by Anthony Wile, The Daily Bell:
The Hill, not necessarily known as a conservative-leaning publication, has published an article entitled, “The shrinking impact of mainstream media,” by Patrick Maines. The article announces that the mainstream media is a “carrier” of left-leaning news and opinion, and of Democratic viewpoints, generally.
Maines is the president of the Media Institute. According to the organization’s literature, “The Media Institute is a nonprofit research foundation specializing in communications policy issues. The Institute exists to foster three goals: freedom of speech, a competitive media and communications industry, and excellence in journalism.”
The Institute seems fairly well connected, with numerous important media types sitting on its board. But despite his organization’s own exposure to mainstream media, Maines puts forth some maverick opinions in this article. He seems to believe the mainstream media is doomed. It has the feeling of an important piece of journalism and was posted for several days on Drudge. Here’s an excerpt:
The bottom line is that perhaps one-half of the potential audience for these media outlets holds negative opinions about them. This practice confounds most people’s understanding of the marketing of mass products.
It’s not what explains why the reporters and editors don’t care that they are perceived as biased. They don’t care because the overwhelming majority of them are Democrats and/or liberals, and they think their point of view is both objective and correct.
Maines then tries to figure out why the owners of media corporations don’t make more of an effort to provide a balanced approach to news and information. He speculates that it is hard for the heads of corporations and their immediate assistants to “exercise control” over the editorial end of the business without being accused of unethical meddling.
He also speculates that corporate CEOs may actually agree with the left-leaning bias of the mainstream media. Finally, he offers the idea that editorial biases are woven into the texture of modern journalism to such a degree that it is difficult or impossible to do much about them.
What makes Maines’s article compelling is his contention that the challenges to biased, mainstream journalism have now reached a critical mass. “It’s unlikely that this state of affairs will go on much longer without notable consequences for the mainstream media,” he writes. Why? Because of the explosive growth, “courtesy of the Internet,” of conservative and libertarian publishing outlets.
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