Posted by: Ciaran | May 9, 2010

Playing the waiting game

The public. The media. The politicians.

The major common ground for these three groups over the last three days has been the tentative rumblings about who might do what with whom but where and on whose terms.

It’s somewhere between a school disco and a game of Cluedo, with everyone trying to stay one step ahead and an endless stream of tittle-tattle in the background.

While it is definitely not an easy time to be a senior member of one of Britain’s three main political parties, it isn’t an easy time to be a journalist either.

Conjecture and speculation are flying around, and the determination to be the most up to date with the news means pushing deadlines to the wire.

I spoke to a journalist at a large regional paper earlier today, and he told me he was anticipating some “late night political drama” this evening, meaning re-write after re-write to get the copy as accurate as possible for when it hits the newsstand in the morning.

“Just waiting for white smoke at the Cabinet office…” he told me. And that’s what the media – particularly the rolling news channels – has been forced to do for the last few days: staying with the major story for fear of missing out on any breaking news but in the process sidelining any actual breaking news, as articulated very well in this blog by Siriol Haf Griffiths.

Tick, tock – we’re all waiting, but for how long?


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