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Is There A Crisis In Mainstream Media?

Wed May 25, 2005 10:37 am

this is an article that appeared in the Daily News in New York Today. It is copied from a blog that it was posted on.

Crisis in the Mainstream
John Leo of U.S. News writes today of the looming crisis facing the mainstream media, and he hits the nail squarely on the head. He begins by discussing the recent Newsweek revelations, but then quickly gets into a broader discussion of media bias, and concludes:

Not long ago, memorable comments about press credibility came from two stars at Newsweek: Evan Thomas and Howard Fineman. During the presidential campaign, Thomas said on TV that the news media wanted John Kerry to win. We knew that, but the candor was refreshing. Fineman said during the flap over Dan Rather and CBS's use of forged documents on the George Bush-National Guard story: "A political party is dying before our eyes--and I don't mean the Democrats. I'm talking about the 'mainstream media' . . . . It's hard to know now who, if anyone, in the 'media' has any credibility." It's worth mentioning here that the unrepentant Rather and his colleague Mary Mapes, who was fired for her role in presenting the forged documents, received a major industry award last week, a Peabody, as well as "extended applause" from the journalists in the crowd. (What's next? A lifetime achievement award for New York Times prevaricator Jayson Blair?)

Instead of trampling Newsweek --the magazine made a mistake and corrected it quickly and honestly--the focus ought to be on whether the news media are predisposed to make certain kinds of mistakes and, if so, what to do about it. The disdain that so many reporters have for the military (or for police, the FBI, conservative Christians, or right-to-lifers) frames the way that errors and bogus stories tend to occur. The antimilitary mentality makes atrocity stories easier to publish, even when they are untrue.

The classic example is CNN's false 1998 story that the U.S. military knowingly dropped nerve gas on Americans during the Vietnam War. On the other hand, brutal treatment of dissenters by Fidel Castro tends to be softened or omitted in the American press because so many journalists still see him as the romanticized figure from their youth in the 1960s.

Another example: It's possible to read newspapers and newsmagazines carefully and never see anything about the liberal indoctrination now taking place at major universities. This has something to do with the fact that the universities are mostly institutions of the left and that newsrooms tend to hire from the left and from the universities in question.

I once complained to an important news executive that he ignored certain kinds of stories. He said that he would like to do them but that his staff wouldn't let him. He admitted his staff had been assembled from one side--guess which?--of the political spectrum. This conversation hardened my conviction that the biggest flaw in mainstream journalism today is the lack of diversity. Much bean-counting goes on in regard to gender and race, but the new hires tend to come from the same economic bracket and the same pool of elite universities, and they tend to have the same take on politics and culture. Much of what they turn out is very good. But when they omit or mess up stories, run badly skewed polls, or publish front-page editorials posing as news stories, nobody seems to notice because groupthink is so strong.

Time is running out on the newsroom monoculture. The public has many options now--as well as plenty of media watchdogs, both professional and amateur. So the press takes its lumps and loses readers.

Is every he says true ? Is there an inherent bias in the media to the left?
short summary of every jewish holiday: they tried to kill us ,we won , lets eat !
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RE: Is There A Crisis In Mainstream Media?

Thu May 26, 2005 12:54 pm

Reading the daily news is sort of like having a conversation with someone who has their nose in the town gossip all day, and passes it on to everyone else afterwards.
To me the daily news has no credibility whatsoever, I stopped reading that, and the New York post 4 years ago. Them and the New York post are both biased newspapers, I don't see the good in reporting about being biased when they're the same way. They're just a bunch of instigators.
I prefer to read USA today. Has more interesting things other than just gossip about Britney Spears, Paris Hilton, or what goes on in the limelight.
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RE: Is There A Crisis In Mainstream Media?

Fri May 27, 2005 2:53 am

''Them and the New York post are both biased newspapers''

You also forgot the New York Times
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RE: Is There A Crisis In Mainstream Media?

Fri May 27, 2005 3:08 am

Quoting Alberchico (Thread starter):
Is there an inherent bias in the media to the left

85% of it, is biased to "The Left".
If you don't stand for SOMETHING, you'll fall for ANYTHING.
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RE: Is There A Crisis In Mainstream Media?

Fri May 27, 2005 3:15 am

Quoting TriStarEnvy (Reply 3):
85% of it, is biased to "The Left".

Statistics regarding the 2000 Bush-Gore contest prove you wrong.

But back to the subject, the REAL issue has been clouded over with political bias from both sides.

The REAL problem is today's information technology and pressure to get news out before the competition does. That's why stories often hit the front page without adequate checking as happened in the past. That Iraq scoop, which on first glance is devastating, can be stolen and put on a paper's website in minutes rather than taking a day or more. Journalists have deadlines which are now measured in minutes rather than days, and this makes for sloppy journalism.

The British Daily Mirror ran the Iraq abuse scandal, and it cost their editor his job. They needed it online and in next morning's papers before the Sun or Daily Mail were alerted to it. Turned out it was based on faked photos, but they went with their instinct and published. It's the almost instant need to have the scoop out nowadays which makes these big stories explode then crumble, rather than being properly checked first.
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RE: Is There A Crisis In Mainstream Media?

Fri May 27, 2005 7:56 am


you fucking hit it on the head man. I just did my Senior Thesis (not graduate), here was the title:

Journalism Ethics and Media Law in Terrorism and War Reporting

What I found was that journalists really do want to report the truth, and they want to do so in a way that makes the war easier to cope with for the people at home. There is a large responsibility for journalists to report news for the good of the country. This was manifest in the early days of World War II, in the way that British journalists downplayed the retreat of the British Army at Dunkirk. To report the whole truth, the entire british citizenry would have lost an extreme amount of morale. There have been others, even in the US, but that is the most extreme example i can think of. But the real reason that stories are printed as they are is because of the search for ad dollars. If people in the United States didnt' want to hear stories of military wrongdoings and mistreatment of prisoners, then they wouldn't hear about them because no one would be watching. which means no one would be watching/reading ads, which means that the media outlets themselves wouldn't be making any money, which means that the media outlets would start covering other things.

thats the deal. the daily news in new york is a sham, as with the post. thats from a journalists point of view however...
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RE: Is There A Crisis In Mainstream Media?

Fri May 27, 2005 11:49 am

Quoting Alberchico (Thread starter):
Is there an inherent bias in the media to the left?

Haven't watched much Fox news lately??? I have a better chance getting elected Pope than Fox has of ever airing a left leaning liberal opinion . . .

Quoting TriStarEnvy (Reply 3):
85% of it, is biased to "The Left".

Please see above.

There's an old saying, believe half of what you see and even less of what you hear. We have, locally, 4 news channels (TV) available. I watch a specific one because they generally remain unbiased . . . conversely, we have one daily newspaper (used to have two until 1991) and it is decidedly, definitely, absolutely way left liberal. What do I read out of it? State headlines, Food Section on Wednesday, Comics. Why, because it is like oxymnoron of Fox news . . .

Every thing and every one has an agenda . . . especially the news media . . . experts at twisting and winding words . . . .

[Edited 2005-05-27 04:49:58]

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