Regional Business News
regarding the 2010 Olympics
in British Columbia, Canada
OlyBLOG is for businesses across Canada,
especially in Vancouver / Whistler and throughout B.C. We also
hope companies in Alberta and United States (i.e. Washington, Oregon,
Idaho, Montana and California) will find OlyBLOG interesting and informative.
to purchase the book
Juxtaposition and Necessary
Can you see the real Olympic story
Look carefully below the fold.
That's it. Right down there in small letters at the bottom of the page.
The area no one sees unless they buy the newspaper.
"Vanoc (sic) forgot to sign the first contract
Yikes!! Is this true? VANOC forgot to sign the very first contract
they awarded, and by not signing it they put our community at insurance
risk, plus it cost taxpayers money?
Wow. Considering that the story about the hockey players was almost a
week old, and that the story about the tardy contract signing was fresh,
wouldn't you think that it should be at the top of the page? Especially
considering that it had a negative impact on our community?
How could the Vancouver Sun make such a mistake?
Was it an oversight. Poor management? Juxtaposition?
An effort to shield VANOC?
It's the old, "I have good news and I have bad news, and I choose
to overwhelm you first with the good news in an effort to take the sting
out, and make you gloss over the bad news" trick. Except in this
case, the good news isn't really good news to a responsible reader, but
it is good enough to fool the gullible and naive, and in the newspaper
business, the lowest common denominator is the target market.
It's one of the reasons we've lost trust in newspapers, and for the life
of me, I can't understand why colleagues at other newspapers that operate
relatively ethically watch it happen and do nothing about it. Even if
they are guilty of committing the same sin, which most
are, wouldn't it prudent to be the first to step up and say, OK, from
here on in things will be different and we will no longer put up with
our competitors besmirching news professional's reputations, and neither
will we continue to do so. It's a new day.
The Vancouver Sun knew they had no choice but to place the bad news on
the front page, and in a creative artful manner they came up with this
plan to sneak it by us. Apparently it worked because I think I was the
only one at the time to make an issue of it and give it the weight it
First impressions count, and if VANOC can't get the first contract right,
it sends a strong signal to be very wary regarding events coming down
Vancouverites are really nice people, and they are respectable, easygoing
laid back citizens. In a million years they would not think that they
are being manipulated. They live by the "do unto others" credo,
and would never believe that a news company charged with delivering truthful
reporting could possibly do this purposely. To most, it must seem like
a mistake. I love Vancouverites. We give everyone (except Torontonians
of course) the benefit of the doubt.
What if I told you that I have another example of a very similar mistake?
How would you feel then?
Not only do I have another example, but the same news reporter is involved
(Jeff Lee), and not only is he involved in this second example of creative
juxtaposition, I caught him at another time giving VANOC way too much
leeway at the expense of our community.
What would you think about this front page now?
I'm not going to go through this whole pictures of newspaper pages
examples I use here, but I've been reporting about this phenomenon for
quite some time, and if you're interested in seeing how "juxtaposition"
and "necessary illusion" work symbiotically, click any of the
links below to get a feel for how news information is manipulated. Necessary
illusion is a term coined by Noam Chomsky, and it refers to the art of
juxtaposing news to make it look like you support one perspective, but
you really have an opposing agenda. The dynamic can occur relative to
a series of stories, or within one article.
Before anyone goes off halfcocked and puts all the blame on the reporter,
keep in mind that a variety of people at news companies influence how
the community receives and interprets information. Editors as well as
the owners of news companies heavily influence the news. They work as
a team, and for the most part they operate within the law, but without
doubt, too often their actions are unethical. I'm not so naive as to think
my little blog or book will change the way news companies do business.
OK, I'm being self effacing, and I know that my little blog and
book have mainstream news media thinking twice, and that I've made a big
difference, but more importantly, I want you to clearly appreciate that
what you see and hear from local news media is not always presented to
you in a manner that is unbiased. Occasionally, there is a hidden agenda,
and it is up to you to spot when you are being played.
The Olympics is one of those times.
Other examples of artful juxtaposition and
necessary illusion ...
VANOC Offices - Taxpayers
a Professional Researcher's Credibility
Mainstream Media -
Trouble in Lotus Land
Media Stacking the Deck
Sun Fuels Smokescreen
Protesters VS. Paper
I have another absolutely killer example,
but I'm going to save it for a rainy day . . .
Have a comment?
Interested in booking
a speaking engagement?
Want to learn more about the challenges
that small and midsize businesses face? Click Leverage
If you have to pay for it?
Shouldn't you benefit too?
Interested in booking a speaking engagement?