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Issue 38 - Hold the front page...

Whisky Magazine Issue 38
April 2004


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Hold the front page...

In tabloid speak we need to strike while the iron's hot and make hay while the sun shines. Dominic Roskrow looks at how whisky is enjoying life as a media darling

Once upon a time a journalist on a regional afternoon newspaper would start his or her day by arriving at the office at dawn and calling the emergency services for a list of road accidents, fires and crimes. That list would form the basis of the news for the day's paper.

Those days have long gone. Satellite television and the abundance of news programmes have meant that such coverage is hopelessly
out of date by the time a paper hits the streets.

‘Ambulance chasing' has been replaced by a steady stream of consumer-focused or celebrity gossip stories, preferably ones that are the showbiz equivalent of a road traffic accident. So if a politician argues that suicide bombers have a point, or there's a whiff of an organisation ripping off Joe Public, the daily newspaper journalist goes to work with alacrity.

Such a passion for trivia used to be confined to the ‘silly season' – the times of the year when there was a shortage of stories berating
governments for lying about world events to justify wars. Now it's common currency at any time – 24 seven, to use current parlance.

All of which goes a long way to explaining why the Cardhu story became such a big issue outside the world of whisky.

I don't want to go back there again – if I never hear the ‘C' word again it will still be too soon – but the fallout from that dispute has been to raise awareness of whisky, and particularly single malt whisky, to new and previously unscaled levels.

Barely a week goes by these ...

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