OPINION

Sensation and lies on private television

The heads of television channels, news editors and presenters should not complain about the mistrust with which the public regards their work, which they refer to as «reliable and informative» but which is actually no more than a carefully planned show intended to boost ratings. Sometimes these programs feature heated debates with politicians and journalists bawling at each other from television «windows.» At other times they feature «exclusive» interviews with individuals who have ostensibly suffered some misfortune or other, exploiting human pain to attract more viewers. Although difficult to prove, it is clear that even those viewers who opt to watch the so-called news bulletins on television do not do so to be informed but to be entertained, to kill some time watching public figures loudly reproach each other in the familiar game of point scoring. The lengths to which private channels will go to promote themselves as the most dependable news provider was made clear earlier this week when both Mega and Alpha claimed to be interviewing Greek basketball team coach Panayiotis Yiannakis live following the national team’s success at the European Championship finals in Belgrade. The only thing both channels achieved was to confirm the suspicion that what they dish up every night as «information» is nothing more than a fraudulent spectacle…