Support indie blogging--and keep it ad-free--by purchasing a G.M. book, below right.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Death of Mainstream News

Chris Hedges, the author and longtime NYT war reporter, writes that reliance on the old "objectivity" model worked for decades when the government leaders were "competent" but when they showed they were not the same model doomed news outlets. An excerpt:
Real reporting, grounded in a commitment to justice and empathy, could have informed and empowered the public as we underwent a corporate coup d’etat in slow motion. It could have stimulated a radical debate about structures, laws, privilege, power and justice. But the traditional press, by clinging to an outdated etiquette designed to serve corrupt power structures, lost its social function. Corporations, which once made many of these news outlets very rich, have turned to more effective forms of advertising. Profits have plummeted. And yet these press courtiers, lost in the fantasy of their own righteousness and moral probity, cling to the hollow morality of “objectivity” with comic ferocity.

The world will not be a better place when these fact-based news organizations die. We will be propelled into a culture where facts and opinions will be interchangeable, where lies will become true, and where fantasy will be peddled as news. I will lament the loss of traditional news. It will unmoor us from reality. The tragedy is that the moral void of the news business contributed as much to its own annihilation as the protofascists who feed on its carcass.

No comments:

My anti-death penalty e-book

My anti-death penalty e-book
Click cover to read more on history, and current debate, in America.