Thursday, August 4, 2011

Refugee swap on YouTube: Crap policy, crap programming

Asylum seekers held in detention.
Image source:
Two things guaranteed to leave me angry and disappointed: our Government's refugee policy and reality TV. Actually, I fib. Reality TV rarely upsets me anymore because I don't watch it.
And now the two are going to be combined, with the Federal Government planning to film the transportation of asylum seekers to Malaysia and place it on YouTube (not exactly TV, but you get what I mean). You can read about it here.
I may be missing something with this story, but I don't see how the move is going to be a win-win for the Government.
The aim, supposedly, is to deter people smugglers and potential asylum seekers from coming to Australia in boats. Now, to work as a deterrent, the footage is going to have to make for unpleasant viewing. Which shouldn't be hard, should it.
Yet promoting itself as a government that treats people in such a way is hardly going to do it any favours in other circles. As far as I can tell, anyway. But I'm no expert on politics, so maybe I am, in fact, missing something.
As much as I wish this wasn't happening (the shipping people to Malaysia part, that is. I welcome the part of deal in which we accept 4000 refugees), I hope commercial TV producers don't pay it too much mind. Otherwise we may be in line for more god-awful shows.
Instead of one called The Hills, we'd have The Cells. Or, rather than My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding, there'd be My Big Fat Shafting by Australia.
No. Please no.

What are your thoughts on the issue? And can you stand to watch reality TV?

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