Magic televisions, cyclists at the wheel
It’s almost a year since I’ve become a father, something that has improved my life in almost every conceivable way. One thing I’m noticing though is that it means that I am now defenceless against that attack of various colds and bugs. This week it was the turn of influenza, meaning I was in bed for much of the week.
Yes, I did try to calm the fever mainly by imbibing herbal teas. And yes, Deutsche Welle’s Rachel Stewart has done a funny video on how Germans respond to getting sick.
Nonetheless, I had time to look at a proposal that has been described as ‘the media bombshell of the year’. It is not every day that the head of a public broadcaster with a €7 billion budget suggests that perhaps that broadcaster shouldn’t continue to exist in its current form. But that’s exactly what ARD boss Tom Buhlow did when admitting last week that the German public were falling out of love with their state television channels.
The ARD’s reputation has certainly taken a battering in recent months. First, there was the case of Buhlow’s predeccesor, who lavished public money on massage chairs for her office. Then there were the editorial slip ups, including the case of the Zimbabwean ‘inventor’ whose a ingeneous television could reportedly cure the world’s energy needs.
I also wrote about the ‘avowed cyclist’ who has become a board member at Volkswagen. Even Julia Hamburg would probably admit that the she’s not that bothered by the successes of Germany’s biggest car company. After all, the Green politician campaigned during the recent state election in Lower Saxony to make it a ‘bike state’. But, as Lower Saxony’s new deputy leader, she also has the right to a seat on the board of a company which belongs to a fifth to its home state. Can someone who’d rather see cyclists than cars on the road really serve the interests of VW shareholders? That’s a question that Germany’s law courts are likely to have to answer soon…
Enjoy your weekend,
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