The term "mainstream media" (often abbreviated "MSM") generally refers to the most popular conventional sources of factual (non-fiction) news and discussion, i.e. television and print media (newspapers and magazines). It also refers to any information published, via whatever media, by companies whose primary business is one or more of those traditional media.
The term appears to be more intensively used in the United States, where the largest media companies are privately-owned and have no significant competition from government-run services or from each other – and, unfortunately, very little accountability as to the accuracy of those views.
- Distortion in the mainstream media are particularly harmful.
- media consolidation
this is a partial list
- The New York Times
- The Wall Street Journal
- The Washington Post
- The Washington Times (aka The Moonie Times)
- Conservapedia sees the revocation of the fairness doctrine and the beginning of Rush Limbaugh's radio career as the two main events in the history of the MSM; also, there is apparently a "leftist news" where writers are only allowed to write what they are told (as opposed to Conservapedia, where you just get reverted or banned if you write anything they don't like)
dKosopedia: no equivalent page (as of 2009-02-13); see Media.
- 2010-12-09 [L..T] Voters Say Election Full of Misleading and False Information Those who watched Fox News almost daily were significantly more likely than those who never watched it to believe that a number of false statements relevant to the election were, in fact, true.
- 2011-07-19 [L..T] 1 Million Dead in Iraq? 6 Reasons the Media Hide the True Human Toll of War -- And Why We Let Them
- 2011-07-23T14:52:00 [L..T] Norway, Islam and the threat of the West Interestingly, this criminal is described by one unnamed Norwegian official as a "madman". He may well be, but this is one way that the motivations for heinous crimes can be airbrushed out of the story before they have the chance to take hold in the popular imagination.
- 2012-05-03 [L..T] What you know depends on what you watch: Current events knowledge across popular news sources "The largest effect is that of Fox News: all else being equal, someone who watched only Fox News would be expected to answer just 1.04 domestic questions correctly – a figure which is significantly worse than if they had reported watching no media at all."
- 2013-10-12 [L..T] Despite what you may have heard in the press, Germany's transition to renewable power has been a stunning success. Energy analyst Chris Nelder runs down the facts. "Major English-language media have been propagating a false narrative about the stunning success of Germany's transition to renewable energy: the Energiewende. To hear them tell it, the transition has been a massive failure, driving up power prices, putting Germany's grid at risk of blackouts, and inspiring a mass revolt against renewables. Nothing could be further from the truth."
- 2014-05-02 [L..T] Images and Video from East Ukraine that the Corporate Media Will Never Show You "Today the provisional government in Kiev launched a military offensive against the eastern city of Slavyansk using tanks and helicopters, but the mainstream media will never show you what actually happened."
- 2014-05-14 [L..T] How Five American Companies Control What You Think
- 2014-05-14 [L..T] Glenn Greenwald: U.S. Corporate Media is "Neutered, Impotent and Obsolete"
- 2011-04-28 [Talk|Index] Obama Administration punishes reporter for using multimedia § “White House officials have banished one of the best political reporters in the country from the approved pool of journalists covering presidential visits to the Bay Area” for filming protesters interrupting an Obama fundraiser.”
- 2010-08-01 [Talk|Index] Julian Assange, monk of the online age who thrives on intellectual battle § “By last Wednesday, President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan had branded Assange "irresponsible". And by Friday, the US defence secretary, Robert Gates, had accused him of "having blood on his hands". Their charge was that WikiLeaks has disclosed the names of Afghan collaborators who may now be subject to reprisals...”
- 2010-07-21 [Talk|Index] Google Tells FTC Enforcing "Hot News" Would Create a Hot Mess § “The draft document includes proposed changes to intellectual property laws to protect news entities from aggregators (such as Google News), a loosening of anti-trust laws to allow media outlets to collaborate on paywalls and other methods of charging for the news, as well as a proposal for government subsidization of the industry.”
- 2010-04-28 [Talk|Index] My Defamation 2.0 Experience § “Today, past defamatory allegations based on an anonymous smear letter which distorted and misrepresented early online comments and writings of mine, were resurrected by Fox News. I want to say definitively: I do not defend nor support acts of sexual violence against children and have never defended pedophilia in any way.”
- 2009-10-12 [Talk|Index] CNN Leaves It There § Stewart highlights CNN's tendency to juxtapose a reasonable viewpoint with an unreasonable one and then "leave it there", leaving the viewer with the impression that both viewpoints are equally valid.
- 2009-09-29 [Talk|Index] Hanging citizen journalists out to dry - shield-law amendment excludes unpaid bloggers § The Free Flow of Information Act is intended to prevent journalists from being forced to divulge confidential sources, except in cases such as witnessing crimes or acts of terrorism -- but specifically excludes citizen journalists (aka bloggers) from being considered as "journalists", and would enshrine this definition in federal law.
- 2009-09-08 [Talk|Index] Matthew Dowd's False Equivalence: Obama Hatred Equals Bush Hatred § “In Matthew Dowd's world, the left being upset about [long list of scandalous actions by the Bush-Cheney administration] is exactly the same as the right wing freaking out over a speech given to school children by President Obama. I don't think so.”
- 2009-08-14 [Talk|Index] False ‘Death Panel’ Rumor Has Some Familiar Roots § “the rumor – which has come up at Congressional town-hall-style meetings this week in spite of an avalanche of reports laying out why it was false – was not born of anonymous e-mailers, partisan bloggers or stealthy cyberconspiracy theorists [but rather] from many of the same pundits and conservative media outlets that were central in defeating President Bill Clinton's health care proposals 16 years ago, including the editorial board of The Washington Times, the American Spectator magazine and Betsy McCaughey...”
- 2009-07-27 [Talk|Index] Chris Mooney is Not My Friend Anymore § “It was not until a Boston Globe article in which Mooney and Kirshenbaum place the blame and responsibility squarely on the shoulders of scientists that the camel’s back broke.”
- 2009-06-03 [Talk|Index] Project Expose MSM Reports § “Mr. Isikoff's story [in Newsweek] instead advanced the FBI's already-discredited point of view that the FBI's Translation Division's problems could be summed up as a 'shortage.' The article completely ignored and omitted established cases, problems, and severe weaknesses in the FBI's background security check of applicant translators, security measures in preventing espionage and security breaches, and quality control for translated work.”
- 2009-06-02 [Talk|Index] Governor Bush told Houston Journalist: If Elected "I'm Going to Invade Iraq" § “(Bush) said he wanted to [invade Iraq], and the reason he wanted to do it is he had been led to understand that you could not really have a successful presidency unless you were seen as commander-in-chief, unless you were seen as waging a war.”
- 2009-05-04 [Talk|Index] In Congress We Trust... Not § “The people do indeed look at Washington and know that this city is 'badly' broken ... Activists scream about promised hearings that never took place – without explanation. They express outrage when investigations are dropped without any justification. And they genuinely wonder out loud why, especially after they helped secure a major victory for the Democrats.”
- 2008-09-17 [Talk|Index] News Tip: Experiments Show Media Fact-Checking Could Backfire § “What we found is that corrections are ineffective for the group most likely to have the misperception. Even worse, we found that those people may actually end up believing in the misperception more strongly after hearing a correction.”
- 2008-07-21 [Talk|Index] T.V. Got A Lot Worse Today § “The 90 million people watching the Super Bowl, many of them children, heard Justin Timberlake sing, "Gonna have you naked by the end of this song," as he reached for Jackson's bustier. So having a man on television seemingly forcibly ripping clothes off of a woman during a song with millions of children watching isn't shocking.”
- 2008-07-18 [Talk|Index] Girls gone guilty: Evolutionary psych on sex #2 § “That is, if you went in with a different framework for explanation – like, "too many guys in one-night stands don't know how to satisfy women" or "women are better at sex than men" – you could construct another story around this data that was ... more plausible than 'women are programmed to want long-term relationship'...”
- 2008-07-10 [Talk|Index] The Week That Should Have Ended McCain's Presidential Hopes § “During this past week: McCain called the most important entitlement program in the U.S. a disgrace, ...,released an economic plan that no one thought was serious, ...flip flopped on Iraq, joked about the deaths of Iranian citizens, and denied making comments that he clearly made -- TWICE. Yet watching and reading the mainstream press you would think McCain was having a pretty decent political week...”
- 2008-07-09 [Talk|Index] Photoshop of Horrors: The Frightful Faces of Fox News § “...Fox & Friends, the Fox News program hosted by Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade, ...aired doctored photos of two New York Times reporters who had dared to write semi-critically of Roger Ailes's right-leaning cable network.”
- 2008-07-07 [Talk|Index] When Fox News Is the Story § “Like most working journalists, whenever I type seven letters – Fox News – a series of alarms begins to whoop in my head: Danger. Warning. Much mayhem ahead.”
- 2008-06-22 [Talk|Index] Lara Logan, I Tip My Smack-o-Matic 3000 to You § “You know, I was asked once, 'Do you feel responsible for the American public having a ... a negative view of the war in Iraq?' And I looked at the reporter and I said, 'Tell me the last time you saw the body of a dead American soldier. ... Who in America knows what that looks like? Because I know what that looks like, and I feel responsible for the fact that no one else does.'”
- 2008-06-10 [Talk|Index] Countdown: The Impeachment Of George W. Bush § “Ohio Democratic Congressman Dennis Kucinich spent some 290 minutes on the House floor Monday, reading Articles of Impeachment against President George Bush. Not that you would notice, as there was a virtual media blackout on the story, but Keith Olbermann ran with it right out of the gate...”
- 2008-04-21 12 Answers to Questions No One Is Asking About Iraq
- 2008-02-21 [Talk|Index] The Great Guantánamo Puppet Theater § “Specific accusations concerning the roles played by each of the six in the tragedy of 9/11 were all over the media. For the most part, the media has only lightly embroidered the Pentagon's script.”
- 2008-02-11 [Talk|Index] How the spooks took over the news § “For the first time in human history, there is a concerted strategy to manipulate global perception. And the mass media are operating as its compliant assistants, failing both to resist it and to expose it.”
- 2007-12-28 [Talk|Index] Hillary Clinton and Ron Paul winning big on AOL straw poll § “An AOL straw poll that is supposed to be spam proof shows both Hillary Clinton and Ron Paul winning their respective primaries. ... On the Democratic side the results somewhat mirrored media generated polls. Nationally Clinton has 46%, Barack Obama 27%, John Edwards 17%, Biden 4%, Kucinich 3%, Richardson 2%, Gravel 1%, and Dodd 1%.”
- 2007-08-08 [Talk|Index] The Unseen Lies: Journalism As Propaganda § “In 1983 the principle global media was owned by 50 corporations, most of them American. In 2002 this had fallen to just 9 corporations. Today it is probably about 5. Rupert Murdoch has predicted that there will be just three global media giants, and his company will be one of them.”
- 2007-07-06 [Talk|Index] Shame on Bush – and Us § “Like freed hostages who gradually cease to identify with their captors, mainstream media outlets seem to have been seized by a new spirit of liberation in their coverage of the Bush administration.”
- 2006-11-13 [Talk|Index] BANNED Pres. Bush Interview § “This is a video I found of an Irish TV interview with President Bush. I later found out that this interview was not shown on American television because it was banned! Why you ask, take a look and see...” Commentary: Ben Cohen
- 2006-09-14 [Talk|Index] Media ownership study ordered destroyed § “The Federal Communications Commission ordered its staff to destroy all copies of a draft study that suggested greater concentration of media ownership would hurt local TV news coverage, a former lawyer at the agency says.”
- 2006-08-15 [Talk|Index] Is Bush an "Idiot"? § “Is the President of the United States, George W. Bush, an idiot? Scarborough Country asks the forbidden question. They look at his inability to speak correctly, not at his inability to lead correctly, however. Of course the real question is, is the Republican Party full of idiots because they nominated the sucker, and continue to blindly follow his crap?” Host Joe Scarborough, a former Republican congressman, seems to be leaning towards "yes"; his two panelists debate the issue with some substance. The "con" side is basically "he's just inarticulate, not stupid"; the "pro" side raises the point: How can you tell, based on his actions? Also, is it sheer coincidence that Scarborough Country was canceled only a few months later?
- 2006-05-18 [Talk|Index] Uncovering Project Censored § “There once was a time when you couldn’t trust anyone over 30. Today, some are wondering if that isn’t true of Project Censored.”
- 2005-08-22 [Talk|Index] A Funny Little Story About The Media § “At the time, I remember thinking this: 1. How interesting that the DC press corps knows grimy details about lots of politicians but only chooses to tell the great unwashed when they decide it's appropriate. 2. How interesting that the DC press corps feels it's their place to make decisions for the rest of America; ie, rather than laying out the evidence that Hart was weird, flaky, etc., and letting Americans decide whether they cared, they decided run-of-the-mill citizens couldn't be trusted to make the correct evaluation. 3. How interesting that Cohen felt it was appropriate to tell all this to a small group of fresh-faced, ambitious, grotty Yale youths, but not to the outside world. And how interesting that we were being socialized into thinking this was normal.” Commentary: Teresa Nielsen Hayden
- 2001-09-26 [Talk|Index] We Must Retaliate: Blind Rage or Measured, Focused Rage? § a satire of the mainstream media push for retaliation in response to 9/11