Tag Archives: News

Is Biased News Clogging your Information Stream?

Are you drinking out of a sewer? Sometimes, readers get bogged down in hearing only one side of a news story. For a fresh approach, readers should take in both sides of media, both liberal and conservative.

The infographic below, shows where sources lie in their bias. An astute reader would be better served to read less biased, or a balance between both sides, to make a fresh original decision. When we side with one bias, we tend to only hear more from that side because we like to hear that particular side. The problem with this practice, is that is causes a bigger divide in our country. Being less biased and more objective, is a mature way to confront news stories. But it takes effort to wade through the biases and make an informed decision.

News There are so many ways that people can attain news. Whether it’s online, a newspaper, or from television, news is easily accessible to anyone with a viewing device. People have different preferences when it comes to their news source: liberal or conservative and even how the news is being shared, digital or traditional news.

As you can see from the scale, there is the far left, far right and the “sweet spot” or as it is called here, the “Goldilocks Zone.” At the farthest left, is BuzzFeed and The Huffington Post. In contrast, on the far right is DRUDGE REPORT and BreitBart, two news websites. One of the least biased news sources, BBC, (British Broadcasting Corporation) provides online news, as well as nature documentaries.

It is tricky for a company to not be biased, but sites like PolitiFact, Snopes, FACTCHECK, or others are right in the middle with little room for bias. This is impressive and obviously atypical for a media company, especially a news company. Everyone should make an effort to be as unbiased as possible, so they can see the whole picture. When they see the whole picture, not only do they understand the differences in both sides, but they can think for themselves. If they only look for biased news, they are limiting themselves and clogging what might be the truth in the story. Viewing the news from one side, is like using half of the brain. Why wouldn’t you want to use all of your brain? In other words, you only get half of the information that you need from a biased source, compared to all of the information you could get from an unbiased source.

But bias isn’t the only thing wrong with the news. Many news stations and websites lie to get more viewers. Many of them take words out of context, make fun of someone or even make up whatever they want and call it news. The graphic below shows that when news companies deceive people and they find out, it causes a lack of trust in the viewers.

News

The graphic mentions clickbait, which many of us have heard that term, as it is an everyday word used on YouTube. Clickbait, refers to the false presentation of information solely for the benefit of the one who created it. For example, a YouTube video could be clickbait and the same with a news article. The purpose of clickbait, is to get the reader or viewer engaged in whatever is being presented to them. It combines the fishing term of putting bait on a hook, while also using the technological term for interacting with your computer while using a mouse. Clickbait is one of the most deceptive and clever tactics used by those who want to attract attention to a particular thing, especially using the internet. We may have heard of most of these, but may not know what propaganda is exactly. Propaganda is similar to clickbait, but with a biased twist to it.

So if we have all of this bias and misinformation in our media, why hasn’t anyone done anything about it? Is there even a solution to this problem? Let me know your thoughts about this serious issue.

-Calvin Cook

Extra! Extra! Newspapers are Making a Comeback! – Fighting for a Free Press under President Trump

Approximately three hundred and fifty newspapers, from the Boston Globe and Des Moines Register, to the Anchorage Daily News. All of them are asking, or should I say telling, President Trump to stop with the name calling and the constant insults that he makes about media.

Many are claiming that the words can be dangerous to the views of the people and that free speech is being shut down. They’re right. According to “The Economist” 70 percent of Republican believe Trump over any media outlet. They blame media outlets for being more liberal and going against any Republican.

“This editorial project is not against the Trump administration’s agenda. It’s a response to put us into the public discourse and defend the First Amendment.” Marjorie Pritchard (Boston Globe)

Newspapers have been in America since the late 1600s, and for years they were the only source of news outreach. Newspapers have recently been put on the back burner to social media, television, and even online newspapers, but these editorials are part of a comeback.

newspapersIn 2016 Donald Trump became President, and he started what many people are calling a ‘war on press’ soon after. “Fake news” comes out of Trump’s mouth more than any other statement, besides “you’re fired”, and many media representatives have a problem with him putting down their content so often. Any negative statement a media outlet makes against him gets categorized as “fake news” and he brands the free press as an “enemy to the American people”. Now, the oldest source of news has decided to speak out and fight back against the war Trump has declared.

At a Speech in Elkhart, Indiana Donald Trump called the media “the fake news media” and the crowd began to vigorously applaud https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DjJQ8wF07tU.

This isn’t the first time that President Trump has made hostile comments towards the media. His tweets regularly show his disapproval towards them. In one attacking tweet, Trump seemingly contradicted himself saying “They asked my daughter Ivanka whether or not the media is the enemy of the people. She correctly said no. It is the fake news, which is a large percentage of the media, that is the enemy of the people!”

Trump is not a big fan of any source of media that goes against what he is saying. His beliefs, and what he is doing for this country, in his eyes, are correct and media sources that speak out against him are fake.

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Fox News is an exception, however. President Trump glorifies Fox news and commonly directs his “fans” to pay attention to “Fox and Friends.”

Freedom of speech is defined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary as “the legal right to express one’s opinions freely”. Opinion is defined as “a generally held view”. If you do not see where I am headed with this, freedom of speech means a person can state any opinion, view or information, and it should be okay. Whether someone else decides to believe it or not, that is their choice. Trump tweets and makes claims that he perceives as correct, which is freedom of speech. Newspaper do the same, and that is still freedom of speech. On August 15th they took a stand and expressed their opinions as a group.

The Boston Globe started the project by stating that a corrupt leader would have a problem with the free press. The suspicious action taken on by any leader will be documented, and obviously no leader would want to be called out for doing something that goes against protocol. Trump has gone as far as talking about closing down news outlets, such as CNN, The Washington Post and the New York Times, which are all big time media outlets. This goes directly against the First Amendment; Freedom of speech and the press. It is nothing new that the media has been criticized for being biased, this dates back to when media for started printing, but the media shouldn’t be threatened.

newspapers

Even if he doesn’t take away the overall sources of media, Trump plans on discrediting media sites, so while they live on no one believes them. If the public doesn’t listen to an outside source of information about what Trump and his administration is doing, then the only source they will have is him and his word, which is more dangerous than any article written according to the Anchorage Daily Press. As our founder Thomas Jefferson wrote, “Our liberty depends on the freedom of the press, and that cannot be limited without being lost.”

-Kaylee Daniels

High-Tech Storytelling: How New Technology is Revolutionizing Broadcast Television

Turn on the five o’clock news on your local TV station and you’ll see that the anchors are no longer sitting behind their usual desk with a generic background. Instead, they are standing by a plasma TV, or in front of a wall of monitors showing a local cityscape.

storytellingOver the past few decades, broadcast news has become more popular than print news. Instead of reading articles in the Sunday paper as a main source of news, TV viewers are able to get their information, and a lot of it, in a much shorter time. Visual aspects (video and graphics) and sound bites, allow the viewer to understand the story better. But now the evolution of the Internet is challenging TV news.

Many people today, especially millennials, are getting most of their news from websites and social media. Cord-cutters and cord-nevers are now threatening TV news outlets with the fear that their scheduled broadcast will one day become irrelevant.

In order to remain relevant and gain viewership, stations are now using the latest technology to upgrade their sets and to tell the story in new and appealing ways.

News studios are starting to become much more tech-savvy. Anchors and reporters continue to use traditional desks, but are surrounded by monitors and are able to move to plasma TV’s or a multipurpose center that includes monitors and can be used in a variety of ways.

KING 5 News in Seattle, Washington is an example of a studio that recently made the upgrade. The studio is a 360-degree set, which means the anchors and/or reporters can deliver the news from any point in the set, giving them flexibility. Eleven additional cameras were added to allow for this to happen. The studio is filled with LED lights that gives the set a modern feel. Anchors there say the new set helps them to tell stories better and give the viewers at home a better understanding of the story.

A local example of this would be KWWL in Waterloo. Recently, the station built a brand new set similar to KING 5 in many ways. The set includes a desk, monitors, and high-definition quality along with a designated weather center that is also surrounded by many monitors and computers. The purpose of this technology is to give viewers an innovative way to see the news and understand the story.

Along with high-tech studios, TV stations are also using new technology to tell the story better out in the field. TV news drones are starting to become much more popular. Drones are portable and are fairly easy to operate. Drones are best used for giving the viewer a better sense of a natural disaster or a scene, like a major car crash, that can help keep viewers safe.

TV news drones are also starting to replace TV news helicopters because they are less expensive, portable, quieter, and they can fly closer to the ground.

storytelling

Along with drones, some stations are starting to experiment with 360 cameras. These cameras allow the viewer to see every angle of a scene all at once. The BBC experimented with 360 cameras in the Swiss Alps and they were able to pull off a broadcast with immersive views from all perspectives. While they were successful, the camera crews decided that 360 video is best when it is on online platforms. This is because viewers can interact with the 360 images and choose what they want to see. Producers believe that 360 video also is only suitable for some stories.

While TV news is trying to tell the story better and gain viewership with new technology, it may not be everything viewers want. Keeping up with modern technology is a positive thing, but when it comes to news, if the content is not there it may not be as positive as stations think. Comments on articles about studio “set theory” explained how viewers don’t necessarily care about the technology, they care about the quality of the stories that are being presented. Going forward, TV news stations should try and keep up with the latest technology, but should not forget good quality journalism that many people may seek when tuning into their broadcast.

Casey Allbee

Tweets Aren’t News: What Millennials (Actually) Want

At the National Association of Broadcasters conference last week, I attended a session called Social Media and the Business of Live Television. During the Q&A section of the talk, a woman asked a question about the baffling new trend in television news where newscasters read tweets from viewers on air. Whether it be reactions to the current story, comments on the news cast, or just whatever some idiot decides to tweet while using the approved hashtag, news programs just can’t stop giving people their 15 minutes of fame.

The woman who asked the question wanted to know exactly why newscasters do this. She didn’t see the value of it, and judging from the sounds of approval, neither did the audience. They found it vapid, uninteresting, and just plain dumb. The response from the panel was essentially, “Yeah. It’s pretty dumb. We’re still going to do it though.” This was supplemented with other buzzword-filled answers such as: “Tweets are news now.” and “This is what millennials respond to.”

millennialI’m going to ask you to stop right there. I heard the word “millennial” way too much at the NAB Show. The definition of a “millennial” is “a person born in the 1980s or 1990s.” I fit that definition. So, as a “millennial,” as all you “old media” professionals love to call me, I would like to say, please stop telling me what I want instead of listening to what I’m telling you. You wonder why my generation doesn’t watch news on TV, why the percentage of news we get from television and broadcasting is approximately 0%. Well wonder no more, for I have your answer. We want you to do your job.

Don’t read tweets on the air. Don’t talk about the traffic this post is getting on Facebook. And for the love of God, don’t talk about whatever stupid video is “taking over the Internet.” You don’t want to do it. We don’t want to see it. We want news. Plain and simple.

Most young people who actually seek out news prefer to read it on the Internet rather than watch it. They get it from NPR, Politico, Slate, or even BuzzFeed. Can you guess why? Because in written stories, you don’t get bogged down with all the “shiny objects” that TV news is constantly trying to throw at you. We don’t need to be pandered to.

BarronsMillenials    Time_Millennial

In all boils down to the simple fact that tweets aren’t news. Tweets are people reacting to news. People who, in all likelihood, do not have journalism degrees or broadcasting experience. Their tweets are not fact-checked, their biases are not accounted for. They are not the journalists. You are. Don’t outsource your responsibilities to the masses. When you start reporting on tweets you are no longer reporting news. News is not a reaction to itself.

Look, we want the same thing. Trust me. I’ve heard many a middle-aged person get all nostalgic about Walter Cronkite. I don’t know if it’s possible to be nostalgic about something that you weren’t around to experience, but I definitely feel something very similar to that. All I want is for someone to sit down and tell me the truth for 30 minutes. All I want is for journalists to do their jobs.

Olivia Guns