August is often referred to as silly season in terms of media coverage and reporting but seriously some of the stories that have been appearing in this weeks newspapers are definitely more fantasy than fiction smacking of something you might expect to appear in the ‘Daily Prophet’ rather than the ‘Daily Mail’. Yesterday for example the Mail’s science editor dedicated a full page to; ‘How to survive a zombie attack’. Unbelievably a group of scientists have actually dedicated both time and money to researching how we would cope with a ‘plague of the undead’ and what implications this would have on our national health service. Even more unbelievably the Mail has taken a whole page to reach the conclusion given by a Department of Health spokesman that; ‘In the absence of substantive evidence on the existence of zombies, our resources are focused on the health and wellbeing of the nation, not the living dead’.
Other equally newsworthy stories that have caught my eye this week are; ‘Vegetrouble’, a half page story in today’s Mirror about a prize winning onion grower who’s been banned from local shows, ‘Where’s that footpath’ nearly a full page in the Express about the growth of elephant grass in Somerset and ‘Knife crime’ an entertaining and enlightening feature in Delicious magazine about how kitchen knife sales are currently outnumbering sales of kitchen forks by 2:1. PR’s are frequently accused of dulling down real news but with some of the stories that have been given prominent and substantial coverage in this week’s press I would argue that maybe some journalists need all the help they can get.