Sunday, November 21, 2004

The He-said-she-said Press

David Shaw of the LA Times has gotten into an argument with Jay Rosen and Matt Welch, re the former's Are We Headed for an Opposition Press.


Shaw's response, typically for him, embodies five classic pathologies of the monopoly-newspaper media critic: Disdain for the audience, exaggerated self-regard, hostility toward competition, distrust of the audience, and a fundamentally conservative outlook toward change.

1) Disdain for the audience. "I think that some Americans, for all their protestations about 'media bias,' do want their news prepackaged and predigested--slanted, biased--so they don't have to think about it."

An odd slam on the audience indeed. Like many people, we at Age of Reason have stopped reading newspapers much and started reading opposition press outlets like dailykos, but it's not because we're intellectually lazy: it's because the LA Times and papers like it routinely repeat lies and talking points from the Republican noise machine, when what they should be doing is doing the work of figuring out that they are lies and talking points (rather than news) and leaving them on the editing room floor. We the People have been driven to the internet where, with a little intellectual effort, one can quickly hunt through half a dozen news sources and figure out the real truth that underlies the articles in the he-said-she-said press.


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