June 5, 2023

The news is everywhere these days – from TV screens to phones and on our social media platforms. You can’t escape it.

With the increase in media consumption, the way news outlets reach viewers has drastically changed, and not always in a good way. Some news organizations are choosing the information they provide to the public based on what will get the most views or clicks online, not what is accurate.

For example, a report was done by the Washington Post in August that said Trump officials have denied passports to Latin Americans along the southern border because they worry the documents could have been falsified. The article contained false information and was later revised so many times the Post had to add an editor’s note to explain the changes. The fact this occurred at a major news corporation in the first place is unacceptable.

This goes to show some re- porters and media outlets can be so blinded by disliking someone, they may overlook standards they usually would follow.

A study done by Gallup and the Knight Foundation showed 62 percent of Americans perceive the news they see on tele- vision, read in newspapers and hear on the radio as biased.

Fox News, MSNBC, CNN and other news outlets have been accused many times by each other and the public of being strongly biased on opposite ends of the political spectrum, without attempting to hide it.

To determine if the media you are consuming is biased, look at the bigger picture — not just the questions the reporter asked but the people they interview and ask yourself if they are credible.

I do not expect the media to change overnight, but I encourage everyone to educate them- selves on topics by pulling from multiple news sources such as press conferences and news releases. Ask questions based on the information presented and try to find alternative motives or information gaps in the story.

Comparatively, when studying in an academic field, your professor will require you to use primary sources to back up your opinion or stance. You can make an assertion as long as there is valid evidence to support the assignment.

This is the way readers should look at the news media today.

Yes, it is great people watch FoxNews, MSNBC or CNN but if you are not also consuming news from different organizations, then you are only getting one media outlet’s take.

When the media stops doing its job correctly or get lazy, it is up to the people to call them on it and tell them to straighten up. It is time to straighten up.

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