Newspeak – My thoughts

This poetic piece of narrative film follows the reflection and journey of Ken Fero and his thoughts on the censorship of media in the United Kingdom through power structures such as Ofcom. The film uses and experiments with extreme images from events such as showing deaths in police custody, occupy London, the invasion of Iraq and uprisings of workers in the UK.

I particularly liked the style of poetic narrative over these images as it is a style I’ve not seen done before. However, as for the content, many valid and concerning points were brought up and well presented but there were some points I could only agree with to an extent. The main concern of the film which is the censorship of images in the UK is a concern more people in the country should have. Censoring is fabrication and fabrication is lying. Allowing censorship on any of the platforms we consume media today is allowing the media to lie to us. This then leads to another point of who controls this censorship? Who controls what we are allowed to see and what we are not allowed to see? Before it used to be the government. A notable event would be the government’s temporary prevention of At The Edge of The Union (1985). Since then an independent body was created outside the government’s Jurisdiction and Ofcom was created. They regulate and censor what we are allowed or not allowed to see in the media. My personal opinion of Ofcom is that admittedly it is meant to be an independent organisation so that media is not controlled by the government, it’s agenda is still of the government’s regardless. So as far as I see it, they’re still pretty much a puppet of what the government want. This film particularly highlights how extreme these events are and the images shown are so shocking, that it should alert audiences watching it to the extent of the censorship of these images from us.

All this is good but my dilemma is that we live in a new age. Censorship doesn’t affect us in the UK like it does other countries such as Saudi Arabia and China. So what’s the difference between our country and them? The censorship of the internet. The rise of the internet has given ordinary people a new power. A new power to access information at it’s fullest with no censorship. This film doesn’t address the fact that maybe ordinary people don’t care about the truth. Some people are happy living blissfully in ignorance. Maybe it’s my seemingly pessimistic take on society (I prefer realistic to pessimistic) that makes me say this. Even with all the censorship the government or it’s “separate, independent” organisation make, the truth will still always be out there. For those who want it.


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