Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sky News and Devolution

There is no doubt that the BBC on a UK level have become a million times better at noting when news items only refer to devolved or non devolved issues. Though I'd argue that there could be a bit more coverage of Welsh news, all in all, they certainly have to be congratulated on the improvement. Especially when you contrast the England centric nature of Sky News...

Now, I must admit. I do tend to watch Sky News more than News 24 if I'm trying to catch up with events outside of the Welsh bulletins. When a major event has taken place, the sensationalist nature of Sky News can be far more entertaining plus they usually cover breaking news slightly quicker. But, that doesn't stop me from getting frustrated during their normal bulletins.

In contrast to the BBC, Sky do not seem to take devolution into account. They announce and discuss government measures as though they apply to the UK as a whole, when in fact, many things relate to England only. This is extremely irresponsible, considering that a high percentage of people in Wales do subscribe to Sky. Don't Sky have a responsibility to deliver news that is accurate and reflective of the political reality?

I remember seeing the Assembly Member, Brynle Williams, being interviews last year on Sky as it was ten years since he came to prominence during the fuel protests. He was asked to comment on how the Tories were dealing with fuel prices, and what he thought of their handling of the situation. Not once was it mentioned that he is a Tory AM - in fact, I honestly don't think the interviewer knew this as he seemed perplexed that Brynle wasn't being critical.

that's just one examply. I think there is a real issue here, and one that needs to be addressed. Sky can't simply wipe out the political reality of devolution and present a distorted picture of the UK today. But what can we do to influence them? One thing we can all do is correct any inaccuracies, and email in to correct and complain when necessary. The voices of the people of Wales and our Senedd deserves to be heard. The BBC have woken up to this reality. Let's hope that it won't be too long until Sky News follows suite..