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Mainstream media

wonder cow

Aug 12, 2005
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Some questions:

What is "mainstream media" and what news sources/agencies do you consider to be mainstream?

Based on what criteria?

Are your own political views used to determine what is and what is not mainstream media?

When someone states they prefer non-mainstream media does that necessarily mean they prefer American modern conservative media?
if so:
Is alternative media always this particular brand of "conservatism"?

Can a news agency/reporter have bias and still be considered a legitimate reporter?

To what degree is it ethical for a news reporter to allow their own bias to taint their reporting?

Should commentary be mixed with news or should their be a very clear line drawn between the two?

Is current mainstream media in the US left, slightly left, centrist, slightly right, or right? Evidence\Sources\Examples?

Is the media to often the targets of politicians? If so, what party\politicians attack the media the most?
"Should commentary be mixed with news or should their be a very clear line drawn between the two?"

There should be a very clear line drawn between the two, but that rarely happens.

"Is current mainstream media in the US left, slightly left, centrist, slightly right, or right?"

left for the most part
mainstream TV news: NBC, ABC, CBS - they are the original networks - they are broadcast for free to the public on public airwaves - they have controlled our daily dose of TV news since TV was invented.

mainstream newspaper: NYTimes, USA Today, Washington Post - NYT & WP are from probably the biggest markets & naturally makes them in the forefront/mainstream of printed news.

mainstream magazine: Time - probably the most popular magazine in America & possibly the oldest. Their man/person of the year is always cause for debate. No other magazine has the clout to declare such a thing.

mainstream cable news: CNN - I wrestle with this because I say they're mainstream because they've been around the longest but personally see them as extreme left; much like NPR.

There is an emerging new mainstream media with the internet & the popularity of FOX NEWS. All media/news has a bias - some to the left & some to the right. Traditionally I believe mainstream media has had a left or liberal lean to it. However, that's not necessarily the case anymore. Although, I believe most people refer to mainstream media as biased to the left. The sad thing is that news opinions aren't kept on the op-ed pages anymore. It's become the mainstream media itself - & you can easily find one to match your views.

I don't believe people who say they prefer non-mainstream media are necessarily conservative. Although it may appear that way. FOX is emerging as mainstream with a conservative slant when compared to CNN & the three networks who have an obvious slant to the left. My bet is that those who perfer non-mainstream media are just looking for something they believe is honest & without bias - they likely read from several different sources to balance their intake of news. Although some folks read some really off-the-wall stuff (prisonplanet, etc.). I prefer websites that list a variety news outlets (polticalnewsdaily.com & realclearpolitics.com). I also read from The Nation (very left) as well as The Weekly Standard (to the right). But the most centrist or unbiased in my opinion is U.S. News & World Report. Then there are websites like thehill.com & rollcall who spend less time giving opinions than other outlets (the mainstream outlets that have been forementioned here).

Well, this is my opinion & it likely has a bias - probably conservative since most of my views tend to fall on that side of a given debate.
Thanks for the reply.

I agree that commentary and news should be distinct.

I also believe that it is impossible to completely separate the reporter from their opinion. Although a good reporter should be as neutral as possible.

As for the news, I take it all with a grain of salt. I can normally pick out bias based on words used to describe events and sometimes based on the general demeanor of the reporter/anchor (with TV news).

As to the party that most frequently attacks the media, in my observation this would be the Republican party (also some would argue that is due to left bias). Although Dems are not innocent in this area either.

Republicans also seem better at manipulating the media and using the media to their advantage. This seems to contradict the generally accepted belief of media-left bias, but Republicans historically tend to have a more united voice, the drumbeat of which could make up for the alleged bias.
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