Posts tagged ‘Journalism’

Katie Couric Comes Out …

About her feelings for Hillary Clinton.

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Let the backlash begin. Surprisingly (to me, at least), Keith Olbermann is the lead-off lambaster. She’s his “Worst Person in the World,” ranking right up there with Rupert Mudoch. Take that tongue lashing, you Feminazi Couric!

In other news, “Katie Tarts It Up” — “it” is the news, or so goes the debate. Can Couric redeem CBS where Dan Rather presumably failed? Of course, note the gender card the dudes are pulling, especially by characterizing Couric’s news stories as “soft” …

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And a quick excerpt below from this month’s Curve Magazine — “Why Do They Hate Us?  How the media treats Hillary is indicative of how the world sees women:  as second-class citizens” by Victoria A. Brownworth (wish I could re-type the whole thing! Here’s a note about the article though, if you don’t buy the magazine):

After covering Obama’s speech about race in Philadelphia, I wrote a newspaper column discussing why we still can’t talk about gender in the United States. The reasons are manifold and scary to contemplate. In the United States the statistics speak for themselves: One in six women will be raped in her lifetime. One in four has survived child sexual abuse or an incestuous relationship with a male relative. One in three has been the victim of domestic violence. Over 1.2 million women are forcibly raped by an ex-husband or ex-boyfriend each year. The leading cause of death among pregnant women is murder by a spouse or boyfriend. Four out of every five female murder victims in the United States were killed by men they knew: a spouse, a boyfriend, a male relative, a co-worker.

This means millions of American men — men we know, men we may love or have loved — hate us enough to rape, maim or kill us. Millions. It’s a difficult reality to face: Women and girls are so hated that our lives and bodies mean nothing to these men.

Perhaps that reality and the inchoate knowledge of it is why it was easy for people to refer to Clinton with the vilest of hate speech and feel no remorse and receive no recrimination from either the general populace or the media. GOP organizer and conservative pundit Roger Stone even started an ant-Clinton 527: Citizens United Not Timid, or C.U.N.T. He appeared on talk shows, including Tucker on MSNBC, talking about his group. Stone said he’d thought a long time about a name that would be uniquely suited to Clinton and said his group is “dedicated to educating the public about what Hillary really is.”

Note the pronoun: “what,” not “who.” In Stone’s description, Hillary is a cunt. Not a presidential candidate, a senator or even just a woman. A cunt.

–From Curve (July/August 2008)

July 24, 2008 at 8:07 pm Leave a comment

In-Depth Analysis of Journalistic Integrity

IndyMedia analyzes how the corporate media, assumed to be “objective”, spins a basic student protest over a visit by George W. Bush into a “violent, angry, confrontational, irresponsible, chaotic, anonymous, difficult, rowdy crowd,” etc etc. The raw footage reveals a very different story than the edited, corporate media version (via KATU).

For example, the protesters are falsely accused of “endangering the reporter” so that the cameras can cut away, rather than allow the protesters’ message to be heard through a live feed on television. The reporter is never in danger, and the only volatile “event” to be documented is the message being chanted repeatedly by the crowd, which is comprised of children, adults, and the elderly — no one is in danger until a homophobic Bush supporter enters the chanting crowd to punch an openly gay man. The police don’t prevent this hate crime; one of the “anarchic” protesters stops and diffuses it. And that’s just one tactic the corporate media uses to “radicalize” dissenting voices and render them “anarchic” or too irrational to be heard — these voices express anti-capitalistic sentiments, and in essence, condemn corporate media for selling out their principles and integrity and promoting capitalistic values.

Out the window goes journalism principle number 5:

It must serve as an independent monitor of power

Journalism has an unusual capacity to serve as watchdog over those whose power and position most affect citizens. The Founders recognized this to be a rampart against despotism when they ensured an independent press; courts have affirmed it; citizens rely on it. As journalists, we have an obligation to protect this watchdog freedom by not demeaning it in frivolous use or exploiting it for commercial gain.

Enjoy!

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July 15, 2008 at 7:06 pm 12 comments

Hard News Vs. Soft News

Taken from Media Awareness Network:

Hard News Vs. Soft News

News stories are basically divided into two types: hard news and soft news. Hard new generally refers to up-to-the-minute news and events that are reported immediately, while soft news is background information or human-interest stories.

Politics, war, economics and crime used to be considered hard news, while arts, entertainment and lifestyles were considered soft news.

But increasingly, the lines are beginning to blur. Is a story about the private life of a politician “politics” or “entertainment”? Is an article about the importance of investing early for retirement a “business” story or a “lifestyle” story? Judging solely on subject matter, it can be difficult to tell.

One difference between hard and soft news is the tone of presentation. A hard news story takes a factual approach: What happened? Who was involved? Where and when did it happen? Why?

A soft news story tries instead to entertain or advise the reader. You may have come across newspaper or TV stories that promise “news you can use.” Examples might be tips on how to stretch properly before exercising, or what to look for when buying a new computer.

Knowing the difference between hard and soft news helps you develop a sense of how news is covered, and what sorts of stories different news media tend to publish or broadcast. This can be important when you want to write articles or influence the media yourself.

© 2008 Media Awareness Network

July 15, 2008 at 2:57 am 6 comments


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