Thursday, September 07, 2006

When the Media ignores the news

I was over at MSN.com when I saw an important news story: "Iraq to take control of military in 'gigantic' step":
"Iraq will take control of its armed forces command on Thursday, a major step on its painful path toward independence and an essential move before international troops can eventually withdraw."


This is a monstrously huge story, and welcome news to those on the Right who want Iraq to succeed, and those on the Left who want the U.S. out of Iraq. This should be front page news. So where is the Media on this?

The big stories on FoxNews.com: "Bush: 'Terrorists
Are Still Active'14 suspects to be transferred from secret CIA prisons", "A Major League No-No/Florida Marlins rookie pitcher Anibal Sanchez throws first no-hitter in Major League Baseball in two years", and "TiVo Football Fantasy/Digital video recorder maker introduces first interactive television service for fantasy football players". Fox News did not ignore the Iraq story completely. It is over in their "Latest News Headlines" section, underneath a story "Explosions Kill 18 in Iraq".

How about CNN.com? The big story is "Blair to unveil departure date". You won't even find the story on the front page, if it is on CNN.com at all. I could not find it.

The truly insulting part about CNN.com's coverage was the fact they had a news alert at the top of the page: "Police in Los Angeles say Paris Hilton has been arrested in Hollywood for investigation of driving under the influence, according to The Associated Press." This is more important than Iraq taking over its own military? CNN should be ashamed of itself. They promote tabloid trash while important news gets ignored?

CBS News? Aside from having one of the most annoyingly busy website layouts, I could not find the story there either. Their big story was Katie Couric interviewing President Bush. The CBS News motto should be "All Katie, all the time".

At least ABC News had the Iraq story listed at the top of its "Top Headlines" section.

Ironically, MSNBC.com's front news web page had the story buried at the bottom of the "World News" stories, near the bottom of its long scroll down page.

This Iraq story is where we leave the realm of bias, and enter the territory of inept website editing priorities, with the exception of CNN and CBS, who completely missed the story. Although it is clear that CNN and CBS are showing some kind of weird bias against the story, although I hesitate to call it a liberal bias. Could it just be plain simple ignorance? Or maybe they just dropped the ball on this story?

11 comments:

William R. Barker said...

I'm not sure how much or how little media bias has to do with the dearth of coverage, but there's no doubt an institutional bias against "complicated" stories and in favor of covering crap like the Paris Hilton arrest.

To "cross-blog" a bit, I posted earlier on Ragged Thots (a blog both Ed and I are big fans of) my semi-amazement/semi-disgust about the lack of coverage of the Armitage/Powell revelations.

The owner of Ragged Thots is conservative-Republican Robert A. George. Unless he's posted something within the last hour or so, Mr. George apparently has no interest in either the Armitage/Powell story OR the "Iraqi to take control of military in gigantic step" story.

So what drives the media? Damned if I know. Now I'll happily blog about Iraq... Cheesesteaks... Frank Sinatra... Social Security...

(*GRIN*)

In other words... I'm certainly not a one note pony. HOWEVER... I'm constantly struck by how many news stories I read via Drudge or other sources that just seem to die on the vine of the MSM... and even the blogosphere.

Good post, Ed.

BILL

William R. Barker said...

Ed,

I just got done watching the CBS Evening News with Cutie Katie. (*SMILE*) No mention of the turnover of major military responsibility to the Iraqi Army, but there WAS a segment on how even retired Marines are growing so tired of Bush and the Republicans that they're going to be voting Democrat in November.

(*SMIRK*)

Now here's what's frustrating... for me at least. As you know, I'm so frigg'n frustrated with Bush and the Republicans that I switched my Party id to Democrat this Winter and I refuse to vote to re-elect my RINO Congresswoman come November.

THAT SAID... (*SMIRK*)... I've also made clear ALL my disagreements and fears concerning the Democrats and given Bush and the Republicans credit where credit is due. NOW... if *I* were the anchor of a straight NEWS program such NUANCE and CLARIFICATION would be par for the course of every broadcast.

Tonight... Katie and CBS made it absolutely clear to me that the same old "Rather-like" liberal bias is still in the driver's seat at CBS news.

BILL

EdMcGon said...

Bill,
In Robert's defense, he doesn't post on every story. But he also gives his regulars an open thread to do exactly what they want.

As for tv news broadcasts, I abhor them. I prefer getting my news from the internet. But as my post demonstrates, even that is subject to the same bias/stupidity that runs rampant in tv news broadcasts.

William R. Barker said...

Ed... if I may... (*GRIN*)... there's no need for you to "defend" Robert for the simple reason that Robert wasn't "attacked."

If you'll allow me to play pseudo-shrink for a moment... you (and many people in fact, Robert included) tend to equate the neutral connotation word "critique" with negative connotation word "CRITICISM."

Yes... Robert's blog is "personal." Yes... Robert posts wearing many hats - including stand up comic, political commentator, and comic book afficiando (sp?)... but in REAL LIFE one of Robert's hats is JOURNALIST/EDITOR/COLUMNIST for the New York Post and former "politico." (*SMILE*)

There's nothing wrong... nothing "confrontational"... about pondering Robert A. George THE JOURNALIST/FORMER POLITICO ignoring certain stories on his "personal" blog.

Basically, Ed... your "Part 2" thread picks up on BOTH my posts made on your "Part 1" thread. (*SMILE*)

With respect... (*WINK*)... THINK about what I've written here before replying. If you disagree... you disagree. But try to look at it through my eyes. (*SMILE*)

BILL

EdMcGon said...

Bill,
You and I basically agree on the subject.

My point about Robert is that you cannot hold a personal blog to the same standards of a news website, unless the blog is trying to be a news website.

You stated: "Unless he's posted something within the last hour or so, Mr. George apparently has no interest in either the Armitage/Powell story OR the "Iraqi to take control of military in gigantic step" story."

This infers that Robert has some sort of responsibility to post on every single news story he finds interesting.

There are plenty of news stories I read that I don't post about for a multitude of reasons. That does NOT mean they don't interest me.

To reiterate, my point is not about your comments in regards to the Media. We agree.

My point is to hold Robert's blog as some kind of example of liberal bias in the Media is a misinterpretation of why he blogs.

William R. Barker said...

Ed...??? (*SCRATCHING MY HEAD*)... exactly whom do you feel is pointing to Robert's blog as an example of liberal bias???

And jeez... given the generally low level of "standards" adhered to by much of the media... the LAST thing I'd expect Robert to do is follow the lead of CBS and crew. (*SMILE*) No... I hold Robert - and everyone to tell you the truth - only to the same "standards" I hold myself. (*SMILE*)

I didn't "infer" (well... first of all I rarely "infer" - I basically "say" or "don't say.") that Robert has some sort of responsibility to post on every single news story he finds interesting... (*GRIN*)... but I did - and continue to - point out that Robert DID ignore the Armitage/Powell revolations while if you remember he wasn't shy about piling on Rove back when that was the flavor of the moment. (*SMIRK*)

Listen... I *LIKE* Robert! I *LIKE* his website. But never forget, Ed... Robert A. George is the kind of guy who could STOMACH working for the RNC. (*SMILE*) He's the kind of guy who can abide AIP. (*GRIN*)

I'm glad you agree with me about the media - such agreement reinforces my confidence in my own opinion - but for whatever reason you just can't seem to take my words at face value concerning Robert. Ed... I say what I mean and I mean what I say. It's really that simple. No need to "infer," "assume," or "read into."

With Bill... what you see (read!) is what you get.

BILL

William R. Barker said...

* BTW, ED...

I assume Robert checks in here at Politics and Pigskins every once in awhile. (*SMILE*)

I just want to make it clear that I'd NEVER talk about someone behind their back in the sense that I wouldn't say it to their face and that if Robert ever wants to "counter" my opinions here or on his own website that's always his option.

** BTW Part 2...

Like you, I'm giving AIP no more leeway to get away with his/her crap unchallenged. For you... it was when "she" (???) started dissing your blog. With me... just as I'm not going to tolerate being referred to as a "DB," I'm not going to tolerate having my wife brought in to our discussion by anyone other than me unless it's good-natured and respectful.

I really hope that you (and Moose!) come to the same conclusion that I have that if Robert isn't gonna step in when AIP crosses the line... we've gotta take action ourselves.

BILL

EdMcGon said...

Bill,
Your repeated point about robert ignoring stories on his blog indicates , using your own word, that he was ignoring an issue. Why mention that at all unless you had a point to make?

If your point is that Robert may have a liberal bias, that can be argued, as your point about Rove also demonstrates.

I am NOT saying that you are putting Robert down.

William R. Barker said...

Ed writes...

"Your repeated point about Robert ignoring stories on his blog indicates, using your own word, that he was ignoring an issue. Why mention that at all unless you had a point to make?"

Ed... have you RE-READ your original post on this thread lately???

Ed (that's YOU!) (*SMILE*) wrote...

"This is a monstrously huge story..."

I (that's ME, Ed) (*WINK*) AGREED with you.

YOU continued: "This should be front page news. So where is the Media on this?"

YOU continued: "This Iraq story is where we leave the realm of bias, and enter the territory of inept website editing priorities..."

YOU contined: "Although it is clear that CNN and CBS are showing some kind of weird bias against the story, although I hesitate to call it a liberal bias. Could it just be plain simple ignorance? Or maybe they just dropped the ball on this story?"

Now, Ed... re-read all the points I made. (*SMILE*) The points you seemingly agree with. (*GRIN*)

"Why" mention Robert? Well... because YOU mentioned "websites." Your SPECIFIC comment was on "inept website editing priorities." (*SMILE*)

"Why mention Robert? Because ROBERT... who is a member of the MEDIA... has a WEBSITE... that we both regularly read and post on. (*SMILE*) Again, Ed... (*SHAKING MY HEAD*)... if you bother to re-read my initial post you'll see that my second paragraph starts... "To cross-blog a bit..."

So... did I answer YOUR questions about "why?" (*SMILE*) Because I've gotta be honest with you, buddy... you've TOTALLY lost me with YOUR point. (*GRIN*)

Am I saying Robert A. George is a "liberal." No. I'm just saying that Robert seems to have a lot more in common with "Republicans" like Andrew Sullivan lately than with... people you and I would both consider "true" conservatives.

That's all, Ed. (*WINK*) No "inference." Just plain statements.

BILL

EdMcGon said...

Bill,
There is a difference between a news website and a blog, even if the blog is run by a journalist.

A news website has an obligation to run news stories. A blog carries no such obligation, unless the blog is promoted as a news website. Robert does not promote his blog as such. It is simply a place for him to talk about things that interest him.

William R. Barker said...

And on that note... (*SMILE*)... we can end this thread in agreement!

BILL