Monday, November 10, 2008

O Rly?

Media exacerbated house-price myths, says BBC's Robert Peston

The BBC business editor, Robert Peston, has admitted at an industry conference today that the media were to some extent "complicit in this canard" that house prices would continue to rise. Peston said that the media helped to create "a myth that somehow houses were a one-way bet and that debt never had to be repaid". "The BBC, newspapers and other broadcasters, in news and in features, were complicit in this canard that somehow house prices could only ever rise and that what you have to look at is the interest payments on your debt rather than the principle," Peston said.

Posted by little professor @ 10:15 PM (3871 views)
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17 thoughts on “O Rly?

  • planning4acrash says:

    Was engaged in PROPAGANDA! I really think there should be investigations into government intervention into the media, and, other methods of propaganda.

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  • LP, loving the headline and the owl pic!

    Of course the media are partly to blame, but then that’s what bubbles are all about – a frenzy which feeds on itself, encompassing all parts of society. I’m sure that in rhe 1637 tulip mania the newspapers and town criers were caught up in the euphoria too. Before the 1929 crash the media was full of tips on how to buy stocks on margin. It was ever thus.

    Housing is different though. The government should tightly regulate this kind of thing when people’s homes are at stake.

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  • Thanks for posting the o rly? image- it’s made my day. LOL.

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  • little professor says:

    If you have Sky+ or happen to be in during the daytime, I’d recommend watching “Homes Under The Hammer” on BBC1 daytime. The current series is a repeat from the end of 2006, when property was booming. It’s a fascinating insight into how caught up everyone was in the mantra that proberdee could only ever go up, innit. The number of clueless investors who overpaid at auction and botched the “redevelopment” and yet still managed to make a huge profit is unbelievable – it’s little wonder that constant showing of programmes like this lulled the population into thinking it was a sure-fire way to make free money.

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  • “Homes Under The Hammer” on BBC1

    In the interest of balance, the BBC should show a live-feed from the bankruptcy courts.

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  • Homes Under The Gavel?

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  • Interesting article LP. Was exposed to a few episodes of HUTH last week whilst on holiday with the family… My toungue still hurts. LOL

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  • The desire to find a scape-goat in very strong in us humans – the Credit Crunch and subsequent house price crash (or return to sanity) puts this desire very much on show. One week it is Kirsty (Queen of property porn) the next banks, then (Crash) Gordon. The fact is that many parties were complicit and benefited in the illusion of ever appreciating house prices. Yet still the desire to find the scape-goat in a single entity – to banish it and all the negativity (from some people’s perspective) it embodies persists. Even as dancing ipod silhouettes we are so primitive.

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  • O RLY? is such a geeky catchphrase, and I’m liking that its being used here.

    I think as a follow up to this “revelation”, Peston, or someone, should be asking what the incentive was for the media to overbake the idea that housing always goes up in value. Why would a media organisation latch onto that so readily as the BBC?

    The answer is almost certainly self interest.

    If the executive producer of an investment show bought shares in a company ahead of promoting the stock on that week’s programme, the FSA would investigate market manipulation. If the executive producer of Location location etc owns four buy to let properties, he’s untouchable!

    There’s your answer in a nutshell to why the media have taken up the property porn festa so readily.

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  • Well would you believe it eh?! As Basil Fawlty once said “your specialised subject is STATING THE BLEEDIN’ OBVIOUS”. Of course the media were complicit after all the majority of the media is owned by the wealthy and the influential and it should never be forgotten that these people made an absolute mint from this debacle, overseen lest we forget by a Labour government. Incidentally, if one thing typies politics over the last 20 years it’s just how impotent oppositions have been and the last few weeks has been an absolute disaster for the Conservatives. How on earth has Brown come out of all this better off? If ever you wanted evidence of ‘sheeple’……………………………

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  • Look at Noam Chomsky’s web site. You probably won’t but look at his article on the media.

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  • Tenyearstogetmymoneyback says:

    IMHO opinion there has been a balance by the broadcasters.
    If anything the BBC were so ahead of the curve they lost credibility.

    I sold my HBOS shares about three years ago the day after a documentary (Panorama?)
    in which a reporter asking for a ten times salary mortgage was told by the Halifax ”

    “I sorry we can’t help you ………. but …..

    if you ring our subsiduary Birmingham Midshires, and WHATEVER you do don’t tell them your salary I’m sure there will be no problem at all”

    In the years that followed both House Prices and the HBOS share price continued to rise but I now know I did the right thing.

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  • @Luctay
    I’m not sure scape-goating applies here. From what I understand, scapegoating is the transference of blame to an individual or group from those responsible to those who are in a poor position to defend themselves. I do see blame being apportioned to a variety of groups who 1. probably deserve it based on the evidence 2. are perfectly capable of defending themselves. 3. I’ve been visiting this site for the last couple of years and the complaints against certain people and groups in relation to propagating the boom have remained pretty much consistent. Wouldn’t scape-goating involve the apportioning of blame for our own faults after the event ? I don’t see blame being heaped on one individual or group here, well other than the NWO obviously.

    @Tenyears
    Perhaps the Panorama programme was balanced and the property porn imbalanced? Adding these two together doesn’t create balance. The BBC had serious problems with its reporting of the MMR scare, whereby it gave equal air time to both sides of the debate, despite the fact that one side of the debate was seriously flawed and held almost no credibility within the scientific community. Balanced reporting is tricky and requires judgement. Giving equal air time to something well-founded and something implausible doesn’t make balance.

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  • tyrellcorporation says:

    @ Paul – ‘I’m liking’
    @ Drewster – ‘loving the headline’

    Nasty ‘BBC style’ use of future continuous tense here (McDonalds scrote speak).

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  • tyrellcorporation says:

    …sorry but it’s a pet hate of mine.

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  • The true guilt of the media was their behaviour at the top. Do you remember even after the decline started, there were media reports in the Metro, to pick one, stating ludicrous increases. I think everybody is a VI personally, and they obviously used their position to offload at the peak.

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