October 14, 2015

Why the Media Party acts like the Liberals' PR firm

Denyse O'LearyRebel Blogger
 

The decline of big media is a very significant news story of the last decade.

Editor Rachel Alexander notes:

In 2005, The New York Times cut 500 employees. In 2009, it began placing ads on the front page of its print edition. The company stopped offering lifelong positions for its editors and journalists in 2013. Former editor Jill Abramson reportedly begged senior editors that year to resign with a buyout plan.

And the job loss continues:

The annual survey of the industry by the American Society of News Editors was recently released, showing the nation’s newspapers are still in decline.

The study found that newspaper employment fell to 32,900 in 2014 from 36,700 in 2013.

At this rate, says media analyst Ken Doctor:

If we project the recent decline forward, we’ll have one-half the number of daily journalists working in 2016 or 2017 as we did 16 years ago.

For example, the Los Angeles Times announced in August that it was cutting ten percent of its staff, including top people. The publisher was fired after only one year.

TV isn’t faring much better.

Financial Times reported in August that “Record numbers of Americans are unplugging their subscriptions”:

The second quarter is always tough for the pay-TV industry, as families move home and college students disconnect, but this time it was the worst on record for net customer losses: an estimated 566,000 people cut the cord.

Millennials are ditching TV faster than anyone.

The Wall Street Journal tells us summer cable shows are down by double digits this year.

Adweek tells us, “Viewers overwhelmingly watch cable for library content, not originals. And the originals they reliably watch aren't the big award winners, either. … Generally speaking, the sales falloff is worse than even the analysts had predicted.”

Even the Oscar ratings are down. As is reality TV.

Two hundred and fifty Walt Disney employees, laid off, were forced to train their foreign replacements. Struggling CNN is trying out game shows, something the world surely needs more of.

Media analyst Scott Rasmussen observes:

Importantly, the loss felt by journalists is about more than money. It's a loss of influence and prestige. Before the digital era, TV anchors and big-time newspaper reporters had a monopoly over news coverage that could not be challenged. Alternative views could not be heard, even when the journalists were wrong.

The bad news for big media is due to the digital revolution, not to the fact that they are progressives (= whatever the question, government is the answer.

Not at all. Society is moving swiftly in their direction swiftly, and stragglers can just be bullied along.

Rather, they are unnecessary. Anyone who wishes can now build their own news network, consisting perhaps of the South China Morning Post, Hurriyet Daily (news from Turkey in English), and the Irish Times. Sometimes that is derisively called the "Daily Me."

Some may deride, but increasing numbers of people prefer it to the "Daily Them."

Now, here’s what I am calling to happen:

The survivors increasingly seek to be PR for progressive government.

One consequence is a sharp increase in manufactured news, possibly censorship of actual news. One blogger complains:

The Canadian Media is Shrouding the Federal Election in Darkness:

The Canadian election is merely five days away, and the campaign has now descended into a phase much like The Dark Ages. During the last two weeks of this eleven-week battle of attrition, the mainstream media’s fickle attention span has somehow remained fixated primarily on the minuscule niqab fray, instead of devoting top coverage to the many real and substantial issues facing our dear nation. It is curious why the mainstream media has suddenly found such concerted concentration on what it deems to be such a minor issue–and it’s worth spending the time unveiling.

Appropriately enough, the niqab fray began to unravel in Quebec ...

Yes, the big mainstream media is auditioning for its new role, as PR for progressive government. And it seeks with all its might to elect progressive government, in part for that reason.

How better to demonstrate that than to take up the niqab cause! Most female progressives would wither under sharia, or face something grimmer. How better to demonstrate their loyalty to progressivism than to advance the claims of something so profoundly illiberal, simply to “help out” in defeating Stephen Harper.

Yes, they are making a bad bargain, but don’t let’s waste time on that. Progressives have never been known, historically, to care much about the destruction they leave in their wake, including their own daughters’ liberties in an age of creeping acceptance of sharia. For one thing, they can always blame the “bigots” who oppose their current causes.

There has also been quite the spike in plagiarism and fabulism in recent years. Whereas Jayson Blair and Stephen Glass were punished by obscurity, increasingly such people are seen as stars (Mapes), celebs (Williams), and heroes (Dunham).

The spike in both the frequency and popularity points to an underlying issue: Progressives are generally not interested in facts or evidence. Their understanding of life leads them to think in terms of narrative and identity. Their media reflect that fact.

Traditional groups like Christians and Jews remain, for the most part, oblivious to their peril and take refuge in an interesting menagerie of strategies for avoiding confronting it.

I hope to unpack these issues in followup posts.

Comments
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commented 2015-10-18 03:50:58 -0400
Denyess – perhaps the dino media are socialist (let’s be honest about what “progrssives” and “Liberals” are) messengers these days because they see themselves surviving only as government subsidised welfare clients. Don’t want to bad mouth the man writing your pogy check.
commented 2015-10-16 13:02:57 -0400
“…but we Canadians HAVE CHOSEN to support a now superfluous medium like the CBC, in an age when practically everyone has access to the Internet. … ”

Let’s clarify that:

…but we Canadian POLITICIANS and BUREAUCRATS have CHOSEN FOR YOU to support a now superfluous medium like the CBC, in an age when practically everyone has access to the Internet. …
commented 2015-10-15 19:39:05 -0400
Fair enough, Chris Burnett, but we Canadians HAVE CHOSEN to support a now superfluous medium like the CBC, in an age when practically everyone has access to the Internet. And the CBC rewards us with the progressive propaganda they assume we all must want. What else did anyone think they were going to provide anyway? It is all they know.

It’s not them that needs to change, it’s US!

Until then, expect a blue whale-size barrage of hooey every time you turn on the TV. Be humbly grateful that you are not forced to watch it as well as pay for it.
commented 2015-10-15 18:26:39 -0400
It’s always predictable to watch any CBC report on an anti Harper “story” and then have the reporter ask for a comment from an average citizen, who amazingly turns out to be the Liberal candidate in the neighborhood. They are, of course, aghast at how awful Harper and his policies are. Next, cue the Justin clip appearing deeply hurt and saying he’s just thinking about Canadians. CBC and our tax dollars at work.
commented 2015-10-15 17:17:06 -0400
DENYSSE O’LEARY;
You say:
“…Anyone who gets their news exclusively from them will be gravely misled about what is happening in the world – thus, endangering themselves – though they will doubtless be able to drown out any sober, rational discussion with progressive talking points. And they will feel good about themselves while doing it.
Warn anyone who can be helped.”

Sure and if you’re not a girl after me own heart.
commented 2015-10-15 11:30:12 -0400
Peter A. Toth: Thanks for filling in an important area. The same thing has happened to journalism as happened to social sciences.
http://www.therebel.media/here_s_why_japanese_universities
As it happens, my concern was not with origins but outcomes. An outcome is that today’s media, struggling to find a place in the age of the Internet, are fit for nothing but to be mouthpieces for progressive politicians.
Anyone who gets their news exclusively from them will be gravely misled about what is happening in the world – thus, endangering themselves – though they will doubtless be able to drown out any sober, rational discussion with progressive talking points. And they will feel good about themselves while doing it.
Warn anyone who can be helped.
commented 2015-10-15 09:50:48 -0400
re Peter Toth’s Comment below — and so now the University of British Columbia hires Mohamed Fahmy to teach Journalism.
commented 2015-10-15 02:00:21 -0400
Excellent points Peter! While Ryerson’s dean of journalism in the 1960s Ted Schrader was “gay”, and his second in command Dick Lunn had a left wing streak in him, neither left that reflect on the hard core journalism ethics that they both espoused and taught their students to adhere to… (I was one of them)… OBJECTIVITY and GET THE FACTS STRAIGHT were their credos above all… Somewhere during the Vietnam War’s declining years that ideal of objectivity was put to pasture and derided in journalism schools across North America, and “advocacy” journalism was encouraged and allowed to “flower”… Decades later, we are now living with that reality of North America’s journalism’s drift since the 1970s – the prime example being that Barak Hussein’s Obama’s full history has yet to be examined…
commented 2015-10-15 00:01:55 -0400
One of the biggest contributors to the liberal progressive media bias was completely overlooked in this piece. The fact that nearly all of the schools and “professors” in journalism, are extremely left wing, and will fail any student that doesn’t conform to the socialist mindset and ideology. This is a fact that has been pointed out and exposed for over 2 decades, yet nothing has been done to remedy this situation. So we are left with journalists with an entitlement mentality, and a socialist ideology.
commented 2015-10-14 23:49:51 -0400
Linda… we are indeed “on a slippery ledge” and I blame that in large part for the U.S. press in, overwhelming measure, NOT vetting Obama when he ran for president… From there the events have cascaded to where we are now… Canada’s media have contributed to the “madness” by covering up for Justin’s juvenile logic and bizarre statements and never having held Mulcair’s feet to the fire for still having a dual citizenship while running to be the Prime Minister of Canada….
commented 2015-10-14 21:35:01 -0400
The whole world is tettering on a slippery ledge of madness.
I wish Sir Winston Churchill were here to feed our spirit and urge us on to Victory and to never surrender.
This is not the times for weakness or self-doubt.
commented 2015-10-14 21:09:54 -0400
JCR, agreed. The big struggle is truly for a free Internet. But if enough people are still willing to believe the flood tide of nonsense from the legacies, we can hardly begin the battle to keep the Internet free.
commented 2015-10-14 21:09:54 -0400
JCR, agreed. The big struggle is truly for a free Internet. But if enough people are still willing to believe the flood tide of nonsense from the legacies, we can hardly begin the battle to keep the Internet free.
commented 2015-10-14 20:55:53 -0400
Very interesting post. I agree that big media is in decline. But I recently saw an interview with Matt Drudge (Drudge Report) in which he was lamenting new media and the emerging threat in the form of big corporate $$$ flowing into major Web sites. By doing this they can maintain a certain amount of control in shaping online content so it fits into the progressive narrative. He also mentioned the fact that if the U.S. govt modified copyright laws this could spell the end for the Drudge Report and a lot of other smaller, important voices on the Web (Breitbart, etc.). I agree big media will never have the control they once did over media narratives and that is a great thing, but if big liberal corporate interests (Soros, Buffet, Steyer, etc.) start buying up the Web it could be cause for concern. Drudge thinks so.
commented 2015-10-14 20:25:29 -0400
Andy Neimers, they are all in the same boat. They need a government that needs a Pravda. Canada doesn’t need such a government, but that is another matter.
commented 2015-10-14 20:25:29 -0400
Andy Neimers, they are all in the same boat. They need a government that needs a Pravda. Canada doesn’t need such a government, but that is another matter.
commented 2015-10-14 17:42:49 -0400
As I’ve noted before, my “miner’s canary” i.e. indicator of the drift left, and now blatant bias, has been The National Post during the past year, joining the ranks of the CBC, The Red Star, Mop and Pail, CTV and Global …
commented 2015-10-14 12:38:16 -0400
In fact they ARE the PR firm.

No doubt about it.

No such thing as journalistic integrity any more.