“The only thing you should believe in a newspaper is the date” I lost count of the amount of times my Nana told me this, probably because I wasn’t counting in the first place, Anyway it turns out my Nana was a very wise woman.
Just last summer I was working on the beautiful Greek island of Kos. Although If you had listened to the British media last year then you certainly wouldn’t agree with me.
Kos is beautiful, plenty to see and do, the weather is lovely and the people are among the nicest I have ever met, In fact the locals are that nice I couldn’t help but be suspicious of them, I couldn’t help it, I’m British when all said and done. Even now as I write this some 8 months later it still boils my piss as to how the media got away with some of the claims they made about Kos.
It was the middle of June when I first seen an article about the hundreds of refugees descending on this beautiful island. I had been living here for 3 weeks, the island is not very big, infact you can drive the full length of Kos in 40 minutes. How have I not seen a single refugee? They must be here somewhere, after all the newspaper had printed a photo of 20 or 30 refugees arriving on the beach in inflatable dinghies. What was going to happen? was we under attack? should I be scared? NO, these people were refugees they had escaped a war zone, conditions we could not begin to imagine, (Not even if you’re from Gorton) I reasoned with myself, these people are not here for trouble. Upon further investigation I confirmed my thoughts, these people weren’t here for trouble, In fact to be more accurate these people WEREN’T here at all. It turned out these photos were at least a year old and more importantly was not even photos of Kos, they were a different island altogether. Fancy that eh?
However the media didn’t let a silly thing like the TRUTH get in the way of their articles, they just kept churning them out.
” There is NO MONEY in the cash machines” ” There is NO FOOD in the shops”
These are just 2 of my favourite headlines/lies from June last year. Hand on heart in the entire 6 months I was on Kos, I queued for the cash point twice on both occasions only 1 person in front of. The only time the cash point refused to give me money was because I didn’t have it, nothing to do with the Greek financial crisis. As for No food in shops, that is just laughable. Its safe to say, if the media had their way they’d let you believe there was people fighting in the street over a joint of meat, quite literally bringing a whole knew meaning to the phrase ” You got beef”.
This was in June, it wasn’t until Mid August that I seen my first refugee and it was at this time that there was a dramatic increase in the number of refugees arriving. For my own amusement I created an image in my head, I imagined these hundreds of refugees in Syria, in June, reading the UK Tabloids saying “Apparently everyone else is going to Kos, we should probably go there”
Whilst the media articles became more closer to the truth in the height of summer, I assure you, they were still massively exaggerated. The papers would have you believe there was thousands upon thousands of refugees, all causing trouble on the island, with full scale riots, mugging holiday makers and ruining peoples holiday. Truth is these people were much nicer than the majority of strangers we all encounter on a daily basis, think about it for a second, these people had fled a war zone, most with families, after losing EVERYTHING. They wasn’t here for trouble, infact the opposite, they were grateful they were somewhere safe. I remember after one night out, it reached 3am and I had clearly had far too much to drink so I made my way home. I had to walk passed the temporary refugee camp to get back to my apartment, I did so without a second thought, I was very drunk, infact I was a muggers dream that night. I’m not suggesting the fact that someone didn’t mug me when they could of, necessarily makes them a good person, but what I’m trying to say is, I felt safe. I would walk anywhere at anytime in any circumstances on that Island. There are places in Manchester I wouldn’t go after 10pm.
I had every intention of briefly covering the media assassination of Kos and moving on to a few other examples of us being manipulated by the media. I am now going to have to save them for another post. I apologise, once I started on this topic I just had to go into more detail as it just infuriates me. I’m angry for the residents of Kos and the beating they took in OUR media, I’m angry that the media can get away with manipulating us, failing to cover certain incidents and blatantly lying to us. Most of all I am angry for all the hardworking people who cancelled their holiday to Kos last year, because of the lies the media fed you.
I know FIRST hand what the situation was like on that island last year, I haven’t heard these stories from a friend of a friend. This is from me with my own 2 eyes.
So, to all the UK lazy journalists that covered Kos in 2015, I am looking you dead in the eye and telling you, YOU ARE ALL FULL OF UTTER SHITE!!!!!! I’m just not sure why?
Maybe, just Maybe the “People” who control the media wanted to boost our own countries tourism economy. Thats fair enough, to a certain extent I can understand that. Now this is just a suggestion, but how about this summer, instead of infecting us with your usual lies by no doubt attacking another beautiful tourist destination. Instead why don’t you write a lovely article about why the great British Public should spend their hard earned money and choose to holiday in the UK.
I hope there is a newspaper out there somewhere who will print an article and “sell” our British seaside to us. In reality they will more than likely stick a few 19 year old models in bikinis and drape them across Blackpool beach seductively licking an Ice cream with some innuendo based headline and the temperature marked on a thermometer.