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View Full Version : Elections The Media's Liberal Bias Bias


Direckshun
07-28-2008, 10:32 AM
I'm not going to argue that the media isn't generally liberally biased, as I generally believe that it is. But in specific instances (such as this election season), I think we focus on the wrong things to determine whether this is actually true.

Jake, for example, focused on the fact that the donations from the media have largely favored Obama. But that's just private citizens acting like private citizens -- we should instead focus on coverage.

Now a lot of the conservatives here have taken the fact that the anchors from the three networks (ABC, NBC, and CBS) went overseas with Obama as surefire evidence that they are in the bag for Obama. But an interesting study has emerged about those exact news teams, which remain the most popular news outlets in the country.

The Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University, which has been studying the media 20 years, has released a report (http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-onthemedia27-2008jul27,0,6802141.story) showing the negative-to-positive stories aired about each candidate by ABC, NBC, and CBS.

The results intially, from the primaries, certainly vindicate some sort of media bias: 64% of statements about Obama were positive, and just 43% of statements about McCain were positive. That does favor Obama, but according to the CMPA, there was a very low frequency of these types of statements.

The frequency of positive/negative statements always picks up during the general election, however, and looky what researchers found: from the day Hillary Clinton dropped out of the race, only 28% of the coverage was positive for Obama and a whopping 72% was negative. For McCain, 43% of the statements were positive and 57% negative.

Instead of a severe political bias, it's more accurate to look at this in practical terms: the media enjoyed the new guy, but when he emerged as the front runner, it became incredibly critical. This is not for political reasons, it's for basic psychological reasons.

Just thought you'd like to know.

morphius
07-28-2008, 10:37 AM
Yeah, critical like, "Why hasn't Obama taken a huge lead in a year where the republican candidate should get destroyed?" Sadly I have heard this more than once this season.

beer bacon
07-28-2008, 11:27 AM
The worst thing about modern media is that it seems like at least half the time they just act like stenographers. Instead of analyzing the factuality of certain claims or attacks made by politicians, they repeat the claims/attacks word-for-word, and then discuss their "impact."

Very little is done in the way of investigating the accuracy of the claims or attacks. It is not whether the claims are true or not, it is how does this make McCain look bad? How does this make Obama look good? Will *insert demographic here* respond to this?

Direckshun
07-28-2008, 11:29 AM
Yeah, critical like, "Why hasn't Obama taken a huge lead in a year where the republican candidate should get destroyed?" Sadly I have heard this more than once this season.
That's not a negative story.

Guru
07-29-2008, 04:00 AM
The worst thing about modern media is that it seems like at least half the time they just act like stenographers. Instead of analyzing the factuality of certain claims or attacks made by politicians, they repeat the claims/attacks word-for-word, and then discuss their "impact."

Very little is done in the way of investigating the accuracy of the claims or attacks. It is not whether the claims are true or not, it is how does this make McCain look bad? How does this make Obama look good? Will *insert demographic here* respond to this?

They are certainly no Walter Cronkite.