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Skeptics of Tucson Message Board › MEDIA BIAS

MEDIA BIAS

A former member
Post #: 51
I was told that in his speech David Fitzsimmons when asked about Media Bias claimed that there is no bias. I would like to know how Mr. Fitzsimmons would explain the following:



You Have to Love Our Media


And the beat goes on and the nay-sayers persist in their intractable denial.

Headlines On This Date 4 Years Ago:

"Republicans spending $42 million on inauguration while troops Die in unarmored Humvees"

"Bush extravagance exceeds any reason during tough economic times"

"Fat cats get their $42 million inauguration party, Ordinary Americans get the shaft"




Headlines Today:

"Historic Obama Inauguration will cost only $120 million"

"Obama Spends $120 million on inauguration; America Needs A Big Party"

"Everyman Obama shows America how to celebrate"

"Citibank executives contribute $8 million to Obama Inauguration"



Nothing like fair & unbiased coverage of the news . . .
Don L.
AZAtheist
Group Organizer
Tucson, AZ
Post #: 135
Saul,

Did you hear Fitzsimmons say that there was no media bias? I don't remember him saying anything like that. I remember him saying that he has a definite bias and it's how he makes his living.

You can't make a decision based on headlines but they certainly do have represent a bias. Headlines are designed to evoke an emotional response.


A former member
Post #: 52
Don,

In my original posting I stated that "I was told" that Fitzsimmons said that there was no media bias. Unfortunately I was not able to attend that event; thus, it was not possible for me to hear him make that claim.

It is possible that I misunderstood, but Patsy told me about that at the last Atheist Meeting.

I can't see why one can not make a decision based on headlines. It is true that they are designed to evoke an emotional response. But what response they attempt elicit indicates the bias.
Don L.
AZAtheist
Group Organizer
Tucson, AZ
Post #: 136
Saul,

I know that you understand my point in asking you if you heard the statement. This is the Skeptics of Tucson Meetup group and we should be all about the critical thinking. What logical fallacy were you employing when you started out your argument with "I heard that you said 'XXX", then how do you explain 'YYY'?"

Media bias is a given. You gave examples from the Daily Star and I could show you counter examples of bias from Fox News. As skeptics and critical thinkers we should not be making decisions based on the headlines. Take your first headline. I don't have it in front of me now but it says words to the effect that $42 million spent on inauguration while soldiers need more armor to keep them safe. That headline is totally misleading and factually suspect. What is counted in the 42 Million dollars? Is the 42 Million dollars taxpayer money or donations from the Republican supporters? Why don't we have better armor for the troops. Is the inauguration in any way related to the supplying of troops on the battle field. Who makes the decision to spend 42 million dollars on an inauguration? Are they the same people making decisions to up-armor our troops? I can't make a decision based on that headline without knowing what it is talking about.

Headlines appeal to bias. Due to my bias when I read a headline, I may get an entirely different meaning than the next person because I would fill in the blanks of meaning in a different way than the next person.

A former member
Post #: 53
Don,

You are right. I made a mistake. I should not have assumed that what I was told was true even if it was provided by a credible person. I should have checked to see if it could be confirmed.

The reason I brought up the issue is that I have often heard statements made by various journalists that there is no liberal bias in the major media. I think there is. I think you are right in your observation that Fox has a bias which I believe would be conservative.

I think it is important to recognize that there is a bias, and to keep that in mind when reading not only the headlines but the article that follows.

Saul
Don L.
AZAtheist
Group Organizer
Tucson, AZ
Post #: 137
Saul and others,

Perhaps we should do a session on media bias. I have in mind a program to help the modern skeptic to compensate for the media bias, to understand how it affects the news and how to separate the data from the extrapolation. Any interest?
A former member
Post #: 54
Don.

Great idea. Just don't do it at the next meeting on Feb. 4, 2009 since I probably will not be able to make it.

Saul
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