Travelblather

Lazy journalism, press releases and Ryanair

Why is the media such a slave to Ryanair's noisy PR? It's so lazy.

The front page headline today in UK tabloid newspaper the Daily Express screams: "Stand Up and Fly for a Fiver!" Just to reiterate: this is the newspaper's front page story. What it views as the most important story of the day.

It's Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary throwing silly scraps to the media as usual. It just mystifies me how this tripe can make front page news. Fair play to the guy (as long as he didn't pay to be there on the front page and I don't think we have reached that stage in the game... yet). But honestly has journalism stooped this low now?

In theory O'Leary reckons he will take out the rear rows of seats and some of the loos to have a standing/perching area at the back of the plane. Yes, that's correct, people travelling on planes, standing up - all the time. No seats - just a stool or something to lean on. Total and utter nonsense. The minute the plane hits serious turbulence the idea becomes completely ridiculous. For heaven's sake even the crew sit down during serious turbulence. And if you've been in a plane in proper, hardcore turbulence you will know what I mean. You need to be seated to be safe.

This idea will never ever get off the ground. Ever. But wow it makes a great headline doesn't it?

And... people already do 'fly for a fiver' sitting down on Ryanair (assuming that they will add all the additional charges like airport tax and baggage on top which of course they will). It's not even amazingly cheap! This bunch of baloney has also been around for months and months too. It was first reported a year ago (!).

Why is the Express running it now? Because there's a TV programme about budget airlines on ITV tonight. That's the reason. Nothing else.

This is such lazy journalism. Are we really saying that some half-baked old story from a year ago that O'Leary chooses to trot out again for a half hour TV show is the most important thing happening in the world today? It probably took the writer 20 minutes to write. (Nice work Donna Bowater.) It was almost certainly generated by an ITV press release. It really gets to me the way that journalists treat their readers with such contempt and disinterest - feeding them whatever tripe a PR chooses to pump at them. And being so gullible to believe it in the first place.

Arrogant, lazy, cheap.

If you wanted a clear sign of where the industry is headed at the moment - due in part to the plummeting ad revenue and declining readerships as a result of the internet - here it is. I'm no fan of Rupert Murdoch, but if this is the kind of junk 'news' has become I'll pay for something better.

What do you think?

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