Pandemic shows why we need good journalism – Angus Robertson

I am really grateful to journalists working exceptionally hard in these difficult times, writes Angus Robertson.
Trusted news sources have never been more important (Picture: Andrew O'Brien)Trusted news sources have never been more important (Picture: Andrew O'Brien)
Trusted news sources have never been more important (Picture: Andrew O'Brien)

AS somebody who used to work full-time as a journalist, perhaps it’s no surprise that I think we should be grateful for the media here and around the world.

Of course, in normal times, many of us have gripes about certain newspapers, journalists and broadcasting organisations.

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Looking at the Covid-19 big picture for a second, however, how would we manage to understand what is happening at the moment without trusted news sources?

Social media has changed a lot in recent years. We can tune in directly to important briefings, such as those by the First Minister or from 10 Downing Street and also access a wide range of trusted reports.

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But we still need a wide range of media outlets and journalists to do the hard graft to keep governments and others on their toes and shine the light where otherwise the facts would stay in the darkness.

The pandemic has massively increased the financial pressure on media organisations. In recent weeks we have seen the West Highland Free Press cease production and the Jewish Chronicle and Jewish News close. Others will sadly follow.

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I for one am really grateful to all of those journalists who are working exceptionally hard in these difficult times and testing circumstances. Without radio and TV programmes being broadcast from studios and presenters’ living rooms, to journalists on the front line, including hospital intensive care units, we would not have dependable news on the coronavirus crisis.

Thank you for reading this article on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper.

Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the most rigorous standards in the world. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. So we need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.

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With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers - and consequently the advertising that we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news and information by buying a copy of our newspaper.

Thank you

Frank O’Donnell

Editorial Director