CASE STUDY - CLIMATE CHANGE

The Daily Telegraph is currently the most popular British broadsheet. It is owned by the Barclay Brothers who are personally close to the leadsers of the Conservative party (the mainstream right-wing party in the UK) and is commonly regarded as being the most right-wing of the broadsheets. It recently ran a story inspired by two different conferences on climate change, in Copenhagen and . You can read it here.

A few points:
This is an op-ed piece. WHat does this mean and why does it matter?
Is the story biased? If so, how is this bias communicated?
Who is the audience for this story? What gratification would they receive from it?



The Guardian is also a British broadsheet. It is the third most popular of the broadsheets and has a circulation of less than half of that enjoyed by The Telegraph. It is owned by the Guardian Media Group. Its report on the New York conference is here.

Questions to think about:

Again, it's an op-ed. What is the purpose of these features?
Can you identify the political slant of The Guardian? How?

Climate change is becoming a heavily politicised issue. To put it crudely, fighting climate change often involves spending public money and raising taxes; this tends to be something to which right-wing parties are extremely opposed. They claim that the science supporting climate change theories is flawed and that the whole thing is a scam designed to allow governments to raise taxes and thus give themselves more money to control and, as a result, more power. Please note, not ALL right-wing parties or people believe this, and several left-wingers DO believe it! However, what opposition there is to the notion of man-made climate change tends to come from the right wing.

So: what are these papers using their op-ed pieces for? Is this what you expect from broadsheets?

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