Leader: 'Non-stories': a survey

August 24, 2007

The Times Higher has compiled a list of "non-stories" that the press is using to fill pages now that the floods have receded, clearing has failed to degenerate into chaos and Paris Hilton has been released. We have identified 401 stories across seven daily national newspapers that either bear no relation to fact or contain so little journalistic merit that reading beyond the headline constitutes a serious waste of time. Although we have absolutely no business telling other publications what they should and shouldn't print and even less telling readers what they should and shouldn't read, we nevertheless feel duty-bound to speak out because it's August. Of the 401 non stories, four stand out for special mention: "Official: A levels are crap"; "Mickey: I didn't need degree to be famous mouse"; "Freddie Starr ate my thesis"; and "Non-courses cost taxpayers lots".

If a free market means anything, it means making free with our opinions and telling young people, who of course cannot make a rational decision about their future, what they should and shouldn't spend their time and money on. We say: bring back National Service... and who let those secondary-modern types into universities anyway?

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