Chris Lynch


OPINION: "The age of outrage"

Tuesday 04th August, 2015

We’re living in interesting times where social media outrage has the powerful ability to set the international news agenda for days on end.  The internet has been running hot with outrage over the senseless killing of Cecil the lion.  Walter Palmer, a dentist from Minnesota, admitted killing “Zimbabwe's most famous lion” on a hunting trip. Last month, this story dominated international news headlines and condemnation over the killing has been overwhelming and rightfully so. However, should the internet or social media outrage lead the news agenda and has the media provided perspective?  Alex Magaisa, a journalist from Zimbabwe, wrote an interesting opinion piece for Al Jazeera. He said “reading about a famous and much-loved Zimbabwean lion in the international news, I was surprised that I did not know Cecil or that he was famous.” In fact Mr Magaisa had never heard of the lion and conducted a poll with his friends and family.  “None of them knew Cecil, who was supposedly a symbol of Zimbabwe, as one British paper put it.”

OPINION: New Zealand's child abuse shame

Thursday 30th July, 2015

New Zealand's broken family culture continues to be exposed in the media spotlight with more and more child abuse cases before the courts.According to Child Matters, New Zealand has the fifth worst child abuse record out of 31 OECD Countries. Tragically, on average, one child is killed every 5 weeks. Most of these children are under five and the largest group is less than a year old. Ninety percent of all child deaths are perpetrated by someone the child knew. For the year 1 July 2013 – 30 June 2014 there were: 146,657 reports of concern to Child Youth and Family – these included 88,768 care and protection reports of concern and 57,889 police family violence referrals. Studies have found abused and neglected children to be at least 25 percent more likely to experience problems such as delinquency, teen pregnancy, low academic achievement, drug use and mental health problems.

OPINION: Cut the spin and give Christchurch answers by Chris Lynch 

Monday 22nd June, 2015

What on earth is going on in the inner city? And who is responsible for getting it back on its feet? Given the ongoing delays of the CBD blueprint, you could be forgiven for thinking CERA is becoming more and more a bureaucratic blister medicated to its eyeballs on benzodiazepines. The one hundred day blueprint should have read “100 days to create, 100 years to finish.” In the private sector, if you fail to deliver on time and on budget, you’re fired, you’re down the road - you’re lucky if you get a second chance. But when the public’s paying your salary, common sense goes out the window.

OPINION: No social in social media

Sunday 14th June, 2015

Where is the social in social media? In the spirit of encouraging ‘audience participation’ I used my public Facebook page to ask people to post their questions to the Prime Minister as I was going to interview him the next day on my radio show. Silly me for thinking people would ask genuine questions about Christchurch. The first few questions were “when is that c*** going to die” and “when is that f**** c**** going to resign. I’m used to the occasional rant via text, or the anonymous post. It’s mildly entertaining getting accused of being extreme left or ‘typical right-wing talkback host, all in the same hour of broadcast. However, what’s become concerning is how people are willing to put their name and face to the low-rent comments they make online. It seems, for some, the rules of social engagement on social media are different to what they would say to someone’s face. Anything goes when it comes to Facebook.