Bad Journalism

Sky News brought a nice little article to my attention. When they showed the front pages for Tuesday the 25th, we got to see the headline “Flight MH370 ‘suicide mission’“. Do I agree? The simple answer is that I cannot tell as I have not seen the evidence. Can anyone tell me what and where the evidence is?
When we read the quote the Sydney Morning Herald we see: “The newspaper report, which appears on the front page of Tuesday’s edition, was based on what it claimed were ‘well-placed sources’. But they contrast with official statements from Malaysian authorities, who say that the focus of the investigation is moving away from the pilots” (at http://www.smh.com.au/world/mh370-crashed-in-suicide-mission-britains-the-daily-telegraph-newspaper-reports-20140325-hvmf1.html).
So what are these ‘well-placed sources’? Is it perhaps possible that that Editor Ian MacGregor had his pants on his ankles and was getting serviced by an Asian person who knew a friend of a cousin from a sister-in-law’s cousin twice removed who is dating a technician who presses the plane gas refill pump switch? I am just wondering what these ‘well-placed’ sources are. I have nothing against Mr MacGregor, I just think that the article was a bad one and as such, as editor of the Daily Telegraph, the finger should be pointed at him for allowing this on page one, especially as there is no evidence at present, other than the events surrounding flight MH370 were abnormal. Placing a picture of a person in flight outfit shows even less good judgement, especially if this person ends up being one of the victims. The upside is that I hope that once that person in the picture is shown to be innocent so that the Daily Telegraph gets to pay a multi-million pound settlement to the family of the man in the photo.
Another quote in the article was
this has been a deliberate act by someone on board who had to have had the detailed knowledge to do what was done … Nothing is emerging that points to motive“, that part could be true!
In my view I do not know what happened. We can speculate in all kinds of directions, and in that regard the two options I had in mind did not involve the crew. The first obvious speculation was terrorism. If we consider the security improvements on airports, my thought was to hijack the plane, land it in a remote and unused airfield, get rid of the passengers and crew and load up the plane with nasty stuff. The second plane gets crashed into the ocean whilst the first plane takes over the identity of the second plane crashing on a large city. The systems would unlikely to see the danger until the plane was in visual sight and that was as it was going straight down.
The second speculation is less horror, more greed. The plane gets hijacked and landed somewhere (like in speculation one). The people are ‘dealt’ with and the plane gets the chop shop act. Consider the amount of planes that need parts, spare parts and service. One plane will hold for several millions in goods, not to mention many other parts that could fetch a price as well as tons of fuel. The scattered parts will be dumped in a deep ocean and no black box is found.
These two are purely speculation, they could be the makings of a serious B-Movie, but they are not based on reality. That same light should be used for the article in the Daily Telegraph. In the end, perhaps there is a truth in what the Daily Telegraph wrote, yet as many are trying for coverage and visibility, speculation in newspapers on an event like flight MH370 is a bad thing. It is less so in my blog as this is just my view on matters and my blog is not here to ‘impress’ on advertisement space on a national level. Consider the facts, the fact that the plane remained invisible on national military radar in more than one nation, the fact it went back over the land and go in a complete opposite direction and the fact that there has been utter silence.
Now I will give you a third scenario. It is not real; it came from TV, specifically the cliff-hanger for Ghost Whisperer season 1. In those final two episodes a plane crashes. What happens was that a MECHANICAL flaw made the plane lose pressure and all on board fell asleep. If the co-pilot was in the cockpit, perhaps he tried to reverse course but was no longer able to be completely coherent and as such the plane flies until there is no more fuel. Is this what happened? It is a speculation like anything else. This version has no malice, no guilty people, just a malfunction and an intensely sad consequence.
We do not know what happened, so we need the evidence, which makes the act by the Daily Telegraph, a place that might have hired a journalist or two even more unsettling. Any paper has its moments where a less evidence and more speculation piece makes it to the printer, yet to see this on page one is a lot less acceptable then page three of the Sun. It must be a proud moment for the Daily Telegraph, to get an article on page one with what I regard to have less journalistic value then the article in the Sun on page three (the one with the picture of the youthful young lady).

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Bad Journalism

  1. Pingback: Haystack, meet Needle! | Lawrence van Rijn - Law Lord to be

  2. Pingback: Haystack, meet Needle! | Lawrence van Rijn - Law Lord to be

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