Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Clean shirt golliness in haste

 The neurological deadline in media
 is unutterably severe. When a fact-
 check or a copyright citation can
 mean the difference between a hy-
 pothetical lawsuit and missing the
 entire Baltic plain on its way to
 work, not a few of us have made a
 concession or two, to bring timely
 solace to downtown Vilnius. But of 
 course, that is not what I mean.
 Nor is St Petersburg to blame.

No. It turns out, that in churning out the news and such comment as it may require (and coming from our Gothic culture in particular) one has no more than 5.5 seconds, tops, in image hang time, to register a clavicle before the reader's gaze. And it had better be a good one, or demand only spirals for ever costlier cuts. But can we, dear reader, shape our news as Mr Murdoch does, to suit the compulsive habits of a certain clientele, at the expense of all sanity?

We all have our Shetland memories of a kinder, gentler media world. If any of one's readers happened to be looking at the time, I think we would all be ever so glad if they would step forward now, to identify what precipitated this abrupt and, may I say, almost arbitrary demand for clavicle imagery, which has now become a baseline of expectation in our neue sachlichkeit of cognitive consensus. Was it to balance a flock of Falwellian blondes in Addison's and Steele's old perch, for which the once-proud pectoral parapet has been press-ganged into reportage? I shudder to speculate; but as I temporise on the side of truth, dawn encroaches upon Oslo ..


  1. i feel certain you must have seen the times last sunday...

    1. I've been known to muff a "must" or two on Sunday, so I couldn't precisely swear to have seen the Times, but I know I would have been trying to. :) What happened? Have we lost Vilnius again?

  2. A long and painful apology, about erroneous reportage - after the recent tragedy in connecticut. I'm afraid they reached tabloid level on this one. A woman in her eighties was quoted - " the times always got it right", when she wasn't sure about something, she could rely on the times."
    Subscription cancelled.
    More ways in which we prefer the instant over the accurate.

    1. That poor institution is becoming as famous for its apologies - as in its rousing sendup to the catastrophic, irreparable, and civil liberties-debauching invasion of Iraq - as it is for leading the blind just well enough to cling to a reputation for sight. Its frightening renown for febrility further subverts the legitimacy of its courage in occasional, selective penetrations of meretricious secrecy. Still, I think no one can afford to ignore it.

      I thank you for your visit and this contribution.