Sunday, March 19, 2017

Best News Sources

The Columbia Journalism Review has published a new major study [1] that drives home the need for a means of creating criteria by which to judge valid sources of news. We as resistance fighters need this most of all since truth is our weapon. Can't wield truth as weapon if you don't know how to recognize it.

A major new study of social-media sharing patterns shows that political polarization is more common among conservatives than liberals — and that the exaggerations and falsehoods emanating from right-wing media outlets such as Breitbart News have infected mainstream discourse.
Though the report, published by the Columbia Journalism Review, does an excellent job of laying out the challenge posed by Breitbart and its ilk, it is less than clear on how to counter it. Successfully standing up for truthful reporting in this environment “could usher in a new golden age for the Fourth Estate,” the authors write. But members of the public who care about such journalism are already flocking to news organizations like The New York Times, The Washington Post, and, locally, The Boston Globe, all of which have experienced a surge in paid subscriptions since the election of President Trump. That’s heartening, but there are no signs that it’s had any effect on the popularity or influence of the right-wing partisan media.[2]

I am going to pull together some articles that take different approaches to the problem of crossing the best sources of  news, since the article says the study didn't solve it.Then I am going to present my own criteria and show which sources are may  favorites and why.

These article I chose because they had a more comprehensive approach to the issue than just "its popular,." First article is from a conservative  source of which I am critical, Business Insider, one reason I use it is because it doesn't tell, me only what I want to hear,

News outlets like CNN and ABC News might have the biggest audiences, but they're not the most trusted across-the-board in America.The most trusted news outlets in America, according to a new study from Pew Research Center, are actually British.BBC and The Economist top the list of outlets that are trusted by every ideological group, while BuzzFeed and The Rush Limbaugh Show are at the bottom.[3]
You don;t say! What a shocker. They offer a cool chart showing both trusted and distrusted and including many from BCC to Hanity (least trusted). Their major method is to follow Pew research study which I',getting to latter, (read the article).

Amy Mitchell writes an article for a Pew Research source reporting on their study. They take more than one approach which I think is very helpful. These approaches include (1)Popularity (2) didst vs just unknown (3) Trust to distrust ratio (4) spot the significance  between the differences, BBC makes it through all four. CNN starts out at the top but drops out in favor of NPR when distrust v unknown is adjusted for. In other words a lot of people distrust NPR because they don't know what it is,or they don't watch PBS., When we look at those who know NPR it is highly trusted. BBC Trust/distrust ratio is 36% trust 7% distrust. NPR is 29/7. 29% know and trjst, 75 know and distrust,.(READ)[4]

Chad Lorenz writes an article laying out a course he would design for a school of Journalism, or for any university about how to pick the media sources one trusts. His Aristotle is very important:

The course would guide students through the critical thinking necessary to determine how reliable a site is: How long has it existed? Has it won major awards or the favor of journalistic bodies like Poynter? What are the potential conflicts with its corporate parent? What are the backgrounds of its writers and editors? How much original reporting is the site doing? How often are its basic facts in agreement with similar coverage elsewhere? Students each would be randomly assigned a web-only publication to study and determine its level of trustworthiness on a 20-point scale based on these criteria.
While these rough categories are meant to provide a baseline understanding for what kinds of publications to trust, there are still reasons a reader should be skeptical about any piece of content, because no publication is immune to journalistic failures such as hidden bias, fabrication, plagiarism, and errors. At least one lecture of the class would be spent reviewing the high-profile scandals generated by journalists Janet Cooke (the Washington Post), Stephen Glass (the New Republic), Jayson Blair (the New York Times), Jack Kelley (USA Today), and Sabrina Rubin Erdely (Rolling Stone). In addition to those cases of fabrication, students would learn about key instances of bias and conflict of interest. A few good places to start: the Bush-era media-manipulation efforts, Judith Miller’s Iraq WMD reporting, and CBS News’ flawed “Rathergate” investigation of President Bush’s National Guard record.
Students would then learn just how much bias has become a hot-button issue in journalism lately, as the number and variety of news outlets has exploded to serve political views have become more polarized. In one assignment, students would be asked to analyze a print article and a news segment and identify potential signs of bias.[5]
 I urge all to read it,

Before going into my choices here are my credentials for deciding this, most of my face book Friends know of my academic career,PH,D candidate in history of ideas (UT Dallas) and MTS in theology,(SMU). What most may not know is that I was not only a Central America Activist in the 80s but also an activist for a media watch dog group called FAIR (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting). I was the North Texas organizer. I dealt with the press a lot in my activist days and I think I have a good sense of what makes for good source of news.

Popularity has nothing to do with it,I care about how wiling they are to dig for the story, how accessible they are able to make the major figures and principle players in the story. Who do they thinkers and intellectuals of the day listen to? I see part of this as reflected in awards. Awards are not a perfect measure they have their problems. But when a paper wins Pulitzer;s all the time it;s a good sign it;s a good paper,

Here are my major sources--the one;s I trust and use most in research;

I. NY Times

II. Washington Post



Those are sacrosanct. The next set i trust in general way but am usually highly critical of them. The old three tv net works's news plus some magazines like The New Yorker and the Atlantic, After that a big grain of salt the Guardian and Mother Jones, I don't ever mess with Huff post, I wouldn't use it for anything it;snot absorbent enough. Wall Street journal used to be up there with NYT but in recent years they have declined a lot.

The New York Times excels in all the criteria I gave above,it is the choice of the intellectuals for new papers,of course it doesn't rival academic publications, we are talking about News. It's been at the top of the heap for over 100 years, They have won 119 Pulitzer prizes since 1918.[6] The Washington post is right up there with it. They are both at the center of power,m New York and Washington DC, The Post broke Watergate and nursed the story all the way to Nixon;s near impeachment and designation, they have not abandoned that level of journalistic excellence. They have won thier share of awards as well. [7]

What you need to do with this knowledge is to research the issues of the day and spread it about in arguments agaisnt Trump and the Republican agenda every day on face book an in blogs and other places, Then  be sure and put in that capital switchboard number and call your congressman every day! you can tell your congressman about the articles you read in NYT. That's good to do.




[2] Ibid.






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