Wednesday :: Apr 20, 2005

Why the Liberal Media Myth Persists - Part 1


by eriposte

I have written previously about How the Liberal Media Myth is Created. What I am going to examine next is the question of Why the Liberal Media Myth Persists. If you answered: "Right-wing media"/"bloggers"...I'd give you a C. That answer would be passable (because the right-wing media does play a role in keeping the myth alive), but is nowhere near complete. As a friend keeps pointing out, we need to be careful not to miss the forest for the trees.

Let me backtrack a bit.

I suspect my series on How the Liberal Media Myth is Created evoked two major types of responses. To most liberals and progressives who are readers of this blog, the reaction probably was:

"Well, I knew that. So what's the big deal with this series anyway?"

To most conservatives who are readers of this blog, the reaction probably was, "Yeah, right!" (to put it mildly). As of now, I'm blogging here to reach out to the former group - so let me say a couple of things to those of you who fit that bill. I will answer your question (yeah, the one I made up on your behalf :-)) in upcoming posts, and, I'm going to ask for your participation what I'm about to say in my future posts, because if you want to solve the dual problems of the liberal media myth and the insidious, corporatist media, you need to understand the real answer to the question:

Why does the "liberal media" myth persist?

Answer: Apart from the role of the right-wing media, it persists largely because of the role currently played of four groups of people - the people who matter the most in the media bias debate, the ones who have the ability to control the debate and change its terms.

1. Academics - who should be most concerned with the myth, as a matter of scientific integrity
2. Politicians on the left - who are most impacted by the myth (after the people of the US)
3. Influential, left-leaning opinion columnists/talking heads in mainstream media (especially those who take journalism seriously) - who have the most latitude to explode the myth
4. Honest front-line reporters and editors in the mainstream media - who are most subject to criticism because of the myth

I have listed the groups in the order of importance (1 being the highest). I'll explain why in my subsequent posts, where I will discuss each of these groups.

P.S. Do share your thoughts in the comments.

eriposte :: 8:42 AM :: Comments (7) :: Spotlight :: Digg It!