melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)
melannen ([personal profile] melannen) wrote2010-06-15 10:41 am

More Fake News In Heaven And Earth


Does anybody know of a way to download The Bugle podcast without installing iTunes? I refuse to install iTunes *just* so I can get the Bugle - partly because I don't really have the system resources for it, partly because I viscerally hate the thing, partly because the iTunes store needs to *not* crash my browser every time I go there, thanks. But the Times website has finally put it under pay-only lock (and now it turns out that the Times was several episodes behind what itunes has anyway.)

I recently acquired an ipod and was forced to install itunes just long enough to flip the bit that lets you use your ipod as an external drive (though it still doesn't work right) and I really, really don't want to have to put it back on. :/ Dear Apple: if I can buy an $8 mp3 player that has all the capability and more of my iPod shuffle and can, oh, use software that doesn't try to malignantly take over my computer, surely you can design one that does the same for eight times the price.

I suppose I can just wait for the new season of the Now Show to start for my Andy Zaltzman fix, because oh look, BBC Radio Four streams internationally! -- but I can't wait until after the World Cup for my next Andy Zaltzman fix!1!! D:

Why yes, whinging about the evil of Apple does count as working on my copyright primer for con-txt, shut up.

Anyway. Since I'm asking for help about the Bugle already, I shall just make the post I've been playing with for a few weeks now, about Fake News (and "Real" News and Politics) fandom around the world and around the web.

The goal here is to get a guide to 'canon' sources and fandom sites for that somewhat-expanded RPF fandom that is, really, one of my most abiding loves. (My earliest datable memory involves Reagan giving a campaign speech. I would have been two.) I'm reasonably competent on the American ones (though my attention there is ... sporadic, and I might have missed something) and on the British ones (though, not being British, I've probably missed something.) I have a vague idea of where to start for Australia and Canada. I've no clue whatsover beyond that, and if there's anyone on my reading list who does know of other awesome fake news sources - English language or not - I would *love* the contribution!

This is meant to be video, audio, and text sources that I think everyone into current events from a fandom perspective ought to be at least minimally familiar with. (either because they're fundamental to the current fandom community, or because they're so awesome everybody should know about them.)

Here's what I've got so far. What have I missed? What should I cut?


The Bugle - weekly radio comedy current events show, hosted by John Oliver (in New York) and Andy Zaltzman (in London) and for a short time produced in Australia. Was free through Times Online, also available free through iTunes.

BBC World News - nightly 'real' TV news broadcast. Widely available in broadcast in the US, clutched as a lifeline as a source of TV news that *isn't* jingoistically US-centric. (occasionally jingoistically UK-centric, but even that's a breath of fresh air in the US.)

That Was The Week That Was (emeritus) - weekly comedy current events TV show that ran in several countries in the 1960s and inspired similar shows in several other countries. (I am sad to say that I didn't even know it had started out in the UK until I looked it up on Wikipedia recently.) Best known in the US as the source of all Tom Lehrer's best work.


The Daily Show - Fake News TV show, hosted by Jon Stewart with a revolving crew of correspondents who are some of the best young comedy talent in the US. Notables past and present include Lewis Black, John Oliver, Sam Bee, John Hodgman, Aasif Mandhvi, Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert. Center of US Fake News fandom.

The Colbert Report - Fake News TV show, parody of conservative 'news' shows, hosted by "Stephen" Colbert in character as a shouty, perspectiveless right-winger. Co-center of US Fake News fandom. Jon and Stephen flirt a lot. Stephen also has a UK-style soulbonded comedy parter in Paul Dinello, with Amy Sedaris as the girl sidekick.

Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me! - Radio comedy news quiz/panel show (It was "inspired by" The News Quiz much like HIGNFY was.) Hosted by Peter Sagal, Carl Kasell of the coveted voice, and produced by Doug "the subway fugitive, not a slave to fashion, bongo boy" Berman. Has one fic on yuletide but needs a larger fandom.

Whad'ya Know? - Radio comedy quiz show with significant current events content. Michael Feldman is frequently annoying, but much slashier with Jim Packard than Carl is with Peter.

Countdown with Keith Olbermann - "Real" nightly news show on MSNBC. American TV's only true bastion of angry liberalism. Frequently critiques other American news and occasionally fails to take itself seriously.

The Rachel Maddow Show - "Real" nightly news show on MSNBC. American TV's only bastion of true reasonable liberalism. Much hated by conservatives due to the fact that it's impossible to hate Rachel Maddow. Frequently fails to take itself seriously. Keith and Rachel flirt a lot.

Morning Edition and Weekend Edition - Daily radio news show, your basic source of slightly more in-depth, vaguely non-partisan old-fashioned news reporting.

All Things Considered - Daily radio current events show, your basic source of very in-depth and always interesting current events and politics reporting. Also relevant: This American Life, hosted by Amy Sedaris' brother and listened to by David Mitchell. :P

Washington Week - Long-running weekly non-comedy politics TV panel show. Currently hosted by Gwen Ifill. Also: The MacLaughlin Group, weekly non-comedy politics panel show with regular panelists, most of whom are annoying.

The Sunday Morning Talk Shows - Weekly Panel/Interview current events TV interview/panel shows. Includes Meet the Press and Face the Nation, two of the longest-running shows in television. Take themselves far too seriously. Rebroadcast commercial-free on C-SPAN radio.

C-SPAN - live, minimal-commentary political and current events coverage; includes live coverage of Congress and Presidential speeches and press events; also shows lots of archival material, choice bits of BBC Parliament and CPAC, Book TV on weekends, and a daily morning call-in show. 3 cable channels and a radio station, all streamed free online.

The Onion - Satirical newspaper, now mostly online. Tends to lean more toward the "fake" than the "news" end of things.

The Capitol Steps - America's premier full-time professional political filk troupe. Tends to do stuff that's so topical it doesn't hold up a year later. Lots of live performances.

Doonesbury - Long-running, current events-based daily comic strip. Includes both a recurring cast of politically interested/interesting characters and appearances by RL political figures. Has a history of handling sensitive issues reasonably well without losing sight of the comedy, even when it's really dark comedy.

The West Wing (emeritus) - long-running TV drama about a fictional US president and his staff. TWW fandom has large overlap with current events fandoms.

The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour - (emeritus) Along with That Was the Week That Was, TV topical satire for my mother's generation. Which means I listened to her LPs of it on repeat in childhood. Not as well known now as Tom Lehrer, which is a shame.

Wall Street Week with Louis Rukeyser - (emeritus) Weekly financial news TV show which consistently failed to take itself seriously and opened with a comedy monologue. Yes, a comedy monologue on the stock market. Louis Rukeyser was, um, one of my first TV crushes.

Molly Ivins - (emeritus) Wrote the country's best humorous politics columns until she left us right at the height of the Bush era, when we needed her most.

Short Introduction to National American Press: New York Times - paper of 'record'. Washington Post - Capitol Hill paper of 'record'. USA Today - generally mocked for shallowness. Wall Street Journal - finance-focussed, economically right-leaning but not batshit socially right-leaning. Christian Science Monitor - despite its name, known for objective, clear-eyed liberal-leaning reporting. Currently failing financially. Mother Jones - liberal-progressive biweekly current events magazine. Slate - online current events and culture magazine. No national far-right papers; far-right people don't read the papers.

OMG NO GET IT AWAY GET IT AWAY: Anything on Fox News. Anything involving the phrase "conservative talk radio". Sarah Palin.

Where the fandom is: tds_rps, fakenewsfanfic, punditslash, maddow_kicks, rahmbamarama, ontd_political, j2sul (on lj), punditfic, maddow_kicks, fakenews_srsbsness (on DW), political_wank, unfunnybusiness (on jf)

The UK

Have I Got News For You: weekly long-running comedy current events panel TV show. Features Paul Merton, Ian Hislop, and three others, usually two comedians and one newsmaker or politician. The centre of UK fake news.

Charlie Brooker's Newswipe: Comedic show that discusses, critiques, and looks behind the scenes at TV news coverage. Hosted by Charlie Brooker, contains post-watershed content. Hopefully will be renewed for more series.

The Bubble: Comedy current events TV panel show in which celebrity panelists are isolated from news for a week and then quizzed as to whether stories are real news or fake news. Hosted by David Mitchell. Unique among all the panel shows I know of for consistently having something resembling gender balance and Bechdel passes. Hopefully will be renewed for more series.

Mock the Week: Weekly topical comedy panel show, hosted by Dara O'Briain. Lots and lots of comedians involved with a wide range of 'game' formats.

The News Quiz: Long-running current events comedy radio panel show. Have not actually listened to any of this, something I should fix soonest.

The Now Show: Fake News radio show, hosted by Hugh Dennis and Steve Punt. Andy Zaltzman is a regular guest and there are also frequent musical segments. Did the Vote Now Show special series for the election, which I have torrented and was amazing.

The Big Fat Quiz Of The Year: annual comedy current events panel show on Channel Four. Usually features several people from the above. Very long and worth a watch. Channel Four also does live comedy election coverage with the usual suspects.

Private Eye: Current events satire magazine, edited by Ian Hislop. Gets sued for libel a lot. Source of most of the injokes in British public affairs.

The Thick of It: currently-running sitcom about the workings of the British government. I know very little about this, except that I spent several weeks thinking it was actually about organized crime.

Question Time: Non-comedy weekly political panel/talk TV show, featuring actual politicians and newsmakers.

This Week: Current events TV talk show featuring Andrew Neil, Diane Abbott, and Michael Portillo. Generally fails to take anything seriously. More people need to ship Abbot/Portillo, srsly, folks!

Newsnight: Daily non-comedy current affairs/interview show. Hosted by Jeremy Paxman.

BBC Parliament: Broadcasts live, commentary-free coverage of Parliament and other government affairs. Available internationally through Democracy Live. Premier event is weekly Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons. (PS: The Chambers of Parliament are much, much more porn-conducive than anything on CSPAN. All that leather! People crammed together knee to shoulder!)

Spitting Image: (Emeritus) Fake news show starring puppet versions of newsmakers; Ian Hislop wrote for it for awhile. I swear this was shown on US Public Broadcasting when I was a child, as I still have nightmares about it.

Yes [Prime] Minister: (Emeritus) Sitcom set in a British cabinet office. Legendary show & deeply funny. Still sometimes airs in reruns on US PBS stations.

Saturday Night Armistice: (Emeritus) Fake news sketch show starring Armando Iannucci. Occasionally got very surreal.

Short Intro To National UK Newspapers: The London Times - paper of record, conservative leaning; The Guardian (aka the Grauniad) - left-leaning; the Telegraph (aka the Torygraph) - very right-leaning, supposedly read mostly by old fuddy-duddies; the Financial Times - right-leaning, finance focused; the Daily Mail (aka the Daily Fail) - extreme right-wing, given to scare-mongering and basically a tabloid.

OMG NO GET IT AWAY GET IT AWAY: Sky News; the Daily Fail; Piers Morgan; anything which gives any credence the BNP or UKIP; Margaret Thatcher.

Where the fandom's at: brookerfic, slashtheweek, glovelove, uk_lolitics & associated communities, clameron, That Other Community (on lj); lolitics @ wikispaces.


This Hour Has 22 Minutes: Weekly Fake News TV show. Based on a show that was based on That Was The Week That Was. I admit I know it best for occasional encounters with the "Talking to Americans" segment (not as good as the Bugle's American, BTW.)

Air Farce Live: (Emeritus) Long-running topical sketch comedy show which I have only encountered in bits.

CPAC: Not the evil American organization, this is Canada's live political coverage, with proceeding of the House of Commons and so on.

I swear there is a C6D fandom that's about politics or local politics or something? Anybody know what I'm talking about?


Good News Week: HIGNFY-like comedy current events panel TV show. Only know about it because of AFP-fail involving it.

What else should be on those lists? Help. Especially from people not living in the US.

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