(This is the second in a series of posts about the talks at the 2015 Alberta Secular Conference: None of the Above.)
Rob Breakenridge is a media personality. He co-hosts a daytime radio show and hosts an evening radio news show (also heard here), as well as being a regular columnist in one of the province’s main newspapers.
He talked to us about being openly secular in the media. I did not take many notes – mainly because he is an engaging speaker, but also because there were no action points – things he was encouraging us to do to follow up on what he talked about. So this is a short post.
My main takeaway from his talk was twofold. First, his experience is that it is possible to be blunt and honest about what you do and do not believe, without suffering in the media. He does not feel editorial pressure to present a particular message or gloss over things or any of that. Second, that sort of pressure is more likely to occur in some places (small, local outlets in predominantly religious areas) than in others (larger media outlets and those in more diverse communities). As consumers, we should be aware of this, and not be afraid to let media outlets know when we feel they are taking a biased or unprofessional stance against our community (or any other group).
(If anyone from the conference is reading this, I would be grateful for comments to fill in the gaps – I know Rob talked about more, but as I said, I didn’t take copious notes.)