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Thread: Trust and the news

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    Default Trust and the news

    There has been a lot of talk about how many people don't trust mainstream news outlets. This is a good example...

    Yesterday the AP tweeted the following:



    "Hundreds". Yet the linked article states that "Waving national flags and banners denouncing U.S. President Donald Trump, tens of thousands of Iraqis marched peacefully through Baghdad on Friday to demand the ouster of U.S. troops from their country in a protest organized by a populist Shiite cleric."

    Apparently the AP can't decide on a number. If someone only got their news from that tweet and didn't click the article they would think that it was a small protest. But even if they read the article, they would not get the truth.

    CNN reported that: "Hundreds of thousands of protesters marched through Baghdad on Friday calling for US troops to leave Iraq, heeding the call of powerful Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr who called for a "Million Man March.""


    Here's another pic from that protest.

    Eat one live toad first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you all day.

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    We don't live on just french fries, we don't get our news from one source. Read widely and often. A piece of news is just that. A piece. No scholar would make a conclusion based on one slim bit of information. Neither should we, in any situation.

    For the example above, the AP bit - what was the timing on that? Was it posted very early as the event was beginning? Not challenging by asking, just wanting more information.
     

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    It's not that the AP can't decide on a number. I'll wager it's a function of how wire stories like this work and their fundamental incompatibility with social media. If bet that tweet came from the first version of the story to cross the wire early in the day. As the story evolves the reporters and editors are making pretty rapid updates to the story trunk as the events progress -- crowd grows in size, they get quotes from speeches or attendees, etc etc. But the tweet still hangs out there with the initial version of what they could reliably report. This isn't the AP can't get it's facts straight, because the story does tell the story. But their social team clearly isn't talking to the desk editors managing the story trunk, or someone's not in the mid morning or mid afternoon editorial meeting to review the top stories on the calendar.

    Let's critique process, but let's not use this as yet another tired example of "don't believe the media" because that's a far more corrosive perspective.
     

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    I'm with you Thomas. Treat all news as propaganda until you have sourced enough to make informed insights than live with it until the next time.

    I watch Fox news, I read WSJ, I scan Christian Science News and floss daily.

    Be smart not angry. When you are pissed off you'll look for the answers you want.

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Quote Originally Posted by theflashunc View Post
    It's not that the AP can't decide on a number. I'll wager it's a function of how wire stories like this work and their fundamental incompatibility with social media. If bet that tweet came from the first version of the story to cross the wire early in the day. As the story evolves the reporters and editors are making pretty rapid updates to the story trunk as the events progress -- crowd grows in size, they get quotes from speeches or attendees, etc etc. But the tweet still hangs out there with the initial version of what they could reliably report. This isn't the AP can't get it's facts straight, because the story does tell the story. But their social team clearly isn't talking to the desk editors managing the story trunk, or someone's not in the mid morning or mid afternoon editorial meeting to review the top stories on the calendar.

    Let's critique process, but let's not use this as yet another tired example of "don't believe the media" because that's a far more corrosive perspective.
    @theflashunc nails it. Social media is a good tool for getting a story out to a large number of people, but it's a terrible tool for an evolving narrative or for correcting an honest mistake. The social team, in this case, may have also just chosen a shitty phrase for the tweet relative to the actual story. But this case is hardly an example of institutional or systemic flaws with the media. If anything, it just serves as a reminder of how much of a cesspool Twitter is (pro tip: don't read the comments).

    And, @thomas nails it too. Responsible adults get news and information from a variety of sources. Not just to balance out any inherent biases or points of view, but also because no single reporter can cover all the angles necessary to have a complete picture of complex world events.
    "I guess you're some weird relic of an obsolete age." - davids

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Former journo here... lotta people in that industry trying their darndest to be fair and professional (lot who are, well, not) but probably ineptitude or basic human error, too... but one part of the problem might also be the industry and the tech and the churn of how the industry's tried to keep up with the tech as others have pointed out re: social media. Let that horse run away!

    I go with slower and slower news ... my only real engagement with content in the news department are two magazines - Harper's on the left and First Things on the right; both are dogmatic in their own ways, but in every issue, eventually, they come around to maybe one insight or another.

    Slowness is becoming a thing ... there are people who have left the news industry and are banking on slower and slower media, so to speak, focusing on "writing of lasting value" as Robert Cottrell of The Browser put it, nothing that's designed to be thrown away. Cottrell would be an excellent source of insight in current media. I say insight because that's distinct from information! I, too, am betting on print and slower media prevailing (unless our culture truly completes its descent into madness). Since Guttenberg, content has gotten cheaper to produce and, incidentally, less valuable. Pendulum's gonna swing. Hopefully.
     

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    my daily check-ins are reuters, wsj, and the npr site -- read them across each other, and triangulate.

    I avoid cable news.

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Zambenini, this is compelling.

    We are (mostly) all on a real name basis. This allows some trust to become associated with our "putting it out there" qualities. Agreed?

    Let's see three PRINT daily news picks. *We can cover social and TV later.

    New York Times (pretty much cover to cover)
    WAPO (Opinions, Local, anything NYT misses)
    WSJ (Home, World, Politics)

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    I see WSJ, NYT, and two Detroit papers (Free Press and News) pretty much daily.

    My prediction about Social Media is that it will eventually follow the path of the newspapers in that over time, professionalism and standards will emerge and reliability will go up.

    Removing anonymity is a start. I should own what I say and be careful with my words.

    DJ
     

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    The Atlantic, but not every day.

    I Tried to Live Like Joe Rogan - The Atlantic
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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Quote Originally Posted by DOOFUS View Post
    my daily check-ins are reuters, wsj, and the npr site -- read them across each other, and triangulate.

    I avoid cable news.
    Bingo. More or less the same. I read 99% of my information about “news” and politics.

    Triangulation is a good word. Filter out the noise and see what makes sense and what’s relevant. A lot of what passes as news, especially on TV, is a distraction from real news.
    La Cheeserie!

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Back in the day when I was still in the military and had a SECRET computer on my desk, I could read all the open source news, human intelligence, Early Bird, and other sources available on a secret server. It was always interesting to read the raw stories then wait until later when the mainstream media would report them. Reporting with a bias isn't new, history was written with a bias, people are biased. I get news from various sources. I don't really like Fox News but I like Fox Business. I drink my coffee with Maria Bartiromo each morning. I'm a skeptic of all the news outlets.
    Weight Doper

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Quote Originally Posted by Too Tall View Post
    I'm with you Thomas. Treat all news as propaganda until you have sourced enough to make informed insights than live with it until the next time.

    I watch Fox news, I read WSJ, I scan Christian Science News and floss daily.

    Be smart not angry. When you are pissed off you'll look for the answers you want.

    #offmyittybittysoapbox
    The WSJ and Fox News are owned by the same folks, perhaps that is why you think your news is propaganda? You are watching the news that repeats the most lies, or has the most bias.. Not all of them are lying, most reporters are trying to report truth. By consuming (I recommend reading) more than one source of news, you can find more truth, as we all see things a bit different and will present the story differently. TV news is probably less substantial than print, they have to look nice and argue to get people to watch.
    FOX's file: | PunditFact
    These are the most and least biased news outlets in the US - Business Insider

    I just dont see the news as propaganda, i see propaganda as propaganda.
    Matt Zilliox

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Quote Originally Posted by DJB View Post
    My prediction about Social Media is that it will eventually follow the path of the newspapers in that over time, professionalism and standards will emerge and reliability will go up.
    I’m not sure that has been the natural direction of journalistic standards & professionalism. My observation has been that standards decline as time passes. I’m not sure that i would argue that the NYT’s standards have strengthened not weakened in the last 20 years.

    It’s been my personal opinion that the ‘Jerry Springer Show’ didn’t move towards the direction of network news standards. Network news moved in the direction of Jerry Springer standards.
     

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Native americans must have reported the news of the mayflower or Columbo or Cortez in a different manner. Otoh, those arrivals were fact and the existence of native americans on the land is fact.
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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    I think a good litmus test for a news source is how they correct mistakes in a story, or if they even have a corrections policy.

    The Best Corrections of 2019 - The New York Times

    Corrections - News, Articles, Biography, Photos - WSJ.com

    Because refusing to acknowledge or correct a mistake is a form of lying.

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    Native americans must have reported the news of the mayflower or Columbo or Cortez in a different manner.
    Neil Young's correction (revision or remaster) in 2016 of Cortez the Killer was fantastic:

    Last edited by thollandpe; 3 Weeks Ago at 02:51 PM. Reason: Caveat emptor, y'all
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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Quote Originally Posted by thomas View Post
    We don't live on just french fries, we don't get our news from one source. Read widely and often. A piece of news is just that. A piece. No scholar would make a conclusion based on one slim bit of information. Neither should we, in any situation.

    For the example above, the AP bit - what was the timing on that? Was it posted very early as the event was beginning? Not challenging by asking, just wanting more information.
    I certainly agree with the need to look at more than one source. However, I think most people don't do that....they find a news channel, a paper, etc. that they are comfortable with and stick to it.

    As for the timing, I don't know for sure. If you look at the actual tweet it is stamped 2:01AM Jan 24. The 2nd reply that I see has several pictures (one that I borrowed in my post) and is stamped 2:13AM Jan 24. I have no idea if the timestamps reflect the local time for each poster or if the replies in the thread are keyed to the original post.

    Quote Originally Posted by theflashunc View Post
    It's not that the AP can't decide on a number. I'll wager it's a function of how wire stories like this work and their fundamental incompatibility with social media. If bet that tweet came from the first version of the story to cross the wire early in the day. As the story evolves the reporters and editors are making pretty rapid updates to the story trunk as the events progress -- crowd grows in size, they get quotes from speeches or attendees, etc etc. But the tweet still hangs out there with the initial version of what they could reliably report. This isn't the AP can't get it's facts straight, because the story does tell the story. But their social team clearly isn't talking to the desk editors managing the story trunk, or someone's not in the mid morning or mid afternoon editorial meeting to review the top stories on the calendar.
    You could be right, it's certainly a possibility. But I do know that more and more, a lot of news organizations are towing the government line. Sadly, I have little trust with US news sources these days.
    Eat one live toad first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you all day.

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Quote Originally Posted by choke View Post
    I certainly agree with the need to look at more than one source. However, I think most people don't do that....they find a news channel, a paper, etc. that they are comfortable with and stick to it.
    A lot of people chose to get their facts from facebook conspiracy theories from religious goups or left wing groups. Left or right it does not matter: it´s taking democracy down . One of the pillars of freeedom is anindependent press whose only compromise is reporting the facts. One may not like the bias of the NYTimes but their facts are impeccable.
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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Quote Originally Posted by choke View Post

    You could be right, it's certainly a possibility. But I do know that more and more, a lot of news organizations are towing the government line. Sadly, I have little trust with US news sources these days.
    Have a little more faith in the hard working folks at news organizations. I experienced plenty of similar things working at a major newswire for several years. The right hand often doesn't know what the left hand is doing in a giant organization, and that's not some nefarious conspiracy to hoodwink the public. Lack of communication across departments in a corporation is pretty much a universal problem, even for people in the communications business.
     

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    Default Re: Trust and the news

    Quote Originally Posted by zambenini View Post

    I go with slower and slower news ... my only real engagement with content in the news department are two magazines - Harper's on the left and First Things on the right; both are dogmatic in their own ways, but in every issue, eventually, they come around to maybe one insight or another.

    Slowness is becoming a thing ... there are people who have left the news industry and are banking on slower and slower media, so to speak, focusing on "writing of lasting value" as Robert Cottrell of The Browser put it, nothing that's designed to be thrown away.
    I think slowness is the antidote to most bad journalism, which seems to be suffering from the terrible combination of click bait and rush to be first.
    It's inconceivable that complex stories and nuance can survive in a twitter and headline only reading universe, and much of the time those headlines
    we turn out to be just wrong, distracting, or manipulated to the point it's not worth following the "news" until there has been time to digest what
    really has happened.

    A turning point for me was 9/11 coverage. When you go back and look a things that are reported in 'real time' (face it, who ever does this?)
    the results should really not be that surprising; a ton of coverage is just total horseshit speculation. The problem today is it's really easy to ask
    questions nobody knows the answers to. It's even easier to ask questions nobody needs to know the answers to. Now that social media
    and cable news operate in a complete 'real time' environment, it makes it nearly impossible for thoughtful and useful information to be
    presented in sound bites.

    I find myself choosing Joe Rogan and some unconventional podcasts over corporate media, not necessarily for 'news', but for current
    events content. The US election cycle and 3 years of Trump seem to have broken corporate media, who only know 'hit pieces' and click bait,
    and have really struggled to find a path that doesn't follow conform to the narrow 'narrative' prism through which all content is viewed.

    An interesting media case study will be the Presidential campaign of Andrew Yang. When you follow his corporate media appearances to see him,
    (if he gets any coverage) he's very very good at crafting a message to fit the model and the context, and yet even he can struggle to message
    in the bites that are required, it gives one pause for why the system is this way. When given more time, he can be infinitely more informative.
    It's actually been incredibly interesting (if tragic) to watch the evolution of his presentation actually devolve somewhat in the last couple of months
    in the mainstream media as the formats he is forced to comply with actually hinder his ability to communicate in a useful manner.

    -g
    EPOst hoc ergo propter hoc

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