Kind of like Donnie and Marie out there today. Overall the weather wasn’t a little bit country nor a little bit rock ‘n’ roll, but it was a little bit spring in a little bit winter. Identifying the potential for both, I dressed accordingly and had a great ride.
Was chewing on the idea of celebrity journalists today — and left kind of a bad taste in my mouth.
As soon as you tell me you’re a fan of the journalist (fill in the blank) __________ ______________, your political opinion and my perceptiopn of your acumen might slip a bit.
It’s not that I don’t want to participate in conversation with you or that I don’t value your opinion, it’s just that as soon as we become fans of journalists, journalism itself suffers.
I don’t care if you’re a fan of Rachel Maddow on one side, Tucker Carlson on the other or any of the countless talking heads who give journalism a bad name on cable TV.
And let’s make the distinction between journalist and on-air personality. I might use those terms interchangeably here, because most everyone else seems to these days, but a journalist and an on-air personality are not necessarily the same.
Both the right and the left are well represented with people who wish to sway the story by use of the inflection and drama they conjure when presenting the story.
It’s easy to sway the opinion of the curious or the unknowing by using the dramatic pause, the loud emphasis of a word, by using hand and arm gestures or by making a snarky comment about a person involved in the story. And ever-present in this type of reporting, are the almost obligatory eye rolls when speaking of the other side..
Of course, attempting to sway a story is as old as journalism itself. This is just much easier to do in broadcast journalism. These behaviors can clearly influence our perception of a story much more than if we simply read it.
These traits of on-air presentation seem, to me anyway, to have never been worse or more widespread. Broadcast journalism has become the lowest form of entertainment programming.
If we are so insistent with one another that investigations of facts need to be accurate, well-checked and put through an ardent series of filters, why do we embrace the presenters for undermining all of that with their drama…?
Because it’s entertainment, and we should at least admit that. Cable news is nothing more than Skid Row theater.
Each morning after I wake, I quickly scan and correlate the headlines of the most pressing stories from several online news sources. I do this to ensure there is no missile headed my way and to see whether or not the capital building has been set on fire yet. After that, I ignore the world within the box because I know that, above all, they’re not trying to inform me, they are trying to sway me.
Being a fan of or following a specific journalist undermines what journalism is about. Honestly, in my opinion, it’s a big part of the problem.
This is what I think about when I ride… Jhciacb
15.9 mph avg
Today’s earworm: Five String Serenade, by Mazzy Star
Whether you ride a bike or not, thank you for taking the time to ride along with me today. If you haven’t already, please scroll up and subscribe. Oh, and there is this from Mazzy Star. Enjoy…!