Hundreds of television journalists have taken photographs of themselves with bands of sticky tape fixed to their anuses.
The images form part of a campaign aimed at telling the world the relentless stream of crap known as ‘rolling news’ must never be stemmed by a return to more traditional journalistic values, such as proportion and relevance.
The TV journalists’ protest began as a backlash against so-called ‘citizen journalism’, in which ordinary people who actually know what’s happening report on news events via social networking sites and blogs.
Putting the case for 24-hour TV news over citizen journalism, amateur ballroom dancer-cum-news anchor Chris Hard said, “When a story breaks, who would you rather get your information from - some guy on the street who has lived there all his life, speaks the local language, knows the political system and cultural dynamics inside out? Or some posh bloke like me in a suit who’s been flown out to wherever the latest eye-catching disaster has occurred to pretend to answer pre-scripted questions from a similarly pompous tit in a studio in central London? I know my answer. And that’s why I’ve taped up my arse.”
Adding her weight to the campaign, celebrity amateur figure skater and part-time newsreader Lorna Robertson said, “The world needs us to speak truth to power. All day and all night. Even if we don’t know the truth because the event hasn’t even happened yet and there’s no power to speak to because it’s 4am and the bloody prime minister’s still asleep. Without endless, live speculation from outside a building where an important person works, our democracy would be dead. We may as well up and go to Pyongyang. And that’s why I’ve taped up my arsehole and taken a photo of myself.”
The campaign has also been endorsed by a number of high-profile figures from the world of print journalism. Though it’s been reported that there simply wasn’t enough tape available in the United States when both Piers Morgan and Rupert Murdoch attempted their selfies.