As German bookings to Majorca continue to plummet a newspaper which is doing Majorca few favours is the mass circulation Bild (Germany's answer to the Sun). This is the newspaper which was calling for a boycott of Majorca because of the tourist tax and which urged its readers to write to King Juan Carlos and complain. Its latest “smear” campaign is the shark, the totally inoffensive 7-metre animal unfortunately captured by fishermen off Pollensa last week. Enter Bild and you would have thought that we had a man-eating shark straight out of Jaws lurking off the coast. Now Bild's love affair with Majorca is very similar to the one which the Sun had with the Conservative Party. Two years ago, Majorca could do little wrong but now the tide has turned and the paper appears to be blasting Majorca at every opportunity. The reason, no-one knows, but all this negative publicity is doing nothing to help the island. I feel the Majorcan authorities are partly to blame. Although the island authorities have an army of press officers none of them speaks English or German and they are also very difficult to find after hours. I am not saying that Bild would have given different treatment to the shark story but if the story had an “official line” I am sure that it would have been more beneficial to the island. The local government, Council of Majorca, and town councils obviously have to worry about public opinion in Majorca but they must also dedicate some of their time to worrying about what appears in German and British newspaper because after all, these two countries are our bread and butter markets.

Jason Moore

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