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  1. #41
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    You're right that your particular suggestion would strain credibility, but it's just not the issue here. The thing is, in any given month, there are more lurid things going on in this country than all of our news networks could report. The dubious part of the news coverage is which stories they bother to latch onto. For example, it is infamously noted that stories about missing victims almost always focus on attractive white women (unless they are children, which are still usually white). The media may have simply felt this wasn't sensational enough, or was too much trouble, compared to all the other options. This is a sick way to put it, but basically getting your tragedy some news coverage is a very competitive game.
    And disgusting as it is, there are some pretty obvious economic rationales for the unequal treatment between missing pretty white women stories and all other missing people cases-I just don't see an economic rationale for not sensationalizing this case, even compared to competing lurid tragedies.

    Incidentally, I agree with you about shootings, serial murders, etc. being overreported.

  2. #42
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Off Yahoo's front page news feed this morning....

    http://news.yahoo.com/4-reasons-medi...071000469.html

    4 reasons the media (mostly) ignores the Kermit Gosnell trial

    A rogue abortion doctor is accused of horrible crimes. And partisans on both sides point fingers over the ensuing media silence

    The gruesome murder trial of Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell entered its fifth week on Monday, as prosecutors continue to call witnesses as they seek the death penalty for Gosnell for allegedly killing a woman in a botched abortion, and seven babies born alive in illegal late-term procedures. Former patients and employees have testified in grisly detail about dangerous mistakes by poorly trained staff, and "beheadings" of infants delivered alive. Yet until recently, the awful story received little media attention. Commentators on the left and the right are accusing each other of looking the other way for political reasons. Here, four explanations analysts are giving for the shortage of coverage:

    1. It's just too gruesome for the front page
    2. Liberal journalists are covering it up
    3. Conservatives don't want to show what happens when women are denied options
    4. It's a local story that isn't really about abortion

    (with each point explained in more detail)
    Coverage about the lack of coverage. God Bless America!
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  3. #43
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Off Yahoo's front page news feed this morning....



    Coverage about the lack of coverage. God Bless America!
    The media's goal is to sell itself, so it loves any opportunity to make itself into a story.
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  4. #44
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    You're right that your particular suggestion would strain credibility, but it's just not the issue here. The thing is, in any given month, there are more lurid things going on in this country than all of our news networks could report. The dubious part of the news coverage is which stories they bother to latch onto. For example, it is infamously noted that stories about missing victims almost always focus on attractive white women (unless they are children, which are still usually white). The media may have simply felt this wasn't sensational enough, or was too much trouble, compared to all the other options. This is a sick way to put it, but basically getting your tragedy some news coverage is a very competitive game.

    I don't know how many people share my opinion, but honestly school shootings and serial killers are over-reported. I swear news coverage is almost inversely proportional to the importance of an issue. It's a part of what makes The Onion's trademark, extremely mundane stories funny.
    Agreed. The news media love sensationalism, and will milk isolated tragedies for all they are worth, with the caveats explained above. Even the local news focuses on the house fires, petty burglaries, etc. while ignoring the less exciting but more relevant activites of school boards and city councils. It is much harder to do a good job reporting on substantive issues, whether at the local or national level. If you have a bunch of dead children, you don't have to worry about Iraq, or the sequester, or food safety, even though these and similar issues will have far more impact on far more people than a single act of violence, however sensational.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  5. #45
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coriolis View Post
    Agreed. The news media love sensationalism, and will milk isolated tragedies for all they are worth, with the caveats explained above. Even the local news focuses on the house fires, petty burglaries, etc. while ignoring the less exciting but more relevant activites of school boards and city councils.
    Well, let's cut them a little slack. I actually DO see coverage of those things... except as a reader I find them hard to remember because of the mind-numbing minutia involved.

    What do readers remember? Emotionally evocative stories.

    I propose it's not just the media, it's also the readership with its selective memory because coverage of certain topics is easily forgotten while other coverage lingers in the mind based on the emotional power of the event. I mean, when the local news runs a story about new plumbing being installed in a public school next to some old lady getting hit by a car in front of the local super, which story does the readership remember and talk about?

    Now, if they are fixing the plumbing because all the toilets exploded last week and three students were injured, now it becomes something that lingers in the mind.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  6. #46
    insert random title here Randomnity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    Mostly to point out the extreme disparity between the coverage of this story and the coverage of equivalent types of stories, and to note that such an obvious operational bias (intentional or otherwise) should not be tolerated from ostensibly non-partisan or non-ideological news sources. If this was mostly unintentional oversight based on unconscious bias (which I assume to be the case in most instances), then something needs to be done about media culture and the institution processes through which news is filtered to the public. If its worse than that, then such media sources need to be exposed as agenda-driven outlets along the lines of the Nation or National Review.

    Oh, and I have no problem if the story happens to result in greater scrutiny of abortion providers or increased public opposition to late-term abortions, but seeing as different people interpret the same information in different ways, that's certainly not a definite outcome. Either way, people should be exposed to all the facts, without blatant double standards from news sources that claim objectivity. If they're going to sensationalize other lurid events with possible policy implications, they should do the same with this case.
    Ok, so your argument is that A) it's underreported relative to what it "should" be B) due to the media deliberately avoiding the story C) due to anti-abortion bias. And you have decided that C is absolutely true without any support for A or B, let alone for C.

    I will ignore points B and C for the time being since they aren't relevant at all unless A is actually true. I linked you to a number of sources reporting on the trial, and if you care to use google, I have no doubt that you can find dozens more. I would like to know the number of news articles on this topic that would make you satisfied that it's not "underreported". You are throwing around these vague accusations without offering any support in the face of evidence showing that there has been considerable coverage of the trial. This is not convincing and it is not conducive to intelligent discussion.

    Speaking of which,
    What is your goal in opposing equal coverage between objectively similar stories (in terms of the 'if it bleeds it leads' standard, especially with stories that just so happen to have policy implications, at least according to the perspective of large numbers of the public)?
    This kind of shit isn't conducive to intelligent discussions either. Knock it off. Even setting aside the obviously loaded question (I have not even expressed any opinions of my own here, but only pointed out that there is extensive coverage of this issue), you know perfectly well that there is no such thing as an "objectively similar" story because thankfully this kind of thing is extremely rare.

    Mass shootings and serial killers are certainly overreported compared to most other tragic events involving loss of life - including car accidents, food contamination, medical malpractice, child abuse, murders of prostitutes/hitchhikers/homeless people, etc etc etc. In fact, many of these events with equal or greater loss of life are covered far less in the media than this trial was/is. For whatever reason the media likes to talk a lot about events where people go into public and kill a bunch of strangers at random, and not so much about events that are equally tragic but less "random". My guess would be that there's an element of "it could have been me" that scares people and makes them want to find out more --> more reporting to satisfy that public desire for more information.

    Given the huge number of events involving death that are reported on less than mass shootings (or than this trial), it's both ridiculous and dishonest to jump immediately to "omg it's because he did abortions, LEFT-WING MEDIA CONSPIRACY" rather than "why do we care so much about mass shootings relative to other tragic deaths? what factors affect how much media coverage something gets?"
    -end of thread-

  7. #47
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Well, let's cut them a little slack. I actually DO see coverage of those things... except as a reader I find them hard to remember because of the mind-numbing minutia involved.

    What do readers remember? Emotionally evocative stories.

    I propose it's not just the media, it's also the readership with its selective memory because coverage of certain topics is easily forgotten while other coverage lingers in the mind based on the emotional power of the event. I mean, when the local news runs a story about new plumbing being installed in a public school next to some old lady getting hit by a car in front of the local super, which story does the readership remember and talk about?
    You are right about this, namely that the public want to hear the sensational stories. What they need to hear, however, are the more tedious stories about often behind-the-scenes actions that can profoundly impact themselves and their families. Many government entities operate under so-called sunshine laws, for instance, but these work only if the sun is allowed to shine on them. If people find these stories hard to remember because of the minutiae involved, then the reportage addressing them is lacking. Just listen to Nina Totenberg reporting on the Supreme Court, and you will see an outstanding example of how to make complex issues intelligible and memorable.

    In short: the media are lazy and greedy, and present the stories that are easy to report and "sell", rather than the stories that need to be told for the public good. If they waste their resources telling the public what they want to hear, who will tell them what they need to hear?
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  8. #48
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randomnity View Post
    I linked you to a number of sources reporting on the trial, and if you care to use google, I have no doubt that you can find dozens more.

    This kind of shit isn't conducive to intelligent discussions either. Knock it off. Even setting aside the obviously loaded question (I have not even expressed any opinions of my own here, but only pointed out that there is extensive coverage of this issue), you know perfectly well that there is no such thing as an "objectively similar" story because thankfully this kind of thing is extremely rare.
    Most of the links provided were either cursory summations, largely from two years ago, or obscure pro-choice rebuttals to equally obscure pro-life articles. Otherwise, all you have provided is essentially biased opinions claiming that the story is not underreported relative to similar stories, while the sources supporting the underreporting claim are largely from pro-choice journalist who simply perceive a media double-standard (which does not necessitate a deliberate, organized conspiracy to happen) regarding this story.

    And you know very well that by 'objectively similar cases' I am referring to highly lurid and shocking stories with high potential consumer interests and obvious, however tangential, associations with controversial national policy issues. At the very least, failing to recognize the salience and fascination this story holds for a large segment of the population is indicative of a problem within the mainstream media. And on the subject of statements not conducive to intelligent conversation, please refrain from using loaded terminology such as 'anti-choice' and 'bitching' if intelligent conversation is your aim, and I will make greater effort not to respond with loaded questions.

  9. #49
    insert random title here Randomnity's Avatar
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    oh my bad, I thought* you wanted to have an actual discussion about the topic you linked, not just rant about debunked conspiracy theories that the right-wing media seem to have decided are more interesting than the trial itself. I should have realized this was not the case from the total lack of any actual supporting evidence or logic, but I suppose I'm an optimistic soul.

    I'm out.














    *alright, not exactly thought, but I did have a faint glimmer of hope that it might be the case.
    -end of thread-

  10. #50
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    The media has a bias toward protecting those in power and making money. The only time the media does anything interesting is when those two goals conflict, which is pretty rare.
    Preach.

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