How News is Made, by Dale Dougherty http://www.boingboing.net/fakenews.html
There should be a book titled "How News Is Made," a book that could be for journalism what "The Jungle" was to the meatpacking industry. My version would offer no conspiracy theory, but I'd point out the preponderance of sloppiness and lazy thinking coupled with a herd mentality, most especially in business journalism. I found a great example to illustrate what I've been thinking about, tipped off by an article written by Carl Bialik in the Wall Street Journal. First, most of what we call "news" today starts out as a press release, which then becomes a headline, a sound-bite, and eventually a story. In a parallel to the way government operates, in which special interest groups lobby to create or defeat legislation, most of our news stories come as a result of PR efforts paid for by special interest groups (businesses) who have a stake in what becomes "news." (I'd love to come up with a taxonomy of stories by type just to show how few types there really are but that's a different point.) Second, reporters like to ask good questions for which there may not be good answers. However, they'll force an answer because you can't say "nobody knows." The third is that everybody loves numbers, regardless of where they come from, and these are the best kind of answers, regardless of whether the numbers are true. Bialik's article mentions a press release from the National Retail Federation, which concerns the holiday shopping over the Thanksgiving Weekend. < major snip > http://www.boingboing.net/fakenews.html You are a subscribed member of the infowarrior list. Visit www.infowarrior.org for list information or to unsubscribe. This message may be redistributed freely in its entirety. Any and all copyrights appearing in list messages are maintained by their respective owners.