Media and Politics News Hunt Results
- One Angry Man - New Yorker
- Lost in Translation: Alhurra--America's Troubled Effort to Win Middle East Hearts and Minds - ProPublica / CBS News
- The Internet and the 2008 Election - Pew Research
- Barack Obama's Media Agenda - Broadcasting & Cable
- Reporters Say Networks Put Wars on Back Burner - New York Times
- McClatchy Washington bureau shines as bright example for online journalism - Online Journalism Review
- Obama's support for the FISA "compromise" - Salon
- Rating confusion: Is Obama a liberal? - PolitiFact
- Barack Makes More News Than McCain, But It's Not All Good - Journalism.org
- What Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer and Fred Hiatt mean by "bipartisanship" - Salon
These stories look at the relationship between media and politics from various angles, mostly focusing on where media coverage has been irresponsible, or even absent. But positive work was highlighted as well. The Online Journalism Review praised McClatchy for so often getting the story right in their piece "McClatchy Washington bureau shines as bright example for online journalism". NewsTrust host Jim Lang explained that the "interview presents the views of a McClatchy Washington bureau editor regarding the importance of a web site, the problems with polarization of the audience (seeking only news and views that they agree with), the interplay between a national bureau and individual papers and the value of 'grass roots' reporting."
The effects of the Internet on the media, and the political implications of a shifting media landscape, was a common thread through many of the top rated stories. Reviewer Paul Mena found much value in an analysis of the Pew survey on The Internet and the 2008 Election. Paul writes:
This is a good account about a very useful survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Report that shows the impact of Internet in the current presidential campaign. The results of the report deserve attention of journalists, media, scholars and politics. Especially interesting is the importance of political videos and social networking. I would have like for this news story to include more information from the survey about the use that the Obama and McCain's campaigns have given to the online world.
In a changing media landscape, the decisions made by the FCC, the agency charged with regulating telecommunications in the US, will have a major impact on what news Americans will have access to in the future. The trade magazine Broadcasting & Cable interviewed Presidential candidate Barack Obama on his ideas about FCC regulations. Reviewer Elizabeth White-Nadler rated this interview highly. She explains:
This is an informative interview about an extremely important subject. Since the public's perception about, literally, everything happening in the world is shaped by the media which provides (or fails to provide) their information, few policies are more important for a nominee to clarify. Eggerton did an excellent job in selecting questions for Obama and for the most part Obama answered them clearly. There were a couple of places where Eggerton should have prevented Obama from being intentionally vague; but on the whole, Obama's positions sound like a move in the right direction.
Our Partners - PolitiFact and Poynter
NewsTrust was honored to collaborate in this News Hunt with PolitiFact and the Poynter Institute. PolitiFact, a joint collaboration between The St. Petersburg Times and Congressional Quarterly, is a site dedicated to helping American voters cut through campaign rhetoric and spin. Their staff fact-checks the accuracy of speeches, TV ads, interviews and other campaign communications having to do with the 2008 U.S. election, and NewsTrust reviewers believe they do an excellent job. PolitiFact has a 3.9 preliminary NT source rating, making it one of the highest rated sources on NewsTrust.
The PolitiFact analysis piece, "Rating confusion: Is Obama a liberal?" is a prime example of the excellent journalism coming out of this organization. Long-time NewsTrust host Dale Penn had this insight about that story:
Here is a good reference article for anyone inclined to take as gospel any statistical analysis presented as news. The statistics can be skewed, the analysis can be skewed and therefore the story can be skewed. This is very good journalism as it may cause reviewers and readers to reconsider how much weight the put on evidence provided via polls or statistics.
Thanks to Bill Adair at PolitiFact for driving the News Hunt on their end. We look forward to featuring more great content from this site as the general election battle heats up. A big thanks also goes out to Ellyn Angelotti at the Ponyter Institute. Ellyn helped make this partnership happen and went beyond the call of duty to promote the News Hunt to the journalists and students at the Poynter Institute. We're very grateful to her for being such a wonderful partner, and to her colleague Bill Mitchell for helping guide our course as a NewsTrust Advisor.