Flat bias

So I’m largely moved into my new flat, and in the process am having (as usual when I move) great fun with poor television reception. When I moved to Cirencester, I could only reliably receive BBC 2; when I moved to the last house in Cambridge, Channel 5 showed strong but BBC 1 was dodgy. And so forth.

In my new flat I can get BBC 1.

Nothing else; that’s it. And it’s not very good reception. Actually, it’s not quite that straightforward – on Thursday evening I got pretty good BBC 2 and Channel 5, poor ITV and C4, and almost non-existent BBC 1. Since I’m supposed to get good coverage for FreeView, and Channel 5 always used to be the yardstick for FreeView capability, I went out and bought a tiny and ugly black box, at which point everything turned around so I could get BBC 1 through normal broadcast, and the FreeView box was able to detect everything else, but solidly refuses to show anything except Sky News.

My flat is clearly trying to introduce an unwanted bias into my news consumption.

I don’t really have anything against Sky News (except for grammar, spelling, clarity, research and use of the English language); bias is a part of life, and should be embraced on all sides. I was planning to do this with, say, BBC News 24 plus some healthy website reading: a bit of Al Jazeera, some CNN, Press Association video feeds, that sort of thing. Except I can’t receive BBC News 24 (FreeView is trying to pick it up from Alexandra Palace, which I always associate with a computer game in the late 80s for some reason), and I don’t have an internet connection yet.

It’s a little difficult to be embraced on all sides by bias when you only have Sky News.

The cynic in me wants to claim this makes me feel like an American. The realist accepts that I can’t get good enough steak for that.

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