About the Media.....

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About the Media..... Empty About the Media.....

Post by eddie on Sat Jul 09, 2016 6:37 pm

I can clip some bits here but the article needs to be read in its entirety and it's too long to c&p.
I found it by reading something else and was drawn the article "Our Amercian Pravda"

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/our-american-pravda/


[clipped]

The realization that the world is often quite different from what is presented in our leading newspapers and magazines is not an easy conclusion for most educated Americans to accept, or at least that was true in my own case. For decades, I have closely read the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and one or two other major newspapers every morning, supplemented by a wide variety of weekly or monthly opinion magazines. Their biases in certain areas had always been apparent to me. But I felt confident that by comparing and contrasting the claims of these different publications and applying some common sense, I could obtain a reasonably accurate version of reality. I was mistaken.

Aside from the evidence of our own senses, almost everything we know about the past or the news of today comes from bits of ink on paper or colored pixels on a screen, and fortunately over the last decade or two the growth of the Internet has vastly widened the range of information available to us in that latter category. Even if the overwhelming majority of the unorthodox claims provided by such non-traditional web-based sources is incorrect, at least there now exists the possibility of extracting vital nuggets of truth from vast mountains of falsehood. Certainly the events of the past dozen years have forced me to completely recalibrate my own reality-detection apparatus..[clipped]



[clipped]Author James Bovard has described our society as an “attention deficit democracy,” and the speed with which important events are forgotten once the media loses interest might surprise George Orwell.

Consider the story of Vioxx, a highly lucrative anti-pain medication marketed by Merck to the elderly as a substitute for simple aspirin. After years of very profitable Vioxx sales, an FDA researcher published a study demonstrating that the drug greatly increased the risk of fatal strokes and heart attacks and had probably already caused tens of thousands of premature American deaths. Vioxx was immediately pulled from the market, but Merck eventually settled the resulting lawsuits for relatively small penalties, despite direct evidence the company had long been aware of the drug’s deadly nature. Our national media, which had earned hundreds of millions of dollars in advertising revenue from Vioxx marketing, provided no sustained coverage and the scandal was soon forgotten. Furthermore, the press never investigated the dramatic upward and downward shifts in the mortality rates of elderly Americans that so closely tracked the introduction and recall of Vioxx; as I pointed out in a 2012 article, these indicated that the likely death toll had actually been several times greater than the FDA estimate. Vast numbers Americans died, no one was punished, and almost everyone has now forgotten.[clipped]



Lots and lots to read and lots of food for thought.

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About the Media..... Empty Re: About the Media.....

Post by Ben Reilly on Sat Jul 09, 2016 7:51 pm

Aside from a political slant (to one way or the other, and usually pretty easy for the average reader to spot), the media has a few glaring biases that I will happily point out to anybody.

1) The media (for the most part) is out to make money.

That means that pressure will be applied to journalists to ignore the company's advertisers. Local U.S. news broadcasts almost never mention climate change. They also depend heavily on car dealerships' ad buys. Media consolidation makes the problem worse, though some companies will boldly report on their parent companies. The money issue also acts as something of a check, though -- a media outlet that develops a reputation for lying will only attract an audience that wants to be lied to.

2) The media is biased toward conflict and the sensational.

Especially the privately-owned, for-profit media is in the business of grabbing your attention and selling it to advertisers. This works better when its content is attention-grabbing, so news outlets focus more on those kinds of stories.

3) The media is biased toward stories that are easy to do.

This is driven by a lot of factors, but probably the biggest one is the loss of thousands of journalists to other fields, forced out of the industry by mass layoffs. There were 56,900 daily newspaper reporters working in the U.S. in 1990; by 2014 there were just 32,900. Yet the vast majority of news is still uncovered by daily newspapers (people often don't realize how much broadcast media springboards off of newspaper coverage, or that blog posts, online articles, tweets, etc. by daily newspaper reporters still count as newspaper content).

Newspaper reporters in 1990: 56,900 / U.S. population: 250 million

Newspaper reporters in 2014: 32,900 / U.S. population: 320 million

The public appetite for news hasn't decreased. So if you do the math, the average reporter has to create content for about twice as many people today than in 1990. He or she can't spend a week or a month on one story anymore (unless he or she is very special). Reporters have to find easy stories that can be knocked out in hours, relying on phone calls and e-mails. Some reporters are writing at least a dozen articles per week -- that gives less than four hours per article in a standard 40-hour week.

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About the Media..... Empty Re: About the Media.....

Post by eddie on Sat Jul 09, 2016 7:58 pm

Did you read the article? You'll find it interesting.

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