Wednesday, 21 April 2010

French news: a national disgrace?

As I was watching the news bulletin earlier today, I felt really ashamed of my own country. French news on national channels are totally "France-centered" and international news are not treated unless it has a link with France. A few days ago, the top story was a French driving instructor who broke the speed limit on the motorway. Their story about the volcano ashes lasted only a few minutes, and then they spent 4 minutes talking about skiing, and another 5 minutes on migration of sheep in the French mountains. Half of the bulletin was dedicated to French cuisine, French movies and anything original produced by French people...

The channel TF1 (télévision française n°1) has the reputation of not giving news: they often treat irrelevant stories that have nothing to do in a news bulletin. Meanwhile, the BBC was covering the earthquake in China, the volcano eruption in Island and many other important and relevant stories. The worrying aspect of this problem is that this particular news bulletin is one of the most watched in France!

Before starting my journalism course I never noticed that problem, I considered the TF1 news bulletin as "standard". Now I realised this is not normal and I think that French people should get better news bulletins. This kind of problems contributes to the idea that French people are arrogant, as they only talk about themselves in news bulletins!

I'm really happy to realise that it was a much better choice to take a journalism course in the UK, as I'm getting more interested in TV news, I'm glad to know I'll have a chance to be doing this in the UK. If I was to work in France, I would be asked to interview French farmers to know how difficult it is to cope with the bad weather. Not really exciting, is it?