The news media. Guardians of truth? Or politicized hacks? September 1 2019

The news media. Guardians of truth? Or politicized hacks? September 1 2019

Community Events

Updated on Aug 18, 2019

The news media. Guardians of truth? Or politicized hacks?

What The news media. Guardians of truth? Or politicized hacks?
When Sunday, September 1, 2019
03:00 PM to 05:00 PM
By Intellectual Discussions -a Burke-Paine Society affiliate
Where The Beer Shoppe
44 Greenfield Ave
How to find us we like sofas
Located in ARDMORE, PA

The news media plays a vital role in our democracy. It educates voters and checks the excesses of our government. No leader is immune from its oversight, and the press has often forced America to face and correct injustice.

But lately, the news media seems less than up to the task. They get big stories wrong with frequency, and they often ignore the issues that concern many Americans.

Reporters often seem to be manipulated by powerful politicians. Here is Ben Rhodes, President Obama's speechwriter:

“All these newspapers used to have foreign bureaus. Now they don’t. They call us to explain to them what’s happening in Moscow and Cairo. Most of the outlets are reporting on world events from Washington. The average reporter we talk to is 27 years old, and their only reporting experience consists of being around political campaigns. That’s a sea change. They literally know nothing."

The internet and the 24-hour-a-day news cycle have been a disaster for traditional media. The internet has destroyed newspapers by allowing a universe of information sources - some dubious - to proliferate, choking out local journalism and media.

The news networks confront the daunting task of keeping their news fresh, which often means repeating stories that "people are talking about:" sometimes little more than unverified rumors or dumb tweets.

Style and ratings seem more important than nuance and substance.

In its endless quest for eyeballs, the media has abandoned the constraints of traditional journalism.

Breaking news now leaks from "unnamed high-level sources, " and rehashed reporting from shoddy websites and unvetted sources ("Buzzfeed is reporting...") is common. Opinion spills into straight news reporting with distressing regularity.

These practices have slammed media's most precious asset: its credibility.

Only 14% (!) of Republicans consider the news media reliable, and they are joined by half of all Democrats.

Overall, a scant 32% of Americans trust the news media, a record low (In 1976, that number was 76%).

If that level sinks further, the news media might sink below Congress as the least-trusted institution in America.

What can the media do to recover its credibility?

I will moderate this discussion.

My goal is NEVER to censor anyone’s opinion.

I will try to:

1. Keep the discussion from degenerating into heated arguments and nastiness. People use insults when they have run out of ideas.

2. Verify factual claims (I will bring a computer). If you have a "fact" that another member challenges, it would be helpful if you have a reference.

3. Steer the discussion toward quieter members. Nobody wants to watch a "tennis match" between two excited people.

I intend for these discussions to be cordial.

Please do not attend if you can’t leave your politics aside long enough to make a few friends over drinks.

John Rogers

Join this Meetup

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