Read all about it in The Observer. John Naughton comments on the rough ride apparently given to the Naked Conversations authors on a visit to Amazon. Naughton feels Amazon may live to regret this iconaclasm, but I also feel that their book is fun but flawed. Yet I sincerely regret my thoughtless charge of bias against it.
Bias need not be bad. Public relations may operate as ‘weak propaganda’, but the bias is declared. Some journalists and editors are clearly biased – and their readers love them as a result. The Daily Mail has a clear political and social bias; it’s also a hugely successful newspaper operation. Readers have a choice of newspapers and a spectrum of political and social opinions they can hold.
The next spat is reported by Peter Preston. It involves defections from the high-minded Editorial Intelligence project started by public relations practitioner-professor Julia Hobsbawm. Preston hears the sound of name calling between pots and kettles:
Forget the story of gallant journalists taking on spin doctors in some ultimate battle of good and evil. It is self-serving and self-deluding garbage.