Billy Bob and journalism

Russell Smith reflects that the kerfuffle between CBC radio host Jian Ghomeshi of Q
and whatsits name … Billy Bob something… “can teach us a lot about
the uneasy relationship between the arts media and the most popular
entertainers.” Smith writes in the Globe and Mail
that stars regularly dictate interview terms to media, so Whatsits’
publicists probably regard journalists as “a branch of the marketing
department.”The idea of giving instructions to journalists doesn’t
strike him as at all odd,” noted Smith. “He was no doubt genuinely
baffled that they don’t take instructions very well at the CBC.”

An earlier Globe editorial pointed out, “There are probably 10,000 groups in Canada that would have killed for the kind of exposure Q offers.”

As it turned out, Ghomeshi’s Billy Bob interview became fascinating in unintended ways and earned Ghomeshi well-deserved kudos. But especially given the CBC’s public broadcasting role, next time I’d prefer, as a
listener, to hear less about the prima donna “stars” whose mugs adorn the infotainment shows and more about artists.

Here’s the infamous — and display of Ghomeshi’s impressive skills — interview: