There are many people who post tourist guides on YouTube. They may be on other sites, too, but I don’t look. These vary in quality considerably.

I know when I travel that there are basic things that I like to know. What public transport there is, for example, and how to use it. How to get to and from the airport. Places to avoid. Even how to cross the road.

If you see a video entitled “10 things that will shock you about London”, then you know you are going to find out something of major importance.

In the first video I am thinking of (no, I won’t lower myself to giving a link), the presenter says that the first shocking thing is that London is big. That is shocking? The presenter is plainly some small town American who has no concept of the world (despite his travel videos, well, actually, mostly of his children playing) and no understanding that one of the major cities of the world is going to be relatively large.

Elsewhere, someone else is shocked that we do dates ‘wrongly’. In America it is MM/DD/YY. Here and for almost all the rest of the world it is DD/MM/YY. Even the USA immigration department acknowledge that the American way of doing dates is confusing, as the immigration forms ask for the more standard format. You, lady presenter, cannot cope with the dates, but that doesn’t mean they are ‘wrong’. Of course, neither is the best. YYYY/MM/DD would be advantageous for many reasons.

Someone else was ‘shocked’ that roads in the UK are not straight and that the cars drive on the wrong side! And that we use the metric system, obviously ‘wrong’. And we don’t accept dollars in our shops.

And so on. Shocking.

You would hope that people who create websites, do blogs or vlogs about any topic will bring some knowledge or informed commentary to a subject. I talk about London because I have lived here for nearly 40 years. There are things I don’t write about, because I don’t know.

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