‘False balance’ and ‘bothsidesism’ on Good Morning Scotland

Brixton+Lambeth #StandUpX Anti-Lockdown Protest | kevinpcorbett.com

At 7:10am, GMS had Kevin Corbett on to argue for no more lock-downs and the freedom to go where you like without a face mask. They did interrogate and challenge his views but why did they have him on in the first place?

Some listeners may have been persuaded by him, may then follow his advice and put themselves and elderly relatives at risk.

There is no meaningful debate now on this issue. The evidence is in and all governments agree. See this from 8th July:

Oxford COVID-19 study: face masks and coverings work – act now https://www.ox.ac.uk/news/2020-07-08-oxford-covid-19-study-face-masks-and-coverings-work-act-now

Corbett is also an anti-vaccine protester. Would they give equal voice to those views? In England MMR uptake is worryingly low and deadly measles infections are spreading through some communities.

Would they give equal voice to scientists on both sides of the climate change debate even though the scientific community almost unanimously attributes global warming to the effects of human behaviour?

Would they give equal voice to those who believe in the freedom to smoke in public places and those who have proven beyond doubt that it kills?

Some people believe that sex with children is acceptable. The BBC has unfortunate history there.

This is False balance or bothsidesism:

media bias in which journalists present an issue as being more balanced between opposing viewpoints than the evidence supports. Journalists may present evidence and arguments out of proportion to the actual evidence for each side, or may omit information that would establish one side’s claims as baseless. False balance has been cited as a major cause of spreading misinformation.  

Boykoff, Maxwell T; Boykoff, Jules M (2004). “Balance as bias: global warming and the US prestige press”. Global Environmental Change14 (2): 125–136. doi:10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2003.10.001.

Why has GMS done this?

15 thoughts on “‘False balance’ and ‘bothsidesism’ on Good Morning Scotland”

  1. Having given the matter much serious consideration
    I have reached the firm conclusion and without any doubt
    That indeed ABC are in a permanent state

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Strange how they manage to ignore massive Independence marches. Discovered a new phrase yesterday ‘strategic ignorance’. This is the worst of Daily Mail type journalism, at least two days in a row. I am angry as hell. People will die because of this and the BBC is complicit.
    We really need trust in science to be strengthened because a miracle vaccine isn’t likely to happen and people are going to have to trust that vaccines will likely not work on everyone an could be as short lived as 12 months. Without trust we could very easily see an out of control resurgence of the pandemic and a total breakdown in the economy. The BBC is fuelling this science denial. Would they have smallpox deniers, Aids deniers on air. What the fuck have we become. Cummings jaunt(s) have not helped, it could even have been deliberate.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. anandprasad
      You Enquire as to what we have become as beholden by the ABC
      And not from any point of view other than that of the ABC
      We have never become and always have been Sheep and herded by the Collie dug
      Who only responds to the whistles of its Masters
      So a word of advice for any Sheep
      Remember more often than not the Collie dug drives their gathered herd up the ramp of the lorry that awaits them
      And mostly the destination is that of the
      How to deal with them @ ABC
      remove your clothing and be the wolf
      Merely grin and the wee dug shall cower
      Upon its corner
      Oblivious to its Masters shrill whistles

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “Why has GMS done this”?

    Because they are useless as journalists–this is supposed to be a news program.
    Because they want to be Shock Jocks–to drive up dreadful ratings.
    Because most, if not all, the loonies at these protest are Brit Nats—favourites of GMS who also seem to be prone to Libertanianism, conspiracy theories, right-wing media agitators, not wearing masks (unless its in aid of sexual deviancy) in public, being able to “press up” against other humans (who may not be approving), adherents of Trumpism, or just plain old nut jobs.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. The line that GMS wanted to push was the one which Gary Robertson announced in the headlines: “Is Scotland’s solidarity on restrictions breaking down?” Then we had Laura Maxwell intone, “Hundreds attended demonstrations in Glasgow and Edinburgh” This is less than 0.02% of the population.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The average time taken to develop a vaccine that works is TEN years

    OK much of the worlds science labs are working on it so a covid19 vaccine might be a bit quicker than the average but indeed covid19 is changeable fairly quickly in fact scientists say they know of five strains all slightly different which could fool your systems rendering a vaccine untrustworthy .

    Time will tell but the best way to avoid dying from covid19 that is known to humankind is still to not get it in the first place.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Indeed and to not get it in the first place, wear masks, wash hands, clean door handles, keep your distance, (we disinfect shopping and empty bags of fruit and veg out etc, it’s a nightmare but helps us feel better!) and follow real scientific advice. The deniers won’t be needing the NHS should they contract CV19 it seems.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. It is all designed to undermine the Scottish government’s approach of the past few months, which has greatly differed from that of the English governments’ approach which was to ‘take it on the chin’, ‘stay alert’ and now ‘get back to work!’

    The BBC would love to be reporting massive deaths from CV19 in Scotland, they really would revel in it. This idiotic minority of CV19 deniers are being given a voice, as you say in the article, it is based on nothing but ignorance. It’s very sinister, very dangerous and will result in people actually dying due to idiots spreading the virus, well, everywhere really.

    The Scottish government has taken scienfitic advice seriously, which has been as we all know, very successful in stemming the spread of this terrible virus. Sadly though the UK has now the worst reputation in the world and Scotland being shackled to this dysfunctional, dangerous ‘union’ is included in that.

    There are studies taking place all the time about the efficacy of face masks.

    Here is a recent one if you scroll down the page you will see other articles about research on this. It’s a mixed bag, but generally, wearing masks saves lives, to say the very least. I am surprised the police in the photo are not wearing masks, why not?


    Some animation to show that face shields are not really effective, (that seems to me to be obvious) but the article says that cloth and medical masks are very effective in containing droplets.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. John Beattie is to broadcast an interview wifh one of the speakers from the No Masks demonstration. Didn’t catch the name. . .


    1. Going to broadcast after 5pm. (Peak audience )

      Right(4.55pm) now he’s busy trying to undermine resturants and pubs asking for contact details.


  8. Why has GMS done this?

    I’ll hazard a guess that’s part wishful thinking and suggest it’s the result of a growing nihilistic zeitgeist within the concrete structure that is the physical building at Pacific Quay and within the collective mindset of those creatures who peddle their dark, deceitful arts therein.

    They see the writing on the walls and when they cast their unfortunate chicken’s giblets and bones it’s becoming increasingly clear even to these zealots that the war is all but lost.

    So they’re throwing everything and anything at us all now.


  9. Two worrying things about the video –
    1 If Dominic Cummings is so clever, how come he is so inarticulate?
    2 The caption under the first BoJaws appearance saying ‘Electoral Commission calls for May Elections to be postponed’.
    I certainly don’t like the second, but have never trusted the EC anyway. Can they stop the Hoyrood election if the Scottish government says it is going ahead?


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