1. Hi Guest: Welcome to TRIBE, Toronto's largest and longest running online community. If you'd like to post here, or reply to existing posts on TRIBE, you first have to register on the forum. You can register with your facebook ID or with an email address. Join us!

How reliable are our media sources going to be...?

Discussion in 'Politics (deprecated)' started by el presidente Highsteppa, Mar 20, 2003.

  1. Ekka

    Ekka TRIBE Member

    I never implied it wouldn't be biased. ALL sources of media are biased. This being the case, it is up to the individual to seek out alternative viewpoints (in this case middle eastern media sources).
    What's scary is that most people only rely on one perspective for their information without ever considering an alternative perspective.

    Mark Twain once said, "If you don't read the newspaper, you are uninformed; if you do read the newspaper, you are misinformed."
  2. KickIT

    KickIT TRIBE Member

    I actually debate alot of these issues with a guy at work who is very conservative. We both dig up articles and send them to eachother and debate their merits. I've actually enjoyed it immensely. I'm also more than happy to read articles from the other side. Some sources of right leaning news but fairly objective:

    The National Review

    The Atlantic

  3. Subsonic Chronic

    Subsonic Chronic TRIBE Member

    It strikes you as odd, because you think that everything that is contrary the lies that Bush spews, is left-wing hippie nonsense.

    Meanwhile, you're the one falling for conspiracy theories about Iraq hiding WMD's and supporting Al-Queda.

  4. This is sort of what I mean, when the first Gulf War occurred, the BBC was pretty good in reporting the facts and not going quite as much for the sensationalist tangent. But this time around, I'm not quite as sure, and a bit suspicious.

    Problem with the media I'm finding, is that they got rich, and reporting the news to appease their viewership ruins what objectivity remains.
  5. LoopeD

    LoopeD TRIBE Member

    My brother, who is quite right-wing (surprise surprise ;)) and a political major reads the National Review diligently. It was in one of them where I first read about North Koreas human rights atrocities. Thinking it may be embellished by the Review, I looked it up thouroughly on the Net and found every word to be completely true. Course they don't dwell too much on America's shortcomings (though anti-government articles are quite common) but they also don't print lies either - just not all sides of the story (or each magazine would be a foot thick).

  6. MachoMan

    MachoMan TRIBE Member

    BBC's mandate is to be neutral and only report facts. They never take a sensationalist slant and always call it how they see it. Top notch news source.

    As far as the truth goes. I don't think we'll ever know either way.
  7. LoopeD

    LoopeD TRIBE Member

    See, there's another one who's constantly stating their opinions as fact.

    There's just as much fact supporting both sides, if you read all the media other than your militant hippy rags. ;)

    And every accusatory rhetoric comment you throw becomes moot when people like boss Hogg post thread after thread of complete jibba-jabba. There's more rhetoric in those sources than in the text of all Bush's speeches put together.

  8. JMan

    JMan TRIBE Member

    We are discussing the degree to which we should be trusting various media sources. I don’t really know what would make you think that by supporting the left, I have somehow decided not to review media material from the right-wing mainstream sources… quite to the contrary. Exposure to both has crystallized certain FACTUAL information that should be kept top of mind when evaluating all media:

    To my previous points:

    Fact #1 – There still has been no evidence tabled of Iraq’s WMD program, nor is there any proof of an imminent terror or attack risk. Also, the US is in violation of the UN and are going against most of the worlds governments.
    Media perspectives - Some sources have chosen to demand said evidence in order to justify an attack while other have chosen to overlook this (in very “patriotic” fashion). Which sources should be trusted?

    Fact #2 - Media on both sides reported that the US did use illegitimate *evidence* to try and persuade the world to support their cause.
    Media perspectives - Some have recognized the telling nature of this fact and the importance of understanding why the fabrication was necessary while others have downplayed it. Which source should be trusted?

    Fact #3 - The US has a foreign policy agenda that is a glaring double standard and they do in fact support other regimes/countries that are in material breach of the UN and pose a greater threat to the world.
    Media perspectives - Some sources try to make these facts known, while others do not. Which source should be trusted?

    Not really sure what “facts” you are alluding to that I have refuted, or what makes you think I haven’t read “the other side of the story” but those assertions are incorrect.

  9. JMan

    JMan TRIBE Member

    That's an informed perspective I had not considered...
  10. JAR

    JAR TRIBE Member

    interesting article on the subject, although I guess the source (ZNet) is a radical militant hippy-rag.

    ZNet | Mainstream Media

    War Coverage Goes Wall-To-Wall

    by Danny Schechter ; March 19, 2003

    NEW YORK, Mar 19, 2003 -- If you watch American television, it feels like New Year's eve with clocks counting down the minutes before the big ball drops in Times Square. Only this time, the big ball is likely to be a big bomb and the target is Baghdad, but the anticipation, even excitement is the same. That is especially so at the news networks that are planning to share footage from Baghdad and push their top shows onto cable outlets to clear time for wall-to-wall coverage.

    With threat levels escalating in the U.S., journalists are also feeling threats in the field. The propaganda war has already moved into high gear. The Bush Administration strategy for managing news and spinning perception is well in place, with more than 500 reporters embedded in military units, with coverage restrictions to "guide" them. Their emphasis will be story telling, focusing on our soldiers. Human interest, not political interests, is the focus.

    Andrew Tyndall studied network news in the week leading up the President's Declaration of War. What did he find? ABC's Peter Jennings, who anchored from the Gulf region on three days, told us that his network has "almost 30 reporters" up close and personal with U.S. troops.

    "These young men know there is tremendous pressure on them to do well-and in a hurry. America expects them to win, even easily," Jennings said. The big story there was sandstorm season, "the oldest enemy in the desert, blinding, disorienting, even painful," according to CBS' Lee Cowan, "enough to peel off paint, grinding its way into machinery and weapons." The winds carry a mixture of chemicals, microbes and nutrients across oceans at a height of 10,000 feet, ABC's Ned Potter explained: "If you see a very colorful sunset, thank the dust from a distant desert."

    There will be no dust in the Pentagon's new million-dollar state-of-the-art high tech media center, built to Hollywood specifications in Qatar so that Supreme Commander Tommy Franks can be all that he can be. Trustworthy former military officers are in place inside the networks to offer the kind of analysis the Pentagon would approve of.

    Elizabeth Jensen of the Los Angeles Times says these TV generals are shaping news coverage: "When a tip comes in, some of the ex-military men will get on the phone -- in private, out of the open-desk chaos of a standard newsroom -- to chase it down, calling sources, oftentimes old buddies, whom even the most-plugged in correspondents can't reach. Gen. Barry McCaffrey likes his NBC job because it lets him "maintain influence on policy, being able to speak to these issues."

    Reporters have been warned to leave the Iraqi capital, guaranteeing there will be fewer eyes on the shock and awe to come. The BBC's veteran war reporter Katie Aidie says she has been told that journalists operating on their own, the so-called "unilaterals," are being warned that they will be targeted by the invading army.

    And what about Arab news outlets with their own sources? They will be targeted, says media war expert and Harper's Publisher John Macarthur. He told Editor and Publisher that he thinks Al -Jazeera, whose office was "accidentally" bombed in Kabul, Afghanistan, may face similar treatment. MacArthur predicts they will be "knocked out in the first 48 hours, like what happened in Kabul."

    Macarthur told Barbara Bedway: "The Pentagon is expecting a kind of Panama-style war, over in three days. Nobody has time to see or ask any questions. I think if embedded reporters see anything important -- or bloody -- the Pentagon will interfere. Same result, different tactic: The truth gets distorted."

    But that's not all. Network news managers have effectively accepted the Administration's rationale for war. Its pundits and experts tend to function as cheerleaders, with few dissenters given voice.

    A study by FAIR, the media watchdog group, found that anti-war views were conspicuous by their absence:

    "Looking at two weeks of coverage (January 30 to February 12), FAIR examined the 393 on-camera sources who appeared in nightly news stories about Iraq on ABC World News Tonight, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News and PBS' NewsHour with Jim Lehrer. The study began one week before and ended one week after Secretary of State Colin Powell's February 5 presentation at the U.N., a time of particularly intense debate about the idea of a war against Iraq on the national and international level.

    More than two-thirds (267 out of 393) of the guests featured were from the United States. Of the U.S. guests, a striking 75 percent (199) were either current or former government or military officials. Only one of the official U.S. sources-- Sen. Edward Kennedy (D.-Mass.) -- expressed skepticism or opposition to the war.

    Even this was couched in vague terms: "Once we get in there, how are we going to get out, what's the loss for American troops going to be, how long we're going to be stationed there, what's the cost is going to be?" Kennedy asked on NBC Nightly News on February 5.

    Similarly, when both U.S. and non-U.S. "Such a predominance of official sources virtually assures that independent and grassroots perspectives will be underrepresented," FAIR said.

    The reporting will be closely managed. Robert Fisk of the Independent points to "a new CNN system of 'script approval' -- the iniquitous instruction to reporters that they send all their copy to anonymous officials in Atlanta to ensure it is suitably sanitized. This suggests that the Pentagon and the Department of State have nothing to worry about. Nor do the Israelis.

    "CNN, of course, is not alone in this paranoid form of reporting. Other U.S. networks operate equally anti-journalistic systems. And it's not the fault of the reporters. CNN's teams may use clichés and don military costumes -- you will see them do this in the next war -- but they try to get something of the truth out. Next time, though, they're going to have even less chance. "

    That was Fisk before the Countdown to Combat was approved. More recently, Fisk has issued a language alert, now moving to an elevated level.

    His clichés to counter theirs:

    "Inevitable revenge" -- the executions of Saddam Hussein's Ba'ath party officials, which no one actually said were inevitable.

    "Stubborn" or "suicidal"-- describes Iraqi forces fighting instead of retreating.

    "Allegedly" -- for all carnage caused by Western forces.

    "At last, the damning evidence" -- used when reporters enter old torture chambers.

    "Officials here are not giving us much access" -- a clear sign that reporters in Baghdad are confined to their hotels.

    "Life goes on" -- for any pictures of Iraq's poor making tea.

    "What went wrong?"-- to accompany pictures illustrating the growing anarchy in Iraq, as if it were not predicted.

    The War is with us. The reporting will fan its flames as surely as the fires of the oil wells.

    Danny Schechter writes a daily media analysis or Mediachannel.org. His latest book is MEDIA WARS: News at a Time of Terror (Rowman & Littlefield)
  11. Boss Hog

    Boss Hog TRIBE Member

    The irony kills me.
  12. simple10

    simple10 TRIBE Member

    it's funny. i was talking with my mild mannered middle aged Catholic mom this morning and she said, "I can't even stand watching the news anymore about all of this. None of it is fact, it all seems like a bunch of propaganda."

    We're not as blind as you think, and it extends beyond the younger generation/ radicals.
  13. beaker

    beaker TRIBE Member

  14. JMan

    JMan TRIBE Member

    I do sincerely believe that. There seems to be a large portion of the US population that have successfully dealt with the massive propaganda onslaught and come to their own conclusions... I think it’s extra commendable because I would think it would be more difficult there to find unbiased media information… the major media sources seem so united in their versions. Also, I would think the patriotism which Americans are famous for (and others often envy them for) makes it difficult for those that don’t agree with the government to step forward and voice their opinions. Calls of traitor seem to follow those folks everywhere (at least the famous ones).
  15. simple10

    simple10 TRIBE Member

    i honestly see something different with this invasion. more people have more access to outside news sources because of the internet. more people are becoming informed by default. there is very little of the blind patriotism we've seen in every conflict before this.
  16. JMan

    JMan TRIBE Member

    The beauty of that US invention, the internet!
  17. simple10

    simple10 TRIBE Member

    haha! oh the irony of something that the US gov't invented may ultimately lead to it's undoing!

    it brings a tear to the eye...
  18. JMan

    JMan TRIBE Member

    no kidding - I've said that sooooo many times in the last 3 or 4 months.
  19. MeL_Roc

    MeL_Roc TRIBE Member

    I think you have to be careful when reading or watching any kind of form of media. You can't believe everything you hear. The Media usually identifies with 'dominant interests', and therefore,other sides and opinions are left out.

  20. I think honestly it's fufilling it's purpose much more than they ever intended.

    Think for a second. How do you cover up a secret and make sure that no-one knows what to believe? Instead of hiding the information, bury it with tons of dead ends, misleading information, crackpots and information overload. Weave it into other peices of fiction or lies. Give everyone a voice to a point where the cacophony is so loud you can't discern one voice from another.

    Simple rule of chaos theory - the more people you get on a comitee, the less gets done, because there are more points of view and the singular vision gets diluted, everyone needs their say. And things get sidetracked. The internet is the perfect thing for something like this.
  21. JMan

    JMan TRIBE Member

    Thing is, I don't think this is what's happening... there is more anti-war sentiment than ever in the US, so while there may be varying degree's of left or right that make up numerous positions, in general, people either are for war or against, and the internet seems to be evening out the traditonal media platforms.

Share This Page