Opinion Matrix: Reality TV and licence fee fears





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Published on Feb 17, 2020

Concerns over reality TV following the death of former Love Island presenter Caroline Flack and fears over local broadcasting if the BBC licence fee was to be scrapped were among the subjects filling the comment and opinion pages in yesterday's papers.

The Daily Telegraph

In Tim Stanley's column he says reality TV recklessly blurs public and private.

He said: "Caroline Flack, the former host of Love Island, has taken her own life at the age of 40. I'm sensitive about the age because it is not far off my own, and there seems so much to live for, especially when you are as beautiful and loved as Caroline was. Her boyfriend has said: "My heart is broken.""

He added the problem with reality television is that it has blurred to the point of erasure the necessary line between public and private.

He goes on to say: "In most careers, you do the job, you go home, the job stops. In reality television, the job is being you. You go home and you are still you, so the job goes on and on. There is nowhere to hide. You are trapped in a cycle of publicity. You do well, you become famous. You make a mistake, people talk about it. You get depressed and stop going out, people talk about that too. Television and social media have taken the place of God as the all-seeing eye, except that God balances judgment with mercy, whereas humans tend just to judge."

The Scotsman

Its editorial says that Caroline Flack's death should give many cause for reflection and spark some real change.

The paper said: "Actions have consequences. The old adage about sticks and stones is simply not fit for purpose in today's 24/7 social media-driven world.

"Words to hurt. And every retweet compounds the pain.

"While it is impossible to know what ultimately led to TV presenter


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