We don’t need a Fox News-style TV station in the UK

I would normally be all for an increase in coverage of the news – but the aim should be to widen the debate, not shut down one side, writes Chris Stevenson

Monday 31 August 2020 00:04
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The UK may get a Fox News-style opinionated TV station
The UK may get a Fox News-style opinionated TV station

There were reports this weekend that there are attempts to try and create a Fox News-style opinionated TV station in the UK – and all I can say is that I hope it doesn’t turn out the way I think it might.

I would normally be all for an increase in coverage of the news, and I’m well aware that opinion is the stock-in-trade of the Voices desk. One of my favourite things about the job is finding a range of views and offering them up to our readership, whether that be columnists, one-off writers – or indeed our own readers who offer up their opinions for the letters page. But, TV opinion, like the output of Fox News, is a different beast.

Having been out in New York and helping to craft The Independent’s coverage there during the first couple of years of Donald Trump’s presidency, I saw many a debate – whether that be on Fox, CNN or MSNBC – drift into shouting matches as contributors tried to get their views heard over each other. Passion is all well and good, but the viewer has to actually be able to take something away from the debate to think about.

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