In conclusion of two gruesome years of brutal campaigning and rhetoric, global attention and nationwide anxiety, a president has been elected in the form of an eloquently-speaking 46 year old — Senator Barack Obama.

The opposing party has since acknowledged their defeat and seemingly ambled in the direction of moving on, but anonymous political finger pointing from John McCain’s aides at to past running mate Sarah Palin and back have sparked various amounts of media airtime, and again the media bias topic has been thrown onto the table. 

So in final closing of the election, this question is more or less ready to answer: is the media in fact biased to one side and if so, by how much?

McCain With The MediaI think that in looking at this topic, many can see it in very different ways, based on their political views from the election. It is not a rare sight to see both liberal and conservative blogs and strongly left or right press outlets sending out daily attacks at the media, and that is not where or what would be constructive to do in actually answering this question. Instead, what we have to work with are simply facts and what has happened. 

Blame in this corner generally comes from clips of news anchors strongly defending or attacking a political figure, which can be taken in different ways based both on the context and the topic.

Fox News, attacked daily for bias, has in fact been “exposed” numerous times of taking anti-Obama clips from interviews and failing to air the rest, which most of the time is in fact against McCain. And respectively, frequently attacked MSNBC has not only been accused of bias toward Obama, but has also devoted air time to attack the supposed “right” media. 

But with this aside, to accuse the media of bias is more or less a completely impossible argument to complete in a non-partisan manner. The talking heads most politically attacked are merely hosted by media outlets and not necessarily backed by them — with the exception in my opinion being Bill O’Riley. But in fact, I enjoy viewing O’Riley even though I know him as conservative, in the same way I enjoy watching Keith Olbermann because I know him as a liberal. 

But above this, I honor both O’Riley and Olbermann for simply attacking each other, brutally pointing out mistakes in simply the form of media that we Americans have come to know. I personally perceive Fox News as conservative and MSNBC as liberal, but have come to not simply face these facts, but absorb both in light of what each media outlet has to say, and take it into context when choosing what to believe how to believe. 

So I’ll open this up to the commenters: What do you think — is there bias in the media, by what magnitude, and how is it perceived by you?

Good Press, Bad Press

August 2, 2008

One of the reasons Blogging was thought up was to allow people without credentials or three-foot thick portfolios to report to the world on anything they want. The world – in return, can read it as they please, put their opinions to the side, and look at someone else’s view. They can respond, either by contacting the original writer or writing a piece of their own that is either disagreeing or agreeing with the person. For example, instead of watching a Fox News reporter give a generic report on the Internet, all one must do is power up their computer, and through the internet, read the real story firsthand from a Darfur local. This is why I believe Blogging is the future, and unless the AP can follow the leader, media is the past.

So, with that said, I am greatly puzzled why people, although most feel the press isn’t giving the whole truth at times, still read and (some) daily worship media outlets that have been proven to bend or hide reality. And this isn’t just the obvious, big time newspapers, but magazines, too. How do we truly know what’s real and what’s a publicity stunt? Its definitely hard, with the entire entertainment business always on their toes for a new story, equipped with the best journalists out there. It is no doubt a complex mission. In truth, we don’t know who or what to trust. Everything from Newsweek to OK! has had its ups and downs, rights and wrongs.

And who knows, maybe a source like Hello magazine — who nine times out of ten will have their five page spread on something the celebrities want them to write – gets their hands on the juiciest story in entertainment history, and publish it. How would people react? Would they doubt its truth, and question the magazine’s credibility? Or would they praise them for coming out of their cocoon and reporting on something out of their realm? And what if the National Enquirer, a digest magazine with so many bogus claims in the past — landed themselves that same story — and published it? Certainly a story of that magnitude in an entertainment source that has a history of publishing such stories of false outcome would go unnoticed. It would be like Peter and the Wolf, with the Enquirer being Peter, crying out the same stories over and over again, at first to peril of the rest of the world, and then to their annoyance. And once Peter called it out one last time, this time for real, would the world take any notice?

And what if the hailed New York Times got that exclusive story and published it? In truth, everyone would believe it. Few would question its credibility, for this is the New York times, arguably the greatest assortment of press that has ever joined forces to make a newspaper! Even though many times before it has been wrong, made mistakes, and even tied the wrong ends, a story of this size and alleged importance must be true – especially from a source as large as this.

And what if that story was wrong?

What if Hello magazine, the National Enquirer, and the hailed New York Times just made it up? How would we know? The answer: it would be impossible. We, the general public, have no power compared to them – their higher class, credentials, reporters, leaders and owners no doubt know so much more about everything that all we are left to do is guess, pick and choose. And that is why blogging is the future. We can change this. No one would stand in our way. And now, with computers on our side, it’s the public against the press. And unless the press has enough sense to change their ways, we will occupy the throne of truth, and they will be merely a thing of the past.

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I’m sure this will cause a few mixed feelings, so feel free to put your opinions into comments, and I’ll try to respond to everybody. Thanks for reading. 

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