Thursday 17 January 2013

I haven’t actually seen any news/weather warnings about the snow yet: but it feels liked have because of so many people talking about them on social media.

People in Scotland have been saying things like “I don’t think I can get out of my house due to the blanket of news coverage about snowfall the region is being subjected to.” (@Jockspunge9) And while Scottish people are not afraid of ending a sentence on a preposition it is no reason to put ignore their snow media houseboundness.

With the amount of rolling news to be dedicated to snowy conditions expected to peak tomorrow some business were already announcing that their offices would be closed to allow staff to remain safe at home, in front of the television – rather than struggling to watch it on their iPads on public transport with often cost-prohibitive 3G data.

But it’s not all about the general public trudging through the 24-hour rolling news coverage of meteorologists using lots of modal verbs to enforce that they’re only speculating about the  possibility that London could die as a result of a blizzard – if it was really, really bad. No, spare a thought for the presenters of the news and the weather reporters. A BBC spokesman claimed the army could be called in to help maintain the high levels of reporting on the crisis  “We wouldn’t have them on key areas like Breakfast or The One Show but we might have to have the forces come in to present weather reports and weather-based news items in the midnight-to-6am slot,” said a press release.

For some people the modern halt to which the country friends when there is ‘a bit of snow on the news’ makes them feel sick. My 103 year-old great uncle video-blogged, “It’s pathetic what is considered a lot of news coverage of inclement weather. When I was a lad there might be five hours of news coverage of snow on the wireless but I’d leave the terraced slum I lived in and the trams and buses would still be running unaffected. And if not I would walk to work, barefoot, and still be three hours early. Now people think the coverage of snow is a lot if it lasts 20 minutes. I shed a tear at what has happened to this once great nation.”

My great-uncle, like many old people, is someone society needs to be mindful of in these times of heavy news coverage of cold weather. Labour MP Andy Burnham appeared to be near tears as he quoted electricity bills faced by some of his elderly constituents, generated by watching rolling news coverage of the cold weather snap across the TV channels. “Why not have an elderly neighbour around to watch the weather at your house for a couple of hours? Even that could be enough to help them pay their TV license,” said a visibly moved Burnham – speaking from the abandoned shell of a pop-up HMV store.

I was also disappointed to hear that Lance Armstrong had won several libel cases against newspapers while using lies. I, like many, thought Armstrong was a hero for the way he fought against newspapers who accused him of dishonesty but it turns out he was powered by lies. I don’t know if I can ever trust another person suing a newspaper for lying again.

[This Lance Armstrong bit at the end is essentially the same joke as the main bit about the weather coverage – I talked about the news coverage as though it was the weather itself and here I am talking about Lance’s court cases as though they were his cycling victories, clever eh? so I couldn’t be bothered dragging it out.]

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