Media accuracy

Essay by isabellamargaret June 2007

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ESSAY # 1: In your experience, how accurate has the media been in reporting news and events? Please give specific examples in your answer.

In my experience, the media has not been reporting news and events very accurately. A lot of different things come together to make this true. Like it mentioned in the reading, it mostly stems from the fact that corporate executives are more concerned with making the big dollar than telling the real story. It seems that every mistake a reporter makes can be traced back to that. It may be preconceiving an assignment, fabricating events to make your story more interesting, or just wanting the story so bad that you don’t check your sources.

While sitting down to write this essay, I turned the television on to watch the news. I first tuned in to CNN, and then switched over to Fox News to watch On The Record.

Greta Van Susteren was interviewing someone about an attack on a family in Irvine, California. The interviewee clearly stated that one body had already been identified as the daughter and the other was believed to be the father, but had not yet been identified. Immediately after the interview, Greta repeated back the information, but said that both bodies had been identified as the father and daughter. This just proves that Fox News is willing to go out on a limb and report something as news even if they don’t know all the facts.

Fox News is not the only network to do things like this. That was just one small example in a sea of other media errors. Sadly, I don’t think this problem will ever get any better. It will always be more about making the high dollar than telling the real facts.