In the days of 24 hour news channels, 100 page newspapers and instantly-updated online news sites, a day without news is almost unimaginable.
On 18 April 1930, rather than the customary announcements, an announcer simply read “Good evening. Today is Good Friday. There is no news.”
The announcement was partly reflective of the self-obsessed nature of Britain at the time – you can bet that plenty of things happened around the world, even if none of them affected British interests enough to arouse the attention of the BBC that day – but also shows how different today’s news cycle is.
The biggest observation is that today, a day without news simply wouldn’t be allowed to happen. Editors have pages to fill, and silent presenters don’t make for great radio – as a result, even if a day were to go by without anything of note happening (almost inconceivable, but bear with me), the vacuum would be filled. A good example of this would be a newspaper creating moral panic against a particularly sweary late-night talk show, or an exclusive squirreled away by a forward-thinking news editor to be wheeled out on a rainy day such as this.
For better or worse though, no day passes without something of note happening, even if it is easy to ignore tragedies on an epic scale – see Bono’s 2006 collaboration with the Independent for a stark reminder.
So while we might laugh at the idea that a day could go by without anything of note happening, it’s worth reflecting on how subjective ‘news’ really is. Incidentally, if, like me, you’re wondering what such a day would look like, here’s an idea.Read More