18 June 2009

A bit o' bias

I must say, I wasn't too impressed with this BBC (magazine) article on battling the pirates

It is principally focused on trying to stop 'pirates', and then goes to pains to point out that people doing the downloading are using a false logic to justify what they do

This is one area I could see bias - it's rare that I find an article that I feel cheated by, most complaints of BBC bias are from right-wingers whinging the Beeb don't criticise gays or promote the death penalty

As I would say to them, it's because the law supports that position - you can't place a huge amount of emphasis on a minority group who oppose the right to be gay, they are allowed to exist of course, but you can't promote every group that opposes the law (although the BBC 'balance' policy may become that farcical one day)

If you look at more mainstream issues - there's plenty of space given to debate gay marriage, but there's little point pandering to a small group when society is broadly in favour and the law backs it up

The same goes for piracy, it is technically a crime - some areas are grey, but to give too much space to this sort of act would be very anti-establishment and would arguably be just as biased, I wouldn't expect it from the Beeb

I would expect a slightly less one-sided article, but welcome to the Magazine, it's a very strange and opinionated area of the site for old people - and I also remembered the fairer write-up the Pirate Party of Sweden got recently, and here's a clip from them

This article does grate at me, but thinking rationally I don't regard it as making the BBC biased, but what I will point out is the patronising of those who promote downloading as 'neutralisation' - there is no weight given to those theories and that I felt was going too far (allowing the industry to get their own way basically)

Issues such as regional coding, DRM, and exploitation are all valid - this is very much a battle between those who want to keep the power and those utilising a new method of distribution - for the article to simply belittle those arguments as being some sort of denial was wrong in my view

Just because there's a law against something doesn't make it wrong (so Lisa, go to your room) - when seven million people apparently break that law it means something needs to change, or be ignored (mince pies...)

What's the old adage - when one person does it, you arrest them, when five people do it, you move them along, when fifty people do it...you join in

You can't expect the BBC to promote it, just like they can't promote cannabis use - but they will do regular features on the issues because they are largely in the public interest

And as an aside - if the government actually want people to take note of their arguments they should stop lying in cannabis adverts - nobody trusts you to tell the truth so telling somebody 'piracy' is wrong is doing nothing when you aren't seen as a trustworthy public guardian

Aside #2 - why do Labour allow bullying in their 'knock-off Nigel' advert? As far as I'm aware it clearly promotes bullying of somebody doing something they dislike - calling a person names, seems pretty low to me, and if I were called Nigel I wouldn't be very impressed - should the government be picking on a name? Not that I hugely care, you understand, but that this government is so PC it seems rather hypocritical to me

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