When the Press failed at the election

As expected, Labour’s local election collapse over much of Wales (eg, Flintshire, Wrexham, Carmarthen, Merthyr, Blaenau Gwent, Torfaen and Newport) was a five-second wonder in a couple of English morning papers, and all-but unmentioned in the rest.

“National” for our London newspapers presumably equals “English”.

But we’ve got problems in Wales, too. So little of depth (apart from the more-unavoidable sensations) is inclined to appear about Welsh politics in even our two mornings that it’s good to report that the long-established bi-monthly Planet is taking a bit more notice of Welsh politics – and managing to avoid using material which appears hoary with age.

But the thoughtful material in Planet, Cambria and the monthly Barn is no substitute for daily coverage, or for Y Byd.

How long ago was it that our dailies printed (in small type, admittedly) all the nominations, and then the result for every ward ?

All gone. To save money, presumably. But also because of orders from Trinity Mirror in London ?

Those ward results produced the detail to work out in detail which party was growing or declining. Now, we rely on minimal info from returning officers. Or for the “unbiased” information from party PROs.

It’s all on the web, you way. When I mentioned this facility to one of our top journalists while we were sitting on a bus from the Bay, he just looked me in the eye. The amount of drudge involved ensured that he was not going to use the web to prepare those tables of stats. And neither am I, for the same reason.

Perhaps it is no wonder that circulations are falling. Those sales figures were made up of large numbers of different groups of the “anoraks” who London nowadays seem to despise.

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