RE: reputable sources and "bias"...

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by blackfox, Aug 5, 2004.

  1. blackfox macrumors 65816


    Feb 18, 2003
    Now this may be a horrible decision on my part, but considering that much talk has been centered on "bias" with news sources, I thought I'd put a thread out to attempt to somewhat clarify this issue, although resolution seems impobable.

    Leo, I do not mean to single you out, but it is your vocal expressions of "unfairness" that have played a large part in the creation of this thread. So I ask you, Leo (and other conservatives who may feel that they are being treated unfairly) to explain in clear, concise and verifiable terms what sources they consider "Liberal" and why, as well as to the relation (if any) to whether it is "reputable". Please explain standards for judgement. To those on the left, I ask the same in reverse.

    I know this will further tax the patience of some who have tried to explain the difference between "bias" and "reputable" as pertaining to the standards of journalism, and regardless, I would ask everyone to take the above sentence into account while they formulate (any) responses...

    I feel somewhat cheapened to even have to open a thread to address this issue, but I just want it to be over...I am going out for the evening and will contribute my thoughts sometime later.

    PLEASE try to make this a substantive, respectable debate. Thankyou.
  2. zimv20 macrumors 601


    Jul 18, 2002
    let's look at print journalism

    maybe we can use a respected award like the Pulitzer to shed some light on journalist values in the print media, which is my favorite kind of source. let's survey some recent Pulitzer finalists and winners (list not complete)...

    Breaking News Reporting
    finalists: Miami Herald, Baltimore Sun, Seattle Times, New York Times, LA Times
    winners: Staff of Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald Staff, Staff of Wall Street Journal

    Explanatory Reporting
    finalists: Erika Niedowski of Baltimore Sun, David Finkel of Washington Post, New York Times Staff, Louise Kiernan of Chicago Tribune, Michael Winerip of New York Times, Tom Brune of Seattle Times
    winners: Chicago Tribune Staff, New York Times Staff, Staff of Wall Street Journal

    finalists: Nicholas Kristof of New York Times, Nat Hentoff of Village Voice, Derrick Z. Jackson of Boston Globe, Colbert I. King of Washington Post, Tony Kornheiser of Washington Post
    winners: Leonard Pitts Jr. of Miami Herald, Colbert I. King of Washington Post, Thomas Friedman of New York Times, Paul A. Gigot of Wall Street Journal

    Investigative Reporting
    finalists: David Barstow and Lowell Bergman of New York Times, David Ottaway and Joe Stephens of Washington Post, Alan Miller and Kevin Sack of Los Angeles Times, Staff of Seattle Times
    winners: Clifford J. Levy of New York Times, Sari Horwitz, Scott Higham and Sarah Cohen of Washington Post, David Willman of Los Angeles Times, Staff of Miami Herald

    there's a short survey. i've not included all, but all these nominations and winners are from '97-'04 (w/ more weight given to more recent years).

    lots of NY Times and Wash Post, followed by LA Times, WSJ and the Miami Herald. A good showing by Seattle Times, as well. appearing more than once (though maybe not in my condensed list) are Baltimore Sun, San Jose Mercury News and Toledo Blade.

    didn't see any Newsmax or Frontpagemag (do they even have print editions?).

    all of this, of course, can be found at the Pulitzer site. now, who wants to have a go at TV news?

    i'd like to clarify a difference between a Finalist and a Winner. if someone or an organization is listed as a Finalist, it means they didn't win for that particular year. so if the staff of the New York Times shows up as both a Finalist and a Winner in the same category, you can assume those are from two different years.
  3. pseudobrit macrumors 68040


    Jul 23, 2002
    Jobs' Spare Liver Jar
    I'll have ago at TV...

    Peabody awards:


    NBC News MacNeil/Lehrer Productions, presented on PBS,

    Christian Frei Filmproductions, HBO/Cinemax Deocumentary Films, Swiss National Television, Suisseimage, presented on HBO,

    NOVA/WGBH and Channel 4, presented on PBS

    P.O.V./ American Documentary Inc., in ass. w/ Indepndent Television Services, Zula Pearl Films and National Black Programming Consortioum, presented on PBS (2 awards)

    ZDF German TV in ass. w/ Irish Film Board

    WEKU-FM, Down to Earth Productions

    Weijun Chen, HBO/Cinemax Documentary Films, TV2 Denmark, BBC, presented on Cinemax

    Viacom/MTV and the Kaiser Family Foundation



    WGBH/Frontline, The New York Times and Canadian Broadcasting Corp., presented on PBS

    Thirteen/WNET, presented on PBS

    KSJN-FM/Minnesota Public Radio

    TV Asahi Crop.


    Atlantic Public Media


    MTV Networks/Nickelodeon


    BBC America



    American Experience/WGBH, presented on PBS

    University of Memphis, Tenn., presented on the Arkansas Educational Telecommunications Network

    Bill Moyers won the independent award.

    Hmm... no awards for any groundbreaking pieces from Fox... let me go back a few years... ah, yes, FOX has won four Peabody Awards. All of them network sitcom or drama shows.

    Now onto Murrow awards:

    Continuing Coverage: NBC Nightly News, David Bloom Reports on the War in Iraq (NBC and MSNBC)
    Feature Reporting: ESPN, ESPN Sportscenter: Picking Up Butch
    Investigative Reporting: Dateline NBC, Do No Harm - Sulzer Hip Implants
    News Documentary: ABC News, Peter Jennings Reporting: The Kennedy Assassination: Beyond Conspiracy
    News Series: Univision, Mis Padres, Mis Verdugos (My Parents, My Tormentors)
    Newscast: ABC News, World News Tonight
    Overall Excellence: CBS News
    Sports Reporting: ESPN, ESPN Sportscenter: Picking Up Butch
    Spot News Coverage: CBS Evening News, First Day of War
    Videography: Univision, En Busca de Un Milagro (In Search of a Miracle)
    Website: MSNBC,
    Writing: CBS News, Everybody Has A Story

    and in 2002:

    Overall Excellence: NBC News
    Newscast: NBC News, NBC Nightly News With Tom Brokaw
    Spot News Coverage: Dateline NBC, New York Under Siege
    Continuing Coverage: CNN, Sept. 11, 2001 - Terrorist Attacks
    Investigative Reporting: CBS News, 60 Minutes II, Merchants of Mass Destruction
    Feature Reporting: CBS News, Sunday Morning, 32 Across…
    Sports Reporting: NBC News, Today, Legless Wrestler/Determined Wrestler
    News Series: Dateline NBC, The Roots of Rage
    News Documentary: CNN, Beneath the Veil
    Videography: Dateline NBC, Silver Lining
    Writing: CBS Evening News With Dan Rather, Everybody Has a Story
    Web Site: MSNBC,

    Here is the Emmy award nomination breakdown: (this year/last year)

    PBS: 24/31
    ABC: 20/18
    CBS: 19/19
    Cinemax: 12/3
    History Channel: 11/4
    NBC: 11/18
    MSNBC: 9/13
    Discovery Channel: 4/5
    CNN: 3/6
    CNBC: 2/1
    TLC: 2/3
    A&E: 1/1
    CMT: 1/0
    Univision: 1/0
    National Geographic Channel: 0/2
    Sundance Channel: 0/2
    Animal Planet: 0/1
    Discovery Health: 0/1
    FOX: 0/2

    Fox's entries last year were for local stations (Fox 5 News and Fox 25 News at 10), not FOX News. For comparison, most other networks were nominated for their regular news shows. Fox broadcast stations do not carry national news programmes. Neither Fox entry won an award.
  4. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2004
    I don't have time to delve into this now, however I'd like to point out one little thing. Print media is the past, it won't be long until it goes the way of the dinosaur. Internet only media is the wave of the future, even TV media as we know it will blow away in the wind. Eventually the technologies will merge to the point where tv/news/phone/internet/whatever will be all in one package. This won't happen without pioneers like Newsmax or Frontpagemag leading the way. Oh wait, I just remembered, they both have hardcopy monthly magazines, but that is beside the point even those will be gone.

    Generally I believe the left wing has had a monopoly on both print and news media. They also have a monopoly on those agencies who passes out awards to those same entities. Now with cable, and the internet, their monopoly is going to come crashing down. pennyless nobodies could potential actually compete for market share versus the behemoths that have monopolized it for so long, with the help of the internet. Democrats aren't members of the progressive party for progress is going to even the playing field and leave them in the dust. Until they remake themselves, their original philosophies and tenants are still very viable if they would just simply stick to it and leave the rest of their unethical crap behind.
  5. zimv20 macrumors 601


    Jul 18, 2002
    i see that NPR has won 39 Peabody Awards, among others.
  6. pseudobrit macrumors 68040


    Jul 23, 2002
    Jobs' Spare Liver Jar
    Really? Newspapers are still as profitable as ever. Why aren't they going out of business?

    Pioneers? They're johnny-come-lately's at best, at worst, just hack propaganda machines. They're about as reputable as the Weekly World News. Anyone with an open, objective, logical and empathetic mind can see the extreme bias presented by these sites.

    You don't see me or anyone else citing CommonDreams, People's Weekly World, truthout, Mother Jones, Air America Radio, DemocraticUnderground or, do you? Know why?

    Because we know they're not always as reputable as a source needs to be to build an argument on.

    Great cyclical argument. We can't judge the "liberal media" by the awards of the journalism community because they're given out by "fellow liberals."

    There's obviously to be no reasoning with you.

    Your argument is only as good as your facts.
    Your facts are only as good as your source.
    Your source is only as good as its record and reputation.

    You don't build a house of 100 rooms on a questionable foundation.
  7. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2004
    yup, and its about time someone started giving us the other side of the story instead of the monopoly that has been going on way too long now.

    Example, all these news sources get on reporting sprees on how people are dieing by handguns. They are anti-gun biased ie liberal. They ignore perfectly good stories where someone protected themselves with a gun because that doesn't fit in with their agenda.
  8. SuperChuck macrumors 6502


    Nov 15, 2003
    Chucktown, SC
    I don't think there is a question that some media outlets tend to be more liberal, while others tend to be more conservative. What people fail to see is that the majority of the media generally works very hard at presenting the news in an unbiased manner - so much so that the news they report is distorted by their burning desire to look nonpartisan.

    Take, for example, the war on terrorism:

    Whenever George W. Bush says "they want to destroy us because they hate our freedom," none of the anchors have the guts to come out and say it's a bunch of hogwash.

    If they were not so afraid of looking partisan, they might suggest that the real reason the terrorists hate us is because:

    1. We support the House of Saud, which is a corrupt, totalitarian regime that reaps massive wealth while their people go hungry.
    2. We show unabashed favoritism towards Israel in their struggle with Palestinians.
    3. We have military bases on lands considered holy by the people of the Muslim faith.
    4. We funded Osama bin Laden's guerilla war against the USSR when they occupied Afghanistan, then refused to assist them in returning order to the country after they were successful.

    I could go on, but I think you get the idea. Of course, "they hate us because of our freedom" has a better ring to it, but at some point, you would think the media would get around to letting us know about the truth.

    I don't have a problem with a little media bias. What I have a problem with is a media that has become so afraid of appearing biased that they ignore the truth.
  9. SuperChuck macrumors 6502


    Nov 15, 2003
    Chucktown, SC
    "A gun kept in the home is 4

    times more likely to be involved in an unintentional

    shooting, 7 times more likely to be used in a crimi-

    nal assault or homicide, and 11 times more likely

    to be used to commit or attempt suicide, than to

    be used in self-defense."

    1998 Journal of Trauma
    (An annual report of trauma published by and for the medical community)

    That might be one reason why, Leo. Not because they are biased, but because they are reporting the facts. Also, somebody scaring away a burglar with a gun is less of a news item than scores of kids getting killed by bullets purchased by 16 year olds at K-Mart.


    My father was killed by a gun when I was 10.
  10. zimv20 macrumors 601


    Jul 18, 2002
    i'm sorry to hear that
  11. Neserk macrumors 6502a


    Jan 1, 2004
    For what it is worth...

    ... everything is biased. Bias isn't necessarily left or right politically speaking, although it can be. (Obviously).

    As humans we are always biased, it is part of being human.

    The best way to deal with bias is to acknowledge it and at least allow both sides (or all 99 sides) present their point of view. Fox can be biased, so long as people are also watching station X which shows the opposite side. The problem is when someone just watches Fox or just watches station X. The other problem is when the person doesn't critically examine the news and recognize the bias.
  12. pseudobrit macrumors 68040


    Jul 23, 2002
    Jobs' Spare Liver Jar
    I disagree. As long as the all the pertinent facts are accurately laid out, it won't matter what light they are cast in as long as the audience is responsible and intelligent.
    If they don't think, then the spin becomes the truth, because they are unwilling or unable to separate the two.
    This is why I hate "news shows" where two pundits of opposing views are set up in a satellite slap-fight.
    These shows are spin rich and fact poor, and rarely moderated professionally, which makes them all but worthless for news. They don't belong on any responsible news source's lineup.

  13. takao macrumors 68040


    Dec 25, 2003
    Dornbirn (Austria)
    i think at the moment that every us news is a little bit flawed because of the oncoming election

    here the newspapers don't have a problem with agreeing on issues
    best example at the moment is the US election or fahrenheit 911 :
    every news conservative and liberal criticize the election being "too much show" "the electorial vote system", "kerry for not having a clear opinion about iraq" ,"bush for the obvious reasons" ,"fear of terror being used as political tool"
    yesterday all the reports about fahrenheit hit the news-papers: through all papers: "superficially","no better than US-governmental propaganda","too few (new) facts","sometimes badly researched", "too much editing" but also "amusing and entertaining" "interesting because of the way how films can edited for political messages", "worth watching", "shows more political insight into US politics and problems with politics"

    through all papers the same

    oh and of course the newspapers find it very amusing how many attack moore for calling it a "documentary", because every documentary holds opinion

    and yeah FOX is getting 'bad words' from all sides as well, for their completly on sided news coverage

    edit: yeah and that "left wing conspiracy" theory is getting old ..i guess around 80 years ... but haven heard about it in a while
  14. mouchoir macrumors 6502a

    Apr 29, 2004
    London, UK
    Talking of monopolies, I can't remember hearing that Rupert M is liberal?
  15. Desertrat macrumors newbie

    Jul 4, 2003
    Terlingua, Texas
    I tend to judge bias by how certain phrases slant articles. I see much writing that indicates the writer is rather statist in his views. For example, when some lowering of taxes is reported, there will be some comment along the lines of, "It will COST the government..." Now, a cost is what is paid out. Foregone income is not a cost. The writing is a view that for whatever reason government has some right to taxes. I've seen the same sort of writing when the State of Florida was considering raising (and imposing new) licensing fees for occupations.

    To me, this sort of thing is indicative of one's inherent worldview, and is in no way deliberately pro-government.

    Another area has to do with guns. For instance, where is it ever reported as to how many times a non-LEO has stopped a violent situation with his own firearm? That's occurred twice in school-violence cases but wasn't reported. From the reports of the FedGov folks, and from such studies as Kleck's, we know that more people use firearms to end some violence than to institute it. But, that's not reported. As a generality, an anti-gun view is a liberal view.

    I don't doubt the veracity of reports of events happening. I rarely accept the judgements of the reporters as to "the deep meaning" of events until a while later, however.

    We have no way of knowing what stories are spiked due to inherent bias concerning the relative importance of that news. what might be important to a liberal might be unimportant to a conservative and vice versa, but we'll never know how bias affects any specific selection of stories...

  16. mischief macrumors 68030


    Aug 1, 2001
    Santa Cruz Ca
    I will reply as I have previously.

    News is a product. Facts are the raw materials and Spin the packaging.

    Market forces determine what products survive and thrive.

    It is then reasonable to assume that in the long term, the media sources that survive the longest, with the greatest readership and quotation by other publications are those which are most trusted and respected. Generally in such a situation it can be logically assumed also that these same agencies present the most solid facts with minimal spin.

    It can further be assumed that those who actually consume News have (via the laws of economics) created a field of News sources that reflect the spin and view they prefer to get their facts about the world from.

    IE: If the most successful and widely published News sources are, indeed Liberal Biased it only stands to reason that the vast majority of News-consuming Americans are similarly Liberal-Biased.


    Care to actually respond to this line of logic this time Leo?
  17. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2004
    If everybody jumped off of a cliff ... :p
  18. mischief macrumors 68030


    Aug 1, 2001
    Santa Cruz Ca
    Can't.... Use... Sarcasm.... AAARRGGGGHH!!!!!!

    You'd be just as deluded, lonely and unlikely to breed as you are right now.

    To the mods: I'll take what's coming to me.... I just had to... :eek: :( :p
  19. Chane macrumors newbie

    Jul 30, 2004

    I completely argree with this statement.

    In response to Pseudobrit's response: I agree that one station would be enough if it were to present all the facts available, even if there were spin. However, I hesitate to believe that the station that I happen to be watching will do that. It may be safer to take the time to watch/read different sources.

    For what it's worth, it seems to me that most of the news that I read tends to shed light on topics in similar ways. I don't know if this should be considered a "liberal" point of view, but I admit that when I do hear a stereotypically conservative POV (e.g. FOX NEWS) the angle that I get is sometimes quite different. It's that difference that's important as a news consumer. Perhaps that's why I still bother to watch FOX NEWS.

    Perhaps I'll find some examples.
  20. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    Please do. I'd like to better understand the value some place on deliberately biased reporting.
  21. amnesiac1984 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 9, 2002

    but also good point. leo that really isn't a suitable counter argument. Are you suggesting that the american public are falling off a proverbial left wing cliff? I think the opposite is true, especially from an international perspective in relation to the rest of the world.
  22. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2004
    That is why we are the only super power left in it?
    Maybe we are doing something right and instead of dragging us down to their level through the democrats, they should try to duplicate our accomplishments and join us as a superpower in their own right?
  23. mischief macrumors 68030


    Aug 1, 2001
    Santa Cruz Ca
    What a bizarre arguement.

    The USSR failed because they were never a viable economic power. Communism was a system concieved with a fully industrialized and economically agressive country in mind. The only countries that actually became pseudo-Marxist were poor, agrarian countries with little or no economic power relative to their size.

    The current movement towards responsible social programs has nothing to do with the economic model of Marxism and everything to do with compassionate governance.

    Read Marx, Read the history of China, the Bosheviks, Cuba and the lifecycle of Republican Communism before you go comparing it to western free market Capitalism.

    The Communist model failed due to it's economic isolation, not due to American superiority. Without trade with much of the world and two dozen or socontributing Capitalist (and Socialist-Democratic) allies the US would have failed too.
  24. mischief macrumors 68030


    Aug 1, 2001
    Santa Cruz Ca
    And to think.... I actually did the responsible thing and reported myself over that one. :rolleyes:

    Thanx BTW. ;) :)
  25. 3rdpath macrumors 68000


    Jan 7, 2002
    2nd star on the right and straight till morning
    for someone who doesn't have time to rspond... you've responded with multiple posts that fail to actually answer the original questions of this thread.

    you have time for generalizations and "facts" such as the demise of the printed media(which is FAR from true)...yet you can't articulate what constitutes your vast "left wing conspiracy" of the media. heck, even the awards given to the media are biased in your view.

    without substatiation of your charges you come across as someone who has crossed the border into the land of paranoia.

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