CNN scaremongering

By | Category: Travel rumblings

This Sunday, scrolling along the bottom of CNN is the headline, “Spain tries to save its tourist industry.” Does this mean that tens of millions of visitors have stopped going there? Have hotels fallen into the seas? Have the beautiful sandy beaches suddenly turned to concrete?
No, none of this has happened but this type of irresponsible headline is designed only to get viewers to watch interminable rolling items that come around with astonishing regularity in the chance that this story comes up. I waited for twenty minutes and saw no story but I’m be prepared to bet that the tourist industry is still alive and kicking.
I have already suggested that the idea behind this daft headlines is to encourage viewing length but it does no favours to Spain or to journalism. In the first hand the Spanish tourism industry has worked hard to maintain numbers and nearly all but a handful of countries would be envious of the number of people that have visited Spain this year. In the second place CNN is perpetrating at best a dubious understanding of the facts and at the worst, a downright lie. For those readers who also view Irena Bodnarec’s Benidorm all Year Round blog, they know that there, whilst there have been toughish times, Britons are still visiting and numbers are rebounding.
As I write this I am in Tunis where my hotel offers me only BBC World, (which has no similar story but that’s not to suggest they may not run misleading headlines) Bloomberg and CNN. I don’t speak Arabic and the French language channels carry no story like it from what I can make out. So is this a CNN exclusive? In fact or misleading content? The fact that I have waited those 20 minutes confirms to me that this isn’t a big story or it would be blasted from the rooftops.
One again it comes down to a significant media outlet sensationalising its content. Spanish tourism is in no worse or better position than it was yesterday or the day before. Holidaymakers shouldn’t be put off from going there but I’d be prepared to bet that some will pause and maybe think of another place instead. It seems more than unfair that some airlines, hoteliers, tour operators, restauranters and attractions will feel the heat for a day or two from anybody who happened to watch CNN today. Luckily we visitors have short memories and this will be forgotten quickly.
Fair comment and reporting is justified, twaddle never is.

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