Saturday, March 10, 2007

Television for grown ups

Congratulations to Channel Four for two programmes they showed this week. First The Great Global Warming Swindle (more background on Spiked): then Bring Back the Orphanage, which is discussed in the Guardian and on The ARCH Blog.

You don't have to accept the central thesis of either of these programmes to be pleased that ones like them can still be made and shown.

With a new series from Adam Curtis - The Trap: What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom (preview here) - starting on BBC tomorrow, for once we are being spoilt with intelligent television.

1 comment:

DrMaybe said...

"The Great Global Warming Swindle"? Oh yes, because those evil scientists really dominate the media and stop anyone presenting anything that disagrees with them.

Global warming sceptics get opportunities to declare their point of view far out of proportion to their presence in the scientific community, and many of them, as with this programme, spend much of the time rehashing old arguments that they claim are critical flaws when scientists working on it have already developed models that they believe explain the phenomena observed.

I'm particularly annoyed at programmes which state things as "facts" when they have no proof - like the claim that humans produce a tiny fraction of the CO2 produced by volcanoes. I'd love to see the citation for this claim, as in contrast, the US Geological Survey think that humans currently emit far more than volcanoes do (http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/Hazards/What/VolGas/volgas.html).

If Channel 4 were really brave, they'd commission a one-hour documentary about media scaremongering and misrepresentation of science.

This wasn't intelligent programming. It's programming for those who like to think they're intelligent.

There is the possibility to make an intelligent programme about the global warming debate - as there are those on the environmentalist side of things who hype things equally out of proportion and use unconnected facts to generate scare stories - but this certainly wasn't it.