NPR: Will Next Year Be Better For Media?

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It's been a fascinating but worrisome year for journalism. There have been cutbacks just about everywhere. The giant Tribune Company has filed for bankruptcy. Some publications have completely folded. Some have stopped the presses and moved to the Internet.

NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik joins host Jacki Lyden to help us sort out where journalism's been and what's ahead.

Listen to it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchMedia

Posted December 28, 2008 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. Brian from T19 wrote:

With the advent of 24 hour news, the media has become narcissistic.  There is even a CNN show that reports on the media on Sundays.  They all want to seem ‘self-critical’ in an atgtempt at being humble.  Sad.

December 28, 12:43 pm | [comment link]
2. montanan wrote:

With registered voters having perceived an 8:1 bias in reporting for Pres.-elect Obama during the campaign, the traditional media have lost the detachment and objectivity which have made them invaluable in the past.  Their value lies not in their existence, but in their ability to provide objective information upon which recipients (or consumers of media) can form their own opinions.

December 28, 1:08 pm | [comment link]
3. libraryjim wrote:

Ever since the bias blatantly displayed during the Clinton run against Bush I, I have not been much of a follower of stories on the ‘mainstream media’ outlets.  It has just gotten more anti-Republican and more liberally based ever since, culminating with this past election, when Chris Matthews declared: The job of the media from here on out is to make sure the Obama presidency is a success.

December 28, 7:13 pm | [comment link]
4. Rick in Louisiana wrote:

Half the problem is indeed the Internet (competition).

But the other half - which the media seems reluctant to discuss/admit - is that I no longer trust the Mainstream Media. Especially (noting above) their behavior during the presidential election. I used to visit Msnbc.Com regularly.

I cannot tell you the last time I visited them for news.

December 29, 1:20 am | [comment link]
5. Irenaeus wrote:

The more fundamental problems affecting the news media involve declining interest in public affairs, shortened attention spans, audience fragmentation, and continued expansion of consumer entertainment choices. More broadly, it’s all about Me-Me-Me: finding cool, congenial, no-exertion entertainment that fits how we feel right now.

Right-wing consumers’ willingness to listen only to right-wing sources is just one part of audience fragmentation, which in turn is just one part of the challenges facing traditional news media.

December 29, 3:25 am | [comment link]
6. montanan wrote:

Iranaeus - the tendency to listen only to sources which reinforce one’s pre-existing views is not unique to conservatives; it is found on both ends of the political spectrum.  However, for many of us somewhere near the middle the MSM bias toward our President-Elect during the election season was somewhat overwhelming - and has enhanced my decision to be very suspicious and fairly dismissive of what they have to present.  Until the bias is tossed out of the majority of newsrooms (whatever the medium), I will not find the MSM to be worthy of my attention.

See here:
and here: (admittedly both were Chris Matthews - why does he still have a job?).

December 29, 4:09 am | [comment link]
7. Irenaeus wrote:

Montanan [#6]: I agree that “the tendency to listen only to sources which reinforce one’s pre-existing views is not unique to conservatives.” But in this country conservatives significantly outnumber liberals and the hard right greatly outnumbers the hard left. Moreover, conservatives have a larger, better-organized, better-funded infrastructure of their own (ranging from think tanks to talk shows) and thus can come closer to basking in ideological monoculture.

I agree that Obama received more favorable media coverage than McCain. But that doesn’t necessarily prove broader points about media bias. Indeed, it has its own parallels in the other direction. The news media lavished attention on the bumbles of Mondale in 1984 and Dukakis in 1988. More recently, Schwarzenegger trounced incumbent Grey Davis in the news media. And not surprisingly: Arnold was more colorful, more interesting than the aptly named Grey, and his rise made for good ink and lively pixels.

Surely it’s not surprising that Obama would become a media sensation: a young, telegenic, Kennedyesque black man running a Reaganesque, media-savvy campaign that stood to make history in a way even a hardened editor could understand. And running against someone who increasingly looked like a very tired old man nominated by a party now in disrepute.

December 29, 6:06 pm | [comment link]
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