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    Your Elvenar Team

"Just the facts, Mam"

Valtitude

Active Member
Sadly, everything appears to be a "wall of text" to many readers if it's not a hard hitting headline, pithy remark, mantra or meme. Small, short, easy to remember in support of what they feel is right. Everything else is just too much work!

Democracy is hard work and the concept of "a well informed citizenry" was used to justify the freedom of the 4th estate. Sadly the 4th estate has become more and more interested in their own ability to change things than their responsibility to be accurate and as unbiased as possible.

AJ
Newspapers have always plugged the stories that will make money for them. Helps pay for the real news most people ignore from actual journalists.
" ... but I saw it on ***, read it in ***, it was online ".
Also, the naive among us have always believed what they see/ saw in newspapers, magazines on television, heard on the radio, read on Facebook, Twitter or Parler etc, because well, people aren't discerning of facts. They believe what they want to believe. IE: The National Enquirer.
Also, facts are often not either black or white. Very little in our existence on planet Earth, in this Universe, is all or nothing.
 

ajqtrz

Well-Known Member
Also, facts are often not either black or white. Very little in our existence on planet Earth, in this Universe, is all or nothing.
That's my argument in a nutshell. Facts are never black and white because they can be confirmed by anyone observing them. So in my example if two people were standing at the edge of the pond and each counted accurately they'd have the same number of ducks (or was it geese?). Reporters are supposed to present facts -- they are our eyes and ears at the scene -- but are trained to tell stories -- as one television reporter said, "we weave a story from the facts, not all the fact, but the facts that make the story interesting." The weaving of the story is the problem as most reporters have the story half written before they do the observation of the event. They've already pitched it to the editor to get the permission to do the story, and thus, they often see/hear the facts that support the story and sometimes don't even see/hear that which does not. The expected story filters contradictory fact out and that means we aren't getting accurate reporting. And it's even worse. There are, as in the court system, two prevailing methods of judging what you are seeing. You can judge it and frame it in the traditional way -- meaning you will tend to be conservative in your reporting -- or you can be and "activist" journalist, and frame the story with some future goal in mind. The former often fails to recognize there is something wrong with things since things "as they are" are preferred to things as they could be, while the later tends to see wrong in every story, no matter how minor, emphasises that :"wrong" and believes it's their job to correct the wrong. The former are sleeping, the later are firebrands wanting to burn the house down.

But of course we readers demand a story. We don't want the facts alone as facts, like history, are boring. So we are given stories and if those stories are filtered through the desire to either keep things as they are or move things along in the "right" direction, that's the price we pay for not wanting "just the facts."

And sadly the advent of social media journalism and lowering of the standards of professional journalism has meant that the two "sources" have become more and more the same. In my opinion there are very, very few professional journalists out there. Most are political hacks who want their side to win and see everything in light of "what story will enhance my side" to the point that they pick only "facts" (it matters not if the thing actually happened or not -- somebody just has to say it did) - that help them weave their story -- the one where their side is the hero and the other the villain -- and just ignore everything else as "propaganda" that has been shown to be "false," or at least "mostly false."

AJ