A brief commentary of U.S. TV News

Unfair comment: The analysis of what someone has said is clearly bent by the reporters themselves along ideological lines. Unrelated facts and events are attached and then attacked, and the original news point ends up as little more than a launching pad for the experts' own political perspectives.

Tail-chasing and navel gazing: The media reports constantly on itself. And that really does mean constantly. Anything reported on the TV news instantly becomes something to be reported on. For an entire day the lead on most TV networks was whether the media was giving Obama too much coverage. The second day comprised of whether the coverage given to Obama was too uncritical. By the third day, much of the coverage was about the previous two days' coverage.

Never let the story get in the way: The focus is entirely on the back story, and the actual news is given lip-service. So you'll hear more about how a decision was arrived at than what the actual decision was, or what impact it might have.

The Jerry Springer school of journalism: There is never a neutral statement - it is always an extreme perspective. If someone attempts to point out logical inconsistencies, they are almost always faced with personal mockery by the other commentators.

The gold(fish) rush: There is absolutely no effort to provide historical context. The news is paced so frenetically that anything beyond soundbites is not tolerated.

When did you stop beating your wife? Coverage is deeply cynical in the sense that people are assumed to have a hidden and planned agenda.

Fight! Fight! Fight! There is no effort to reach a greater understanding. Instead, the sole intent is to provoke disagreement.

[Excerpt of an article by Kieren McCarthy,The Guardian]

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