Monday, June 13, 2005

Musings about the Media

I've been talking to several people lately and have heard very different extremes. For instance, some people think that the "liberal" media is to blame for a lot of the problems now. Then, on the opposite side, a simular number of people think the "conservitive media" is in the pocket of the White House and simply does what they are told.

So it got me thinking, who's right?

I think I've come up with a partial answer to that question. It strikes at the core idea of what all the press is about these days: selling advertisements.

Thats the core today. Selling ads. Getting revenue.

Annoy the President? Piss of the White House? You are likely to be cut off from the hot leads coming out of Washington. Definately doesn't get you attention as a news source.

Run "human interest" stories? Ala... the pretty white girl who gets killed in the next location. Some weird-o celeb does something nasty. These things get attention... Especially to middle-aged white females who, studies have shown spend the bulk of the money advertized in these kinds of shows.

So... Where was any talk of what the occupation of Iraq was going to be like before the invasion? Any talk of actually looking into the dirty pool that is Congress? Any real reports beyond a sound blirb when someone DIES IN OUR NAME? ... sigh ... Despite what it may seem, each death -- on each side -- is a tradegy to someone. Each life is important. It is also newsworthy.

Celeb news is another big news item for lots of places. Really, I have enough problems in my life without needing to wrap myself around other people's problems too. Maybe thats why I don't like "reality tv" either.

So, where do I get my news? Usually the BBC.

In the end, I do believe in the freedom of the press. Clearly we need a press that is free from Governmental oversight. Beyond that, hopefully on its own, the seperation between News and Advertising will happen again.

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