Sunday, April 26, 2009

Convention Coverage ~ It Is, What It Is

When I was a child, my father used to say to me, 'it is, what it is'. He'd say this while gently urging me not to make something out of nothing and to focus on what was. What was, generally turned out to be pretty good when I took the time to look. His intent was not to stifle my imagination. To the contrary in fact. He encouraged me to build on and expand the reality around me.

Last week on Politics with Don Newman, Joan Bryden (CP) (seen above), was identified as someone who would be covering the upcoming Liberal Convention. The assignment was not depicted as being...um, 'plum' shall we say. In fact, they all had a good chuckle suggesting that Bryden drew the short straw. Rob Russo, (CP), made some points though about this being an opportunity for the Lib's.

He was full of analogies, not bad ones imo, but in the end it occurred to me that the press is looking for policy. I think they are looking at being able to create a framework on which they can tell the story of the Liberal option versus the Conservative option. I understand the angst, but for the moment, it is what it is.

Bryden generally presents a pretty considered portrait of events. Whether I agree with what she has to say or not, I enjoy her articles. I wondered though as I read this, whether or not it was really news. I suppose the irony of it all supports the story, but I can't help but feel that the railing against Dion, even in a backhanded or subtle way has been done to death. The general population no longer cares and those of us who supported him are looking forward to seeing the respect he had before being excoriated by the Conservatives and the press, brought back into focus, (pun intended).

That being respectfully done, I think it might be underestimated just how content many of us are to move forward. Anyone with any sense realises that it is important to have a strong official opposition. I think the Convention might surprise some and if Canadian media chose to give it short shrift, they will be making a mistake in my view.

So, back to Bryden. One reason I like her is that she was very candid when she was laid off by CanWest. To the best of my knowledge, she did not resign but once gone, she did not hold back in describing just how strong the push was to report from a specific slant. She was open about the pressure she received to ask specific questions and to have her stories conform to a particular point of view. That candor spoke volumes, so if she has drawn the short straw, so be it.

The Convention will, be what it will be, and my hope is that the coverage will build on and expand on what is, rather than what some may want it to be.

4 comments:

Cari said...

I heard the American media is coming to record the event.Ignatieff has lot of friends from Harvard and about.

RuralSandi said...

Why can't they just leave Dion alone. Leave him some dignity. He failed as a leader - that's it. He's not an axe murderer, corporate fraudster, animal beater - he's a guy who gave it a try, period.

Our media are like children. They are probably upset that some US media are going to be there - so, put the event down a little. That'll fix it.

You can't win with them. They make fun of the big hoopla and then when it's not so big - they put it down.

Perhaps the media should get back to being the voice of the people as it was originally intended 400 years ago. Yup, Quebec City had the first newspaper/the voice of the people.

Now it's sarcasm, opinion, and obsession with petty things and scandals and gaffes, and they wonder why they're losing their audience.

KNB said...

Yes, I heard that too Cari.

I don't know how that will translate to coverage South of the border, but there is obvious interest in Ignatieff and that is good.

KNB said...

I know Sandi. Here's an interesting overview of the convention.