Phew back to normal as Herald publishes inadequate SNP-bad stuff again


Here’s the headline:

‘SNP ministers struggling to deliver hit 100% superfast broadband’

It’s a bit of an SNPBad parody this one, with ‘SNP Government’ replacing ‘Scottish Government’ more than once and ‘SNP Minister’ replacing ‘Scottish Government Minister’. These choices of terminology reveal ideology. The writer’s clear agenda is to attack a political party rather than report factually or objectively.

Anyhow, the main issue here is ‘Where does the responsibility lie for the delivery of superfast broadband?’

It’s a very long piece with space for Jamie Greene MSP to suggest again that ‘Scotland has fallen behind England.’

What’s wrong with the piece is, first, its failure to include any consideration of the UK government’s role in this. Nearly a year ago, The Ferret did a fact check on this and found in the end:

‘While the Scottish Government has some measure of control over broadband projects, telecommunications including broadband infrastructure are ultimately still reserved by Westminster, limiting the level of decision-making available to Scottish ministers.’

And, second, missing from the Herald piece was this key contextual factor:

‘Scotland has unique difficulties in rolling out coverage to rural areas, with BT stating that the country has the “most significant geographic challenges in the UK, and arguably in Europe, when it comes to deploying fibre [broadband]”.’

Why would a Scottish newspaper, with a sale or two in the Highlands and Islands, not want to discuss these unique difficulties? Aren’t they needed in giving readers a full account?


7 thoughts on “Phew back to normal as Herald publishes inadequate SNP-bad stuff again

  1. Alasdair Macdonald September 20, 2018 / 8:43 am

    One of the final items on Good Morning Scotland this morning was a report on this, which headlined that an Audit Scotland report had indicated that the 2021 SG target might not be met, without a review of funding. This was followed by an interview of the minister, Mr Michael Mathieson by Ms Gillian Marles. Interestingly she adopted a non-partisan line and allowed him to speak at length without interruption. He was able to make the points that the Herald omitted and to point out that telecoms is retained at Westminster and that the SG has made a decision within the restrictive context to deal with the specifics of parts of Scotland. This is exactly the kind of thing that devolution is designed to do. If there were devolution in England, then the local government could make decisions about, say, the West Country, rural Yorkshire, Northumbria, the Lake District which also have telecoms, black spots.

    Liked by 2 people

    • John September 20, 2018 / 10:48 am

      Maybe Marles remembered the awful interveiw she had with Jamie Hepburn and heard how her diatribe sounded , for which she was well ridiculed on social media .

      Liked by 1 person

      • Alasdair Macdonald September 20, 2018 / 1:02 pm

        I suspect that because it was nearly the end of the programme, she wanted her coffee and bacon roll and could not be arsed pursuing any line of enquiry.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Sandy Merry September 20, 2018 / 12:09 pm

    That’s why I would never buy the Herald. They are doing away with the only Sunday newspaper which was even vaguely supportive of Scotland and replacing it with this garbage. Deserve to go down the drain like the rest of them. There are no journalists worth the name at the Herald. Was going to say working at the Herald but that would be a contradiction in terms.

    Liked by 1 person

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