Tuesday, April 01, 2003

Armchair media critic* David McDonnell sends these links from NY Times: First Alessandra Stanley, in her regular column "TV Watch," writes about the perceived "foxification" of news broadcasts. Some interesting quotes:

"The real bias in what we are seeing on television is the bias towards confusion," Tom Rosenstiel, director of the Project for Excellence in Journalism, a nonprofit organization in Washington, said.

All the better, in some ways. Meanwhile an ABC spokesman says since they're getting criticism from both the left and the right, "it shows we are doing our job very well." That may sound glib, but actually, it's usually a pretty accurate gauge of objectivity.

In another piece (strongly recommended), Stanley also offers a highly amusing (and correct) explanation of the "fluency gap" between Bush and Blair. Where Bush seems perturbed by critical questions, Blair gives the impression of considering the opposing point of view whilst being eager to persuade.

Fox news commentator David Asman says Blair has an unfair advantage because of his skills in Parliamentary debate: "President Bush doesn't have to put his views up to that kind of public criticism day after day after day." Yeah, that's like, sooo totally unfair.

Finally, the Times business section runs a balanced piece on the bubbling controversy over US radio behemoth Clear Channel Communications, the TV Nova of heartland American, which stands accused of drumming up support for the war by organizing and promoting patriotic rallies and Dixie Chick CD burning ceremonies. This piece basically debunks most grand conspiracy theorists by refuting the worst charges while giving plenty of ammunition to the critics.

Thank you, David, for reading my blog. To anybody else who's reading this: please email me to let me know.

* That's a joke, you see: all media critics are of the armchair variety, almost by definition.


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