'Oh, so that's who Richard Morris is..." Lord Hattersley on The Daily Politics

'An influential activist' - The Guardian

'Iain Dale, without the self loathing' - Matthew Fox in The New Statesman

You are a tinker...' - Tim Farron

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Vivisection, PR and Hollywood movies

I find myself conflicted.

Vivisection is a difficult area and I am conscious of the pros and cons of both sides of the argument. Testing on monkeys is especially difficult and this has been amply demonstrated this week by the publication of Professor Sir Patrick Bateson's review of recent UK research.

But it's the timing of the release of the report that troubles me.

It could of course be entirely coincidental - I truly hope it is - but in 2 weeks a Hollywood blockbuster examining the (albeit fanciful) side effects of vivisection on apes ( which is illegal in the UK) is being released. And the report has been released in the same week that the main publicity for 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes' has begun. Surely it cannot be the case that this serious and important study has been timed for release to help promote a Hollywood film? I truly hope not.

On the other hand - and here's where the conflict comes in - if the release has been timed the other way around, ie. The authors of the report are using the film to maximise coverage of their findings, then I think that's rather clever.

In which case, I'm a bit of a hypocrite on this.

Ho hum

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