Posts filed under ‘Media – General’
I don’t think this needs any splanin’:
Americans’ confidence in television news is at a new low by one percentage point, with 21% of adults expressing a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in it. This marks a decline from 27% last year and from 46% when Gallup started tracking confidence in television news in 1993.
For some reason I find this pretty surprising. I would have thought the number of people who have confidence in our so-called news would be higher. So, good on us for our skepticism. The, again, so-called news outlets deserve it with their lazy, if it leads it bleeds reporting.
Mexico’s biggest television network sold prominent politicians favourable coverage in its flagship news and entertainment shows and used the same programmes to smear a popular leftwing leader, documents seen by the Guardian appear to show.
The documents – which consist of dozens of computer files – emerge just weeks ahead of presidential elections on 1 July, and coincide with the appearance of an energetic protest movement accusing the Televisa network of manipulating its coverage to favour the leading candidate, Enrique Peña Nieto.
The documents, which appear to have been created several years ago, include:
• An outline of fees apparently charged for raising Peña Nieto’s national profile when he was governor of the state of Mexico.
• A detailed media strategy explicitly designed to torpedo a previous presidential bid by leftwing candidate Andres Manuel López Obrador, who is currently Peña Nieto’s closest rival.
• Payment arrangements suggesting that the office of former president Vicente Fox concealed exorbitant public spending on media promotion.
Thing is, the big “news” organizations in the U.S. don’t sell favorable coverage to favored candidates and smear popular leftwingers, they do it for free!
I love this perfect description of what passes for “news” in the U.S. these days. It’s a quote from Aaron Sorkin, the creator of The West Wing who will debut a new show on HBO on June 24 called, The Newsroom:
The thing that I worry about more is the media’s bias toward fairness. Nobody uses the word lie anymore. Suddenly, everything is “a difference of opinion.” If the entire House Republican caucus were to walk onto the floor one day and say “The Earth is flat,” the headline on the New York Times the next day would read “Democrats and Republicans Can’t Agree on Shape of Earth.” I don’t believe the truth always lies in the middle. I don’t believe there are two sides to every argument. I think the facts are the center. And watching the news abandon the facts in favor of “fairness” is what’s troubling to me.
But back to my point. It seems very important that if someone on the right in the news screws up in a really bad way, that the media find someone on the left who screwed up in some kind of way so that we can have a “One From Column A, One From Column B” kind of situation. And that if there are five from Column A, there can’t be only three from Column B, because then they’ll be accused of liberal bias.
Bingo. Exactly right.
And then there’s this bonus quote — from the show — that is hilarious:
In one episode of Newsroom, we hear Will say, “I’m a registered Republican—I only seem liberal because I believe that hurricanes are caused by high barometric pressure and not by gay marriage.”
Gotta remember that!
Check out this infographic about media consolidation in the U.S., and worldwide. Six companies control — get this — 90% of what we read, watch or listen to. News Corp. is one of the six:
Depressing and dangerous.
Again, see more at the link above.
The “news” media reached a new, historic low today when the PressMentor out of Newton, Illinois published an article titled: Reis Objects to Attorney General’s Support of Lawsuit, published as straight news and written by…Illinois State Respresentative David REIS. Here’s Reis quoting himself:
State Representative David Reis (R-Ste. Marie) is calling upon Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan to recuse herself and the resources of her taxpayer-funded state office from supporting two lawsuits questioning the constitutionality of Illinois’ gay marriage ban.
“As Attorney General, it is her office’s duty to support the Illinois Constitution. Statutorily, it has been long established in Illinois that marriage is between a man and a woman,” Reis said. “Madigan’s use of scarce taxpayer resources is an injustice to the oath of office she swore to uphold.”
Check it out. He goes on and on and on in an article he wrote, that is totally favorable to his pov, that is, again, presented as straight news. The worsd “editorial” or “op-ed” are no where to be found
Oh, and they call themselves the Press Mentor? Heaven help us.
Demonstrations surrounding the NATO meeting in Chicago have begun. This pic was posted about an hour ago:
What’s happening here is the Chicago Police Department, whose salaries we pay for with Our Tax Dollars, are standing against We the People. They work for us, not the corporatocracy. Ah, do they know that?
A cause for concern.
More NATO/ Occupy things happening tomorrow and Monday in Chitown. If there’s a riot*, the “liberal media” will cover it. Otherwise, crickets.
* Per Martin Luther King, Jr.; “A riot is the language of the unheard.”
Norm Ornstein is a Republican who’s as inside-the-Beltway as you can get so this is really something:
Last month, Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein published an Op ed and a book making the extremely controversial argument that both parties aren’t equally to blame for what ails Washington. They argued that the GOP — by allowing extremists to roam free and by wielding the filibuster to achieve government dysfunction as a political end in itself — were demonstrably more culpable for creating what is approaching a crisis of governance.
It turns out neither man has been invited on to the Sunday shows even once to discuss this thesis. As Bob Somerby and Kevin Drum note, these are among the most quoted people in Washington — yet suddenly this latest topic is too hot for the talkers, or not deemed relevant at all.
I ran this thesis by Ornstein himself, and he confirmed that the book’s publicity people had tried to get the authors booked on the Sunday shows, with no success.
“Not a single one of the Sunday shows has indicated an interest, and I do find it curious,” Ornstein told me.
Ornstein also noted another interesting point. Their thesis takes on the media for falling into a false equivalence mindset [also known as "fair and balanced"] and maintaining the pretense that both sides are equally to blame. … What’s more, some reporters have privately indicated their frustration with their editorial overlords’ apparent deafness to this idea.
“The piece focused on press culpability — it would be hard to find a more sensitive issue for the media than the question of whether they’re doing their job,” Ornstein said. “We got tons of emails from some of the biggest reporters in the business, saying, `We’ve raised this in the newsroom, and editors just brush it aside.’”
This is curious. Is “experts confirm that, yes, one side is more to blame than the other, and journalists should say so” really too hot a topic for the Sunday shows?
This is so illustrative of the media’s obsession with presenting e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g in a “fair and balanced” way. Sometimes one side or another is more responsible than the other for a thing that happens but that can’t be acknowledged because the media is terrified of being called biased. No, they’re terrified of being called “liberal,” thanks to Republicans jumping down their throat at any hint of that for the last 30 years. We live in an era of “he said, she said” or “Democrats said, Republicans said” journalism.
Facts are facts and Ornstein and his co-author Thomas Mann have made a case that Republicans are largely responsible for the deadlock in Washington but in the “liberal media,” that’s untouchable because it isn’t “fair and balanced.”
I’d say Peter Daou has a pretty darn smart daughter. At 3-years-old she already knows that given the state of American television, watching it is a great way to get the brain to go flat.
It’s unusual for me to have two Tweets of the Day but I couldn’t resist this one:
I have a big problem with the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Rather, I have a big problem with White House “correspondents” hobnobbing with the people they’re supposed to cover. One of the primary responsibilities of a
correspondent journalists is to expose corruption and wrong-doing on the part of government and corporate officials, but when they become friends, that tends not to happen.
That said, here is my favorite shot from last night’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner, which was held at the Washington Hilton:
Here is the full video of President Obama’s hilarious, kickass, wonderfully sarcastic speech. (The screenshot above was taken from a faux campaign ad that airs beginning at 12:11 in the video.)
(Video via C-SPAN.)
I’m putting this “Journalists Security Guide” up in part to save it for myself because I haven’t had a chance to look at it in detail yet but also to help throw it out onto the Internets.
The world isn’t safe for journalists anymore. Countries across the globe — the United States included — are instituting measures to restrict the freedom of speech and freedom of the press.
The international Committee to Protect Journalists issued these new, detailed (and frightening) guidelines this month as to how journalists can protect themselves in areas it never occurred to me they needed protecting:
Go to the original version here. There’s more.
It’s incredible what real journalists do to bring us news. Imagine being so passionate about what’s going on somewhere that you’re willing to do this:
Andrew Sullivan, another favorite, has a video up over at The Daily Beast of Ackerman answering the question: “What do you hate most about beltway culture” Here’s what Ackerman had to say:
I hate everything. I hate everything about this place um, that isn’t ah, directly related to the friends that I’ve made here. Um, the family that I’ve started here.
D.C. itself is a wonderful place.
The culture of this business we’re in [journalism] is just soul-crushing. Um, the self-importance, the humorlessness, the bad sense of humor, ah, the fact that ah, people deliberately take things out of context, the feigned outrage, the dedicated lack of real-keeping (?), the almost aggressive insulting of one’s intelligence that ah, marks successful political discourse and combat and media discourse.
The deceit on the part of editors um, who don’t work for Wired magazine or Wired.com.
Ah, the relentless self-importance.
The unhealthy offense taken at basic profanity.
Uh, the decided lack of creativity.
The class politics that never get acknowledged as class politics.
The um, disdain for um, the disdain for poor people.
Um, the aggressive refusal to recognize that there’s such a thing as white privilege.
The aggressive refusal to recognize that the media in Washington is relentlessly just white and rich and unchanging and self-satisfied about all of these things.
The inability to know how to operate on a subway. The inability to call the Metro a subway. The aggressiveness with which people take offense when you call the Metro a subway because you grew up in a real city with a mother fucking subway.
The restaurant culture is good. You know, people do like to cook here.
Ah, the aggressive refusal amongst other people outside of the beltway to see beltway people as human beings like them. The idea that we are, you know, aliens in some way, or mutants. The refusal of media mutants within the Beltway to recognize that there is some truth to that even if it is not totally true.
The idea amongst beltway people that one must, you know, if they’re going to own this and take back their lives, in that sense, that they have to aggressively own so many disgusting things about this; the way in which um, all of us eventually, even we think we’re challenging this culture, acquiesce to it in important ways.
I wanted to post this because it’s rare to hear D.C. media insiders talk about the culture of D.C. media insiders, the Extremely Smart People who set the tone for so much of our discourse and who we see on the teevee all the freakin’ time but who don’t talk about anything that matters to us. We had a pretty good idea why that was, but now what we thought all along has been confirmed.
Again, see the video here.
“Liberal media” my ass:
Mitt Romney complained last week of a “vast left-wing conspiracy” in the media, but a study published today revealed the presumptive Republican nominee has enjoyed more positive press coverage than President Obama in recent months.
The Pew Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism found that negative coverage of Obama outweighed positive coverage in each of 15 weeks between Jan. 2 and April 15. Romney, meanwhile, had six weeks of mostly positive stories and another four in which positive and negative coverage were roughly equal.
In fact, positive stories about the former Massachusetts governor have outnumbered negative ones almost 2-to-1 since the Feb. 28 Michigan primary, which Romney won.
Okay folks, let’s put this lie to bed once and for all:
Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor acknowledged on Al Jazeera English (4/14/12) that Iranian leaders have never called for Israel to be “wiped” off the map.
Meridor agreed with interviewer Teymoor Nabili’s suggestion that the supposed remarks were never actually made; Iranian leaders, Meridor said,
come basically ideologically, religiously, with the statement that Israel is an unnatural creature, it will not survive. They didn’t say “we’ll wipe it out,” you are right, but [that] it will not survive, it is a cancerous tumor, it should be removed.
Hostile words, to be sure, but not the menacing threat endlessly reported in corporate U.S. media in recent years. (Iran, Israel and “wiped off the map” occur together more than 8,500 times in the Nexis news database in the last seven years.)
This has been a case of the U.S. media terrorizing its own citizens. So I’m sure we’ll be seeing corrections all over the place any minute now, you know, like all those corrections we saw after it turned out Iraq didn’t have any “weapons of mass destruction.” (Yeah, right.)
Wow. Here we have a perfect example of how the “liberal” American media brainwashes us into fearing or hating groups that those in power decide we should ah, fear or hate. This example is from today’s Washington Post.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has delivered a letter to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that calls for a resumption of peace negotiations.
Got that? Palestinian Authority President Abbas wants to resume peace negotiations, but the Israeli lobby wants us to hate and fear the Palestinians (nobody bucks the Israeli lobby), so check out the photo the WaPo used to illustrate the article:
I remember when there were no advertisements — none — on public broadcasting stations such as PBS. It was glorious. The effect of the ban was that the corporatocracy, through their ad buys, wouldn’t and couldn’t influence the programming. I.e., a station such as MSNBC, owned by defense contractor General Electric, isn’t going to knock wars or weapons production or defense contractors or the bloated Defense Department’s budget. PBS would.
But, say good-bye to those times. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals just opened the door to more corporate influence (can you believe it?) in our already corporate-saturated media:
A divided U.S. appeals court struck down a federal ban on political advertising on public TV and radio stations, a decision that could open the public airwaves to a heavy dose of campaign ads leading up to the November elections.
By a 2-1 vote, a panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said the Federal Communications Commission violated the First Amendment’s free speech clause by blocking public broadcasters from running political and public issue ads.
The court said the ban was too broad, and that lifting it would not threaten to undermine the educational nature of public broadcast stations.
Sad. Just sad. Noah, my neighbor’s darling 3-year-old grandson will never know what a free press is.
This would be Roger Simon,
the “chief political columnist” for Politico, a “journalist” who’s crying out tonight on behalf of millionaire, super-PAC-backed Mitt Romney who Simon apparently thinks is defenseless:
This has GOT to stop?
The next time you see an article authored by someone at Politico, remember this. They’ve got an agenda.
Oh, and BTW, as a “journalist,” you’d think Roger would have a high regard for freedom of speech. Guess not.
And let’s not forget the dogs, as in Dogs Against Romney. Thanks for the reminder Rog.
Per the headline above, I’m there as long as that standard is applied to e-v-e-r-y-o-n-e:
The Media Map: Who’s Reading What And Where
We worked with Bitly and its data on millions of Web clicks to find the most influential media outlets in the country. This map shows which news sources are read and shared at above-average levels by state.
Go to the map here. Roll over the various news outlets to the right (not shown in this screenshot) to see where they are the most popular.
A couple surprising things: (1) Fox isn’t as pervasive as I would have though, particularly in the south, and (2) Idaho is a big MSNBC state? Interesting.
Wow, Brian Lamb is retiring:
Brian Lamb, who created the revolutionary nonprofit cable television network C-Span in the late 1970s and has been its public face ever since, is handing it over to two lieutenants, Rob Kennedy and Susan Swain.
Effective April 1, they will become the co-chief executives of C-Span and Mr. Lamb will become the executive chairman, formalizing a management change that has been years in the making. Mr. Lamb will continue to host “Q&A,” his Sunday night interview program, and will pursue other interests, like teaching.
The announcement will come on Monday, 33 years to the day that C-Span — short for Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network — came onto cable television, predating CNN and ESPN.
C-Span’s commitment to carry every minute of the proceedings of the United States House of Representatives without commercials is taken for granted now, but it was an extraordinary act at the time, since most Americans then saw of Congress only what was reported on the nightly news and in newspapers.
I have a friend who had a crush on Brian, and it’s no wonder. He’s a hero to those of us who care about transparency, freedom of speech and an informed public.
Thanks again Brian.
My Tweet of the Day:
Have you noticed how we here in the United States hear virtually nothing on a daily basis about what’s going on outside our border?
If we didn’t click on headlines like this, “news” organizations wouldn’t publish them:
Geezus. Thoughts about the collapse of civilization come to mind.
This is my Tweet of the Day:
After a week dominated by Republican men talking about eliminating women’s contraceptive rights, we’re headed into a talk “news” Sunday consisting of men — all of the scheduled guests are men — talking about ah, women’s contraceptive rights: Guest Lineups for the Sunday Talk Shows.
CAN YOU HEAR ME (SCREAMING) NOW?
Filed under: The”LiberalMedia?”
This is crazy.
Check out this headline at the Daily Mail,
over this picture:
An otter looks to the heavens and prays for food?
Forget the headline. Read the article:
‘I took the photos at Whipsnade Zoo, which has this island with a purpose built moat for the otters. I had to hide there for a long time to get the shot.
‘The otter was running around cradling a stone under his arm when he was surprised by another otter jumping out of the water which caused him to jump and throw the stone in the air.
‘When he started trying to grab it I took the snap.’
Gee. Imagine what your memory of this would be if all you read was the headline.
In his barnstorming speech [yesterday in Wisconsin], the President called for tax cuts for American manufacturers and higher taxes for companies that move jobs overseas. He stood before the American flag and the blue Wisconsin flag, which portrays working men of old — a sailor and a miner below a busy badger. Emblazoned across the bottom is the year of the state’s founding, 1848.
Yet, reporting on the speech, Politico reporter Donovan Slack wrote, “Behind the stage where he will speak today are two flags: an American one, as usual, and right alongside it — and just as large — a flag for the local union, Wisconsin 1848.”
“The President has been mum in recent months on the battle raging in the Badger State between unions and Republican Gov. Scott Walker,” he continued. But Slack saw the presence of the “union” flag as definite evidence concerning Obama’s feelings. “It’s very clear what side President Obama is on here in Wisconsin,” writes Slack.
Politico has since removed the article.
There’s no excuse for this kind of sloppy “reporting” (other than an agenda-driven mindset). Slack saw what he wanted to see and reported it as fact without, apparently, taking two seconds to oh, say, Google “Wisconsin state flag,” or “local union, Wisconsin 1848″ for confirmation.
A whopping 39% of Mainers — that would be a total of 2,190 people — voted for Mitt
Romney in today’s Republican caucuses there.
Ron Paul came in second at 36% with 1,996 votes.
Rick Santorum was third at 18% with 989 votes, and
Newt and Callista Gingrich came in fourth at 6% with a pitiful 349 votes.
Relevant factoid: Maine’s population? 1,328,188.
So, 5,524 Republicans voted in Maine today and the cables have been hanging on it all week? Really?
Ed Schultz just minutes ago: “Why would a right-wing hack” like Karl Rove “come out and talk about a Super Bowl ad? Hahahaha.”
Ed devoted his entire radio show today to ♥loving♥ the ad and as of 8:26 p.m. ET, he’s spent half an hour talking about it on his TV show.
What a tool.