31 months ago, in January 2018, during the silly season, a journalists term for the Xmas – January holiday period in which nothing happens, a Herald journalist came up with an idea.
He went back a decade and read the Herald in January 2008 in the hope of regurgitating something of interest from a decade ago. Unfortunately, he found nothing worth writing about, so he became “creative.”
Specifically, he took a report of a young fellow called Sonny Fai who’d drowned in the surf, a common enough January story, and wrote an absurdly hyperbolic piece entitled the “tragic life and death of Sonny Fai,” hanging his hat as an angle on a suggestion that Fai had showed promise at football.
The Herald then left this “story” on its website for a year until I sent it up in this blog.
Well, bugger me, last week they relaunched it again, this time as “The Remarkable life and tragic death of Sonny Fai.” There was absolutely nothing remarkable about this lad’s life. Laughing at journalists is age-old. Worldwide they cop it for dishonesty which the vast majority don’t deserve. But this Sonny Fai absurdity is not only ghoulish but surely must now rate as the most outrageous fiction writing ever to grace a New Zealand newspaper.
Like print media everywhere, the Herald is hoping their pay-per-view website will ultimately provide them a news reporting role once the fast fading print operation inevitably bites the dust.
Well, it’s a hell of a way to go about it with this Sonny Fai rank silliness.