Objectivity

David Weinberger writes on “Joho the Blog” that “transparency is the new objectivity“. In the post, he explains how journalists have traditionally strived to appear objective, but today’s bloggers typically go down a different path and aim for transparency. That is to say, a journalist will not openly reveal their biases (which sometimes grow into hidden agendas) but many bloggers will happily wear their allegiances on their sleeve.

The Gonzo Fist

It’s common knowledge that media outlets typically favour certain strains of politics over others, for example Fox News is famously Republican and were arguably responsible for perpetuating falsehoods about the Iraq war. In the UK, the Daily Mail leans heavily towards the right and publishes very questionable stuff about immigration, whilst the Guardian leans towards the left (and at least attempts to confine its political rants to the editorials).

However, none of these outlets openly say this. The Guardian claims to live by the words “A newspaper’s primary office is the gathering of news. At the peril of its soul it must see that the supply is not tainted.” I couldn’t find an equivalent statement on the Daily Mail’s website, but AND, their parent company (how much did that address cost?!), claims “Our mission is to be the most trusted and relevant focal point in every community we serve, ensuring the best outcomes for people when making the important decisions in their lives.” (Although this arguably makes no claims to objectivity assuming it doesn’t affect their trust or relevance).

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