Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Mcintosh Polela, lazy journalism and faux outrage

I've always maintained that what happens on twitter should not constitute news.  That's where people go to live their lives in the parallel universe of cyberspace.  Journalists themselves insist that they tweet their personal views and  but it seems they don't offer the same courtesy to other people.  If you have a public profile, your tweets will be associated with your job; especially if they happen to not chime with their sensibilities.  

At least that's what Hawks spokesperson, Mcintosh Polela found out yesterday when he tweeted:

Admittedly it's not a happy-clappy tweet, which is the preferred twitter tone for public figures, but if you don't share his dark sense of humour, you'd just wince and move on.  Not if you're a lazy journalist looking for a cheap story to send to a news agency and knowing that news websites will lap it up and stir up some sort of scandal.  Predictably, two news sites have already published the SAPA story and moralists are queueing up to either express outrage and or demand and apology.

If only we journalists could tackle real news with the same amount of enthusiasm, maybe we wouldn't have a small amount of people robbing the country blind while the majority languish in abject poverty.  Somebody once said freedom of speech is wasted on South Africans and I fear they may have been right.

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