The mainstream media has on multiple occasions openly admitted how it’s reporting is biased and to an extent predetermined by the ‘interests’ of their political and financial interests. As the International Forecaster reports:
New York Times’ Public Editor Liz Spayd’s column “The Clinton Story You Didn’t Read Here” where she criticized the paper for not covering the story of Hillary Clinton’s pants-on-fire interview with Fox where she lied about her lies about the email scandal (talk about meta!).
Then there was CNN’s Chris Cuomo making the off-the-cuff admission that “We couldn’t help [Clinton] any more than we have. She’s gotten a free ride so far from the media. We’re the biggest ones promoting her campaign!”
Now the New York Times has published another astonishing column, this time by media columnist Jim Rutenberg. In his August 7th column, titled “Trump Is Testing the Norms of Objectivity in Journalism,” Rutenberg asks: “If you’re a working journalist and you believe that Donald J. Trump is a demagogue playing to the nation’s worst racist and nationalistic tendencies, that he cozies up to anti-American dictators and that he would be dangerous with control of the United States nuclear codes, how the heck are you supposed to cover him?”
He goes on to say:
“Because if you believe all of those things, you have to throw out the textbook American journalism has been using for the better part of the past half-century, if not longer, and approach it in a way you’ve never approached anything in your career. If you view a Trump presidency as something that’s potentially dangerous, then your reporting is going to reflect that. You would move closer than you’ve ever been to being oppositional. That’s uncomfortable and uncharted territory for every mainstream, nonopinion journalist I’ve ever known, and by normal standards, untenable.”
It’s no real secret that the Mainstream Media is biased, stories are reported to suit their sponsors and political interests, but is the Alternative Media really any less free from this type of bias?
Of course not, the alternative media has become ever more popular over the last decade due to Social Media, but also the lack of trust in the Mainstream. With the Alternative Media asking questions that the likes of CNN, Fox News and the BBC to name just a few fail to ask. But the same human bias is inevitable in any publication, whether it be financially motivated or due to the strong opinion of the writer.
But aside from the Financial and Political motives behind the media there is also the influence of personal bias.
It is Human Nature to see and hear things that suit the observers current opinion, as it is also Human Nature to disregard those things that do not comply with ones current understanding. To stop this bias we have to be conscious of it.
Just as the Mainstream Media would never praise Alternative Medicine for finding an effective way to treat Cancer, the Alternative Media would never praise the Mainstream Medical industry for a new breakthrough in treating Cancer, regardless of it’s efficacy.
While the Mainstream Media pushes Vaccines the Alternative Media does the opposite ; and while the Mainstream Media stick closely to the official narrative supplied by the State when Terrorist attacks occur, the Alternative Media refuse to accept any truth in the official narrative and provide an almost polar opposite narrative of the event. Both ‘sides’ follow an almost predictable approach to just about any topic, but nothing in reality is so cut and dry, so black and white, or true and false.
We know as well as anybody else just how hard it is to maintain a fair, unbiased and critical Media platform. Opinions are important, however its very important that our opinions do not get in the way of the facts laid out before us. If there are no facts, just speculation and hear say then it’s important to clarify this, and where opinions are given it is important to ensure the reader understands that it is an ‘opinion’ .
This may seem like a condemnation of the Alternative Media, it is not. It’s just a reminder that everything we see, read and hear in today’s topsy turvy World should not be treated as fact, always be critical of the information given regardless of which side of the media fence it was taken from, and most importantly always research further.
When you read an article or watch a news report always: Do your own Research, be critical, research some more – than assume you only know a small fraction of the truth!
Image source: Ross Wingo