Notes from a small island
A weblog by Jonathan Ali

Thursday, April 03, 2003  

Yesterday a group of 50 or so people marched through Port of Spain, protesting the lack of local music and television programming on local media, and demanding 50% local content on the radio and TV stations, as the Express reports.

I'd really love to be more sympathetic to their plight. I'd love to see local art - literature, music, TV shows, theatre, what have you - gain more prominence, be embraced by more people. We need for it to happen.

But when so much of what's on offer is piss poor, I can't in good conscience support this sort of affirmative action. As I've said before, it's not the what of your art as much as the how. I don't care if it's "local"; if it's crap - and goodness knows we're neck deep in the stuff - then it deserves the boot, not to be coddled and encouraged.

As BC Pires wrote in the Guardian some weeks ago, the war against mediocrity is one of the greatest battles facing us culturally. Before we think of waging war on the airwaves, let's win that battle first.

posted by Jonathan | 3:14 PM 0 comments


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