Why You Should Never Take The News From The Daily Telegraph
An example of newsworthy events: The unexpected arrest of several suspects in a local double-shooting, resulting in the death of one man and the injuring of several others. A new flood of illegal alien children has resulted in many police stations being overwhelmed. Local authorities have not yet confirmed the story. An example of another type of newsworthy event: A school science teacher is accused of plagiarizing from a post on an internet website.
All news is based on some kind of bias, according to veteran journalist George Wendel Clark in his new book, “Journalism Today.” He explained that journalists are trained to “keep their own side of the story” and be as objective as possible. Clark explained that some reporters “keep their news values very closely, while others let their personal feelings guide their reporting.” He went on to say, “So much of today’s reporting depends on feelings, that it is rare to find even a true story.” Unfortunately, “the facts always come second and it is the journalists who usually pay the price.”
For instance, did you notice how often you see the words, “careful,” “reluctant,” “forthright,” and “professional” in recent news stories? These are all coded language meant to denote certain kinds of behavior. We’ve learned to distrust reporters and newsrooms, recognizing that the public doesn’t trust them with their personal feelings. How then do journalists decide which stories they will publish, and which ones they won’t? And how do they keep their personal news selections out of the news?
According to media specialist David Greenberg of New York University, journalists develop their own code of ethics. These ethics guide how a news organisation covers certain topics. They also dictate whether or not they will publish bad news about a public figure. Greenberg points out that the media has “developed an infrastructure around itself, whereby stories are tested before being distributed.” This “good news” code then dictates what constitutes news and what is suitable for distribution.
As a result, journalists can fall into the unethical habit of choosing stories concerning their own interest, rather than those of others. This can be as simple as passing along information that benefits their personal ego. Or they may choose to publish stories that are slanted towards pushing a specific political party. They may go to great lengths to cover stories that are damaging to a politician. All this, according to Greenberg, weakens the news agency’s credibility and often results in the loss of credibility of the entire institution.
It seems that the days of newspapers being a reliable and trustworthy source of news are coming to an end. With the proliferation of internet-based publications and increasing competition from online media, there is little wonder why many people are unhappy with the media. In an era where the internet has become everyone’s second line of defense against bad news, there is little reason to trust the “old media”. The final death knell for the printed page has come for the Daily Telegraph. Many people are simply not willing to place their faith and their reputation in the hands of self-styled journalists. Perhaps it’s time for them to move on to something else.