourselves and get involved to get better content IMO!

      • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 5:32 PM #

        LURKER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Its great to have you back!

        • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 7:10 PM #

          Hey guys!

          • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 7:21 PM #

            LURKER! *hugs* Welcome back! I’ve missed you! 🙂

            • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 7:29 PM #

              🙂

              Sorry, Just hung up the phone! I can chat now!

              Did a lot of reading last night.
              You guys have been doing great!

  3. Littlebells August 24, 2011 at 9:57 PM #

    Hi Lurker! Welcome back!

    CR–I am so sorry that this topic has left such a bad taste for you. I never intended for this topic to make anyone feel depressed or sick. 😦 I was curious if there was more info on paparazzi after reading one of OB’s posts. Unfortunately it is a sleazy topic, but I have learned a lot from our discussions and have a better appreciation of what stars and future stars have to deal with.

    Francesa and Paris–journalism today is such a joke and I agree with your comments. I can’t even imagine what professors are teaching their students. I don’t see this sleaze ending any time soon. I think it is undoubtedly going to be left to us, within our own homes, to teach the importance of ethics (lurker 😉 ) and morals. We will need to teach all those around us what is good and right and instill in them those same high standards.

    Unfortunately the gossip industry is so huge, that it would require amputation to resolve the problem. It’s beyond band aids and ace bandages.

    Just remember that whatever good we send out into the world is being passed along. 🙂 Try not to dwell on all the awfulness that is out there, because there is plenty of goodness. Sometimes we just have to dig a little more to find it! 🙂

    • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 1:07 PM #

      LB,

      I’m sorry. I wasn’t blaming you. That was my initial reaction to the article which has been pretty continuous since we started this.
      This was not your fault!!! You do research, you find out stuff, then you write about it. The results have been sad but I did not mean to blame you.

      Unfortunately I can’t erase what I said.

      Please ignore me.

      • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 3:03 PM #

        No worries, CR. 🙂

  4. Open Book August 25, 2011 at 1:51 PM #

    LB and CR-

    This topic is not pleasant but in order for things to change I think u need to talk about it. Otherwise it just sits around in the dark and grows. That’s what I hoped to do in embracing this series LB promoted. I’ve written about it in the past yes, but I thought we could benefit from looking at it from a few more different perspectives. It’s such a big topic with so much history I still don’t think we have cracked the surface.

    • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 3:51 PM #

      THanks OB!

      I thought this article was pretty good. I like the idea that “civilian journalism” is not professional journalism. I like that this man does not want to sell “lower quality news.”

        • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 4:15 PM #

          Also, what do you think of this?
          http://pressthink.org/

          • Open Book August 25, 2011 at 7:08 PM #

            Great article LB! Interesting to see how CNN manages reporting down the middle news. That seems like such a grand thing in this day and age. What do u think? Given how people like to be spoon fed what to think.

            • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:14 PM #

              I don’t like fence sitting. It’s always been a pet peeve. Either fall one way or another.

          • Open Book August 25, 2011 at 7:11 PM #

            Great article LB! Interesting to see how CNN manages reporting down the middle news. That seems like such a grand thing in this day and age. What do u think? Given how some people like to be spoon fed what to think. Do u think what CNN is attempting to do is possible?

            • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 7:32 PM #

              Do you guys think CNN reports down the middle????
              LOL

              I don’t. I think they are obviously slanted and I can provide an example.

              On one of the nights of a political event, they did a CNN poll and only asked one side of the argument for a response but then tried to play that off as an objective poll. I was incensed enough to not watch CNN for that type of news any longer.

              • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:55 PM #

                Honestly, I don’t even watch CNN anymore after the times I saw “ON E! it was reported….” blah, blah, blah.

                Great example! Honestly, I rely on local news and the evening news. And I do like Dateline.

  5. comic relief August 25, 2011 at 4:31 PM #

    Cool articles, LB. Regarding the discussion; this should be good.

  6. Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 5:33 PM #

    Everyone,

    I will be late to the discussion but I will catch up. 🙂

  7. Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 6:59 PM #

    Hi Everyone!

    • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:07 PM #

      Hi Littlebelles, and everyone.

      • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 7:20 PM #

        Hi all! Just catching up with the comments.

        • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:20 PM #

          Hi, Ozzie.

  8. comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:12 PM #

    LB,

    It’s hard to discuss the Murdock issue without Paris, but maybe we could discussthis later.

    I thought your article on citizen journalists was very interesting. I wondered what you thought about that regarding their professionalism. I have gone to many sites that are obsessed with providing “scoops” and I have often wondered whether this obsession is even acceptable if a strong editorial direction is not present.

    • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:24 PM #

      Well, compared with civilian journalists, professionals research until they have accurate information. They don’t want their hard efforts to blow up in their face. Civilians/citizens post what they’ve “heard” or “read” but don’t have much to back up their information. When news channels, like CNN or Fox or whatever report information that has been previously seen on E! or any other showbiz channel/blog, its very disheartening.

      I don’t like the word “scoop” because it’s become synonymous with “gossipy, sleazy, slander”. Well for me anyway. Informative news that is accurate is much more respectable. I think respectable editors make sure to keep their work professional.

      Shoot, did that answer your question?

      • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:32 PM #

        I believe you did. I fear the “scoop” mentality also. MOST OF THE TIME, I believe it’s best to leave it to the professionals.

        On the other hand if others “reporters” want to reveal their citiations and the sources for their material; I’m not inclined to call it gossip.

        • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:39 PM #

          That’s a great point. Name your “source”! If a “source” is willing to share their information they shouldn’t be afraid to have their name put out there.

          • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:54 PM #

            It’s really not my point; to be honest academic institutions and reputable journalistic organizations do it all the time.

  9. comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:22 PM #

    LB,

    I guess we may be still waiting for others to appear, but I guess the reason I am asking is it seems like the “citizen journalist” is a response to lapses on the part of the established news media.

    Mainly claim they are
    – intentionally biased toward sponsors.
    – are politically committed to special interests.
    – not very inclusive

    LB, since you posted the articles, do you think these charges are correct? And do you think more citizen journalists will resolve this problem?

    • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:31 PM #

      Mmm….good question. I think what has happened is with the explosion of social media, more CJs are able to give their two cents worth to the news world. And unfortunately if you hear something you like, you are going to tend to believe whether it is true or not. Does that make sense?

      I think with social media so accessible, it’s making it much harder for those journalists that ARE trying to make a difference and give us factual news.

      I think CJs are guilty of these charges. Maybe not all, but a lot. Hang on…I’ve got a thought brewing, but it’s taking some time to formulate it. 🙂

      • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:37 PM #

        Take your time. Your original thought made sense. I think like you I am of afraid of the lack of accountability.

        Many sites that I don’t respect claim thweir information is a product of “INSIDERS”. this makes the reporter a defacto insider as well. Unfortunately this is the only reason for expressing the fact in the first place.

  10. Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:35 PM #

    CR,

    Why do you think major news stations resort to blogs, tweets, entertainment shows for information? That seems so absolutely ridiculous to me!!!!

    • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:39 PM #

      I AGREE. Journalism seems to think they had better corner the market on entertainment or they may loose out on advertising dollars.

      • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:41 PM #

        LB,

        Referring to your other recent post. I understand why we want CNN to do journalism correctly. I’m really disturbed by all of the rampant abuses by the press. But can we really expect journalism to cover news the way it was always executed when communication has changed so radically.

        In terms of entertainment audiences are debating the relative strengths of treatments of well known novels and other material; in fact your site plans to do that as well.

        I know we have to fear that amatures address fact poorly but in the case of entertainment, Audiences don’t care whether the producer, director, actors, “artistes” etc. EVENTUALLY get it right. They want assure that they get their money’s right if they pay for the film at theatres.

        • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:44 PM #

          …sorry I meant “money’s worth”.

        • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:46 PM #

          WEll I think they do have to make changes just because, as you said, communication has changed so radically, but ensuring the information is CORRECT is still important.

          I think with entertainment, at least with our site, it’s more or less our opinion. We aren’t stating anything as fact, thank goodness! 🙂 Shoot, I would love to interview our authors!

          • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:58 PM #

            Though I agree with you, building an argument on the work of other reputable speakers and writers can build the kind of credible argument that people are inclined to respect.

            That’s what I appreciate the most about what we do.

            • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:07 PM #

              Personally generated, many sites I can’t stand just bark out a bunch of garbage and other false facts. Somehow because they said it; it’s true.

              I believe credibility is earned, demonstrated, and maintained. I don’t think that’s traditional, old, or new journalism; I think that reliable reporting.

              If you are inclined to read the other, I think you might unfortunately deserve it.

            • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:08 PM #

              *thumbs up* (and I meant the book club site) 🙂 I agree that what we are doing here is very respectable.

              • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:19 PM #

                we wouldn’t do anything less. 🙂

              • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:26 PM #

                Regarding the BOOK CLUB SITE is you are exercising your right to speak and be heard. We don’t have to wait for Roger Ebert, Simon Cowell, or Anthony Bourdain to tell us how to speak, think, or respond. That’s very old. I believe this interactive aspect of the web is still very new and precious.

                Handled respectably, this makes no attempt to depose serious journalism nor does it diminish or trivialize the role of free speech.

                • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:29 PM #

                  Thanks CR! 🙂

      • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:41 PM #

        Yeah, but they are losing respectability which is a real shame. It’s going to come back and haunt them in the end.

        I know Paris is not here at the moment, but Ozzie, maybe you can help us out: what are all the major companies Murdoch had a hand in? I remember reading somewhere that he owned this and that which was a partner with the other and so forth…..

        • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 7:44 PM #

          I had heard the NY Times for one.

          • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:45 PM #

            Hi Lurker.

            • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 7:58 PM #

              Hi CR!

          • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 7:48 PM #

            Wow. I’m going to go have to research…..

            • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 7:57 PM #

              If I remember correctly most of the British printed press. Just before the scandel broke he was after Sky News which is televised, not printed.

              • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:00 PM #

                mmmm, interesting! Thank you. 🙂

                • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 8:04 PM #

                  Even before the scandal there was talks about how much Murdoch should own. A lot of people aren’t impressed the amount he owns. He’s had to give up plans of buying Sky news for now, anyway.

                  • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:07 PM #

                    I thought he bought BskyB. Is that not the same thing?

                    • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 8:15 PM #

                      Yes, that’s the company’s name but the news channel is called Sky news.

              • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 8:00 PM #

                Well you know the scandal sunk his chances of doing that merger. Maybe is was planned? They had to know this was going on all along. Maybe they were waiting to play the hand to sink him? I love conspiracy plots!

                • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:12 PM #

                  Hmmmmmm????? Are saying you wonder whether he used this scandal to sneek out of merger that was already in progress?

                  Well, now we’ve heard of scandal to promote business, and I guess you’re talking about scandal to stop business?

                  • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 8:16 PM #

                    I personally believe they knew these hacking events were going on (that’s why all the people resigned so quickly) and they overlooked it.
                    My personal belief is that they couldn’t sack Rupert Murdock without the scandal. So it was pocketed until the right opportunity. When the ‘potential merger’ was announced the news story about the hacking was leaked. Timing is very very suspicious to me.

                    • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:29 PM #

                      I have seriously missed your business perspective.

                      Please promise to never leave again.

                      Just kidding.

                      Sort of…

                    • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 8:33 PM #

                      Thanks!
                      Well think about it this way. If they had come out with the scandal he would have lawyered up and it would have disappeared.

                      Instead they get him while he’s vulnerable because all mergers have to get gov’t approval.

                      What better way to oust someone whose believed to be ‘untouchable or too powerful’.
                      Create enough of a scandal when he needs friends to approve a merger!

                      Great timing if you ask me!

        • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:04 PM #

          LB,

          To answer your question. Rupert Murdoch has/had his hand in over 800 companies. BskyB and others.

          • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:07 PM #

            Holy guacamole!!!!

            • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:08 PM #

              LOL.

          • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 8:10 PM #

            He did in fact have a huge conglomerate of companies in all facets of network news, publishing, film and entertainment.
            You can see all the logos of the companies and lists of all the print newspapers on their site.

            http://www.newscorp.com/

            I was wrong – it was the Wall Street Journal not the NY Times that was shocking to me.

            • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:11 PM #

              Thanks for the info, Lurker. 🙂

  11. comic relief August 25, 2011 at 7:42 PM #

    I’m having computer problems I may have to leave and come back.

  12. Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:00 PM #

    Hi All!

    • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 8:04 PM #

      Hi Paris!

      • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:06 PM #

        Hi Ozzie!

        • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:08 PM #

          Hi Paris.

          • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:10 PM #

            Hi CR.

  13. Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:14 PM #

    So what becomes of someone like Murdoch if he is found guilty of all charges? He sits in some fancy cell somewhere?

    • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:16 PM #

      I would think so. IMO, what he did is morally and ethically wrong on so many levels its not funny.

      • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:19 PM #

        But you and I both believe in Karma and whether it hits him now or later, it’s gonna get him, whether directly or indirectly. The minute he started sinking to the sleazy, scummy level, his karma was coming right back at him. MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

        • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 8:24 PM #

          I hope he get’s what he deserves but I don’t think it will. The blame will be put on someone who worked at News of the world.

          • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:28 PM #

            Probably not, but he can’t hide from the Big Man.

            • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 8:29 PM #

              That’s true! 🙂

        • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:31 PM #

          so true.

      • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 8:19 PM #

        Yes, he’ll be sitting in a prison cell like Bernie Madoff!

        • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:32 PM #

          perhaps he and bernie will be bunk mates and then they can plot their take over of the world while trying to get out of their cage. (think pinky and the brain) LOL

          • Lurker August 25, 2011 at 8:40 PM #

            True, it would be funny!

            • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:45 PM #

              LOL

  14. Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:33 PM #

    Paris, have you ever heard of any law enforcement being paid off in the states, in regards to situations like this? Forgive my ignorance to this question. I’m assuming if we have I’ve been under a rock or it hasn’t come out yet. I know there are dirty cops and dirty departments, but I was just wondering…..

    • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:35 PM #

      yes. imo it happens alot.

  15. comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:38 PM #

    Paris,

    Because we so often do not hear of the results, complications, and human costs due to Murdock’s form of blackmail and harassment, how do you believe celebrity victims like Hugh Grant go forward?

    Has Murdock’s vilification benefitted him in any significant ways? I’m not talking about money whether that will be part of the settlement or not.

    • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:43 PM #

      Didn’t he wear a wire?

      • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:47 PM #

        Are you claiming this was his only satisfaction. That dude has been at the tail end of alot of scandal reporting.

        You don’t think he may have had some empowerment returned to him? or some sense of personal agancy restored.

        No one seems to account for celebrities need and desire for personal privacy…

    • Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:44 PM #

      honestly i don’t think it will benefit him in any way other than getting the truth out. IMO

  16. Parisienne August 25, 2011 at 8:47 PM #

    Everyone,

    I’m going to go for the night! I enjoyed the discussion. If there are any questions i missed I will come back to them later.

    • comic relief August 25, 2011 at 8:49 PM #

      I have to leave to.

      Thanks for the discussion Paris, it was very enlightening.

      Thanks LB for the series idea. I hope no hard feelings 🙂

      • Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:51 PM #

        None at all. 🙂

  17. Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:50 PM #

    My question to everyone is this: In researching this topic, what has had the most impact for you personally and what are you willing to do to contribute something positive to this negative topic?

    For example, I have learned that paparazzi are more ruthless than I thought with the use of all their devices. I won’t buy any more rag mags, no matter how tempting. I don’t go to blogs or other websites as it is. And if I ever meet someone famous, I can’t say I wouldn’t want to go up and say hi and then tell my friends. Well chances of that happening are slim anyway, so I guess the only thing I can contribute is NOT my money and teaching my children to seek only for TRUTH.

  18. Littlebells August 25, 2011 at 8:51 PM #

    Night everyone!

    • ozzie20 August 25, 2011 at 8:56 PM #

      I’ll bid everyone a good night too! My brain has pretty much shut down for the night!

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: