Saturday, June 17, 2006

My First Linkdump, Part 1

Throughout my travels across the vast reaches of cyberspace, I frequently run across stories, columns, and reports that catch my attention but somehow manage to escape blogical scrutiny. So, I figured I'd do a series of short takes on all the unbroken links gathering digital moss in my Blogger drafts file since August. Here's part 1 (dates indicate when I found the item):

Network television reporters systematically ignore rural America, and then wonder why John and Jane Redstate don't trust them. Nothin' like a strong dose of media underrepresentation to make you really feel special. (9/29/05)

Last year, Newark mayor Sharpe James and the City Council hired a local newspaper to publish a weekly rags-worth of positive propaganda about the city's new community initiatives. Let's hope new mayor-elect Cory Booker will work to create good news the old-fashioned way instead of just purchasing adspace. (11/16/05)

From Knight-Ridder's Washington Bureau, a field observation of the media actually doing its job . . . James Kuhnhenn and Jonathan S. Landay compare several of Bush and Cheney's assertions about Iraq to the factual record and actually dare to call some of them "untrue." Come back and read this next time the state of modern American journalism has got you down. (11/17/05)

Jack Shafer wrote yet another column about the future of the news industry back in January, but this one contains a link to a fascinating, brief scholarly history of newspaper technology innovation and industry consolidation. In short: the rise of blogs has dramatically lowered the entry barriers to the journalism business, and traditional newspapers have every reason to worry about their free-falling market share. No shit. (01/31/06)

Creationists and IDers are developing new rhetorical strategies to deal with a society that's gravitating away from their preferred accounts of human origins. Unfortunately, these techniques basically boil down to "well, you weren't there, so you can't prove it," which, if taken seriously, would toss out all pre-20th century history accounts along with dinosaurs and the Big Bang. (2/11/06)

The Bush administration spent over $1.4 billion on advertising contracts (i.e. spin) in the 2.5 years prior to February 2006.
I guess they don't call it the propaganda presidency for nothing. (2/16/06)

A recent paper by two University of Chicago economists offers evidence that media bias has less to do with ideology than concordance with the audience's prior beliefs. Tensions between the desire not to alienate the reader/viewer and the need to come off as credible frame the pursuit and presentation of journalistic "fact." Relevant as I believe lines of research such as these to be, I somehow doubt they'll convince the professional peanut-pelters at outfits like Accuracy in Media and Media Matters. (4/05/06)

More collected bloglets to come in Part 2.