State of the Media
March 14, 2005 7:01 AM   Subscribe

Project for Excellence in Journalism Report NYT: The annual Project for Excellence in Journalism report on the state of the media says that the use of anonymous sources in newspapers has dropped significantly over the last year. USAT: Non-traditional media gaining ground, consumers. LAT: Study warns of "junk news" diet. E&P: Survey finds newspapers slipping, facing cutbacks. WaPo: Study finds no shortage of opinion on Fox News.
posted by psmealey (8 comments total)
The report said that the percentage of Americans who saw the press as fair to Mr. Kerry dropped by six points from the number who thought the press was fair to Al Gore, the Democratic candidate in 2000. And the percentage who thought the press was unfair to Mr. Kerry rose by seven points over the number who thought the press was unfair to Mr. Gore. The percentage who thought Mr. Bush was treated fairly dropped by nine points from four years earlier, and the percentage who thought the press was unfair to him rose by 10 points.

The public continues to see the news media in a negative light but now adds bias to its bill of complaints against reporters.

"What appears to be rising now is the charge of bias, largely a case of both sides of the political spectrum seeing the press as unfair to their views," the report said. Republicans deride the press as liberal, the report said, while liberals "deride it as cowed by Republicans" and bloggers "deride it as out of touch.

posted by psmealey at 7:02 AM on March 14, 2005

See also: A New Age of Prepackaged TV News
posted by muckster at 7:16 AM on March 14, 2005

Btw, that USA Today piece was written by the improbably named Peter Johnson. I wonder if that's an alias.
posted by psmealey at 7:24 AM on March 14, 2005

Before the Fox bashing gets out of control, this statement was also in the report:

When it came to the campaign, on the other hand, the criticism that George Bush got worse coverage than John Kerry is supported by the data.2 Looking across all media, campaign coverage that focused on Bush was three times as negative as coverage of Kerry (36% versus 12%) It was also less likely to be positive (20% positive Bush stories, 30% for Kerry).

That also meant Bush coverage was less likely to be neutral (44% of Bush stories, 58% for Kerry).

posted by Durwood at 8:49 AM on March 14, 2005

It is not just US journalists who are currently fretting about the public's level of trust in their chosen profession/trade. In today's Guardian, editor, Alan Rusbridger worries that: "Out there - in society at large - there are wider concerns about the media: a convergence of presentational techniques, a sense that market forces increasingly determine content; and a widespread feeling that newspapers are failing in their duty of truly representing the complexity of some of the most important issues in society."

His solution? A dedicated academy, similar to New York's Columbia School of Journalism or maybe the relatively unknown European Centre for Journalism. But can such academies really foster greater public trust and - just as significantly - arrest declining sales in Europe?
posted by MrMerlot at 8:54 AM on March 14, 2005

Study finds no shortage of opinion on Fox News.

Well duh.
posted by clevershark at 9:32 AM on March 14, 2005

No, Peter Johnson is his real name, and he's a good guy..
posted by etaoin at 10:05 AM on March 14, 2005

I want Walter Cronkite to draw up a course on "How To Act Like A Reporter Instead Of An Ass Even Though You're On TV", then hire Mr. T and the A-Team to drive around smacking every single reporter across the face of the US with a newspaper while screaming "DIGNITY PLEASE!"
posted by schroedinger at 5:17 PM on March 14, 2005

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