Community ‘news’ ain’t news . . . it’s puff

SaskTel, the provincially-owned Saskatchewan telecom, wants to operate a “community” television channel. It promises (wink, wink) the thing will have “journalistic independence.” But, later, a SaskTel vice-president says the pledge was made only because it’s a “requirement of the CRTC.”

That sounds to me as if the word “community” signals lip-service to journalism which will, at best, be warmed-over or straight press releases.

Breaking “community” news: “Deputy Premier and Regional Economic and Co-operative Development Minister Clay Serby announced at a press conference today that he is doing a ‘superb job’ and that his Cabinet colleagues – including the Premier -- all agree. Some sources in the government caucus said the extremely talented Minister Serby was performing ‘miracles’ equal to those of Tommy.”

Community “news” is good. It’s positive. It warms one’s cockles. It’s cheap. It’s inoffensive. It makes friends, boosts egos and fills space between ads. What’s to dislike and criticize? It even looks like the real stuff in The Globe and Mail.

The world needs more puff parades like The Regina Sun Community News stuffed with advertising flyers. The Leader-Post needs more “advertising features” to brighten up the otherwise dreary, negative news.

I wonder why the kids are no longer reading? Could the puff stuff be boring?

Those damned, negative journalists in Eye-rack, focusing all the time on a very few, small explosions here and there; once in a while; not very often; seldom killing people. It’s so non-community and negative.