Why do general public fail to weed out unprofessional press?

The whole idea behind freedom of the press (First Amendment in the US constitution) is that the press will help the general public keep an eye on the government. But as time went on, fair and balanced became some sort of slogan and while some press try very hard at presenting what they think is balanced (get an interview from each side, no analysis), some press or news media flat out forms the truth into what ever shape to push their perspective.

That’s fine and all. In a perfect world, the kind of hands off freedom means everything will work out kind of world, we, the people should be able to weed out these press by simply not watching them. But that obviously isn’t the case in this day and age. I am not just talking about the US, I am actually more concerned about the state of Taiwanese press and media.

Apple and other One Media press was already the best selling paper/weekly magazine, and yet they still can’t survive. As if that’s not bad enough, it then gets sold to the China leaning Wang Wang China Times media. In the US, Fox news is also owned by a foreign owner.

Is the system broken? How will democracy work when the population are being presented with half truths and informercials pretending as news?

How do we fix the system, and what is cause of this break down in the first place? Do we need more regulation or is it that people needs better education? Or is it simply that press and news need to find a new way of presenting the news?

I tried to explain this to my wife today and she thought it was okay, that Apple is crap and there are other papers. A lot of people don’t realize how many papers Want Want control already, their very pro China bias, and most people just don’t care. Of course the TV stations are all biased one way or the other but everybody hates Ma now :slight_smile:.

Fox and Rupert Murdoch’s empire is not a force for good , he has massive influence in the UK aswell.

What’s been happening is a lot of people skipping the mainstream media and going through citizen journal type online news aggregators. They get a lot of comments which help to give background and debate the story’s veracity. They are also very fast with the news. For my home country news I often check the citizen journal site first, and then check more in-depth articles off that.

You see the same thing happening with zerohedge and the financial discussion sites, you can learn a lot from them as long as you wade through the dross.

Most people don’t really watch the news or read anything so you are dealing with a lot of dumb-asses out there!

If that is true, that eventually people are leaving main stream media, how would these media change to adapt? People are leaving news paper and magazines for the internet aggregate sites, but on some level it seems people will always watch TV news. People tend to keep it on in restaurants and such.

Another thing is, even if biased media doesn’t make any money it doesn’t really matter. Politically motivated giants such as Want Want can let their press lose all the money they want, as long as their poison is pushed to a portion of the masses. Apple was already the most popular news paper in Taiwan, where Want Want owned China Times is one of the least popular, yet the acquisition is reversed. I think the same can be said about Fox news and Rupert Murdoch.

In that case, is switching to the aggregators really enough?

Fox News is not owned by a foreigner. Though originally an Australian (and not the best ambassador), Rupert Murdoch became an American to develop his business in the States.

For a man like Murdoch, i’d say he true allegiance lies where he puts most of his money.

People are buying opinions. The Apple Daily is a business. It must be successful, or else it is a puppet of a bigger company.

In the UK we are now arguing about the issue of the press. Should it be public or should it be private? Who should it serve? The owner or the government? Where in the world is there free press? Spain? Italy? Liberia? Costa Rica? North America? GTFOOH.

You spend 20p on a bit of paper to get you through the day. Who should be responsible for telling you what to think? Well YOU should. But then again, we don’t really have any clue what is best for us. If we did we’d all be sat about smoking weed, laughing and being nice to each other. Choose your poison, just know it is poison.

I think that Leveson Inquiry debate was quite interesting. The official statement is that the strawthat broke the camel’s back allegedly was the “hacking of a murdered 13 year olds phone”, revealing SOP practices in place that blurred the line between spy work and trial by press. I would say someone important’s toes were crushed, or competition was too fierce, but still, as per the conclusions, seems a paper tiger is all they got.
More here: levesoninquiry.org.uk/
official-documents.gov.uk/do … 0/0780.asp

On mere market forces, we cannot expect the public to act on its best interests -i.e. choose ethical presss. On mere bottom line concerns, we will keep on getting the bottom of the barrel.

The Leveson inquiry is a sham. There are a number of people who feel the press should be state owned. They have been feeling like this for a long time. The phone hacking was a perfect way for them to push this agenda. It has now been proved that The Sun did not alter/delete the mobile phone messages of Milly Dowler. The whole thing rests on that, but nobody seems to give a shit now. Even Hugh Grant is back drinking in the pub where his bessy mate was spying on him. There was a nice pic of Hugh holding the guys newborn baby the other day. Leveson and his cronies are all in the pocket of a few people. It is a self serving exercise in corruption. I know it makes me sound like a nut job to espouse such views, but it will be public knowledge soon enough.
Fair play to David Cameron, he doesn’t want a bar of the whole shitty debacle. He is calling for a middle ground of better legislation when things go awry. Otherwise he’ll go down in history as the man who either killed free press and made it a govt puppet, or the man who let filth run flow free through the streets.

There’s no news like no news.

The internet is a good thing. I’m glad my options aren’t Fox vs CNN vs BBC.

Most people the world over want entertainment.

Among my Taiwanese Facebook friends there is a vocal but very small minority (<4%?) who have expressed concern over the sale of Next Media. For the other ninety-odd percent I suspect it’s life as normal. The protests have been insignificant.

Half the Taiwanese I know will probably welcome this buyout because it helps the KMT. One young guy recently told me that he wants reunification so that Taiwan stands within an increasingly powerful China. He resents the wealth and power of countries like Japan and Korea, not to mention the West, and I think Taiwan’s military and diplomatic position in the world deeply embarrasses him. Others may simply think unification will be good for business and their stock market portfolios. In my adult classes I often talk about democracy and freedom of information, but they don’t. And they don’t seem to expect very much from the press, not even simple things like reliable polling. One lady - a high level bureaucrat - said to me once that, “Life was better under martial law.” And she wasn’t joking. These days she watches a lot of TVBS. :laughing:

I’m not very optimistic about the traditional media because it relies on advertising revenue and most Taiwanese companies also have operations in China. Why would a business want to shoot itself in the foot by advertising in an independent newspaper that, naturally, antagonizes Beijing? And who would even think about starting a paper or television station with such aspirations?

Anyway, I think it’s is more interesting to follow developments in China than Taiwan now that we are all enjoying the slow strangulation, politically, of ‘warming ties’. God knows what the world will look like by the time the DPP has finished the slow extraction of its head from its own ass.

Only those whose family had deep ties with the KMT would find life better under martial law, because KMT and its fat cats reaped all the benefits.

The recent events regarding students protesting against media monopoly buyouts by the Want Want group first was met by SWAT team take down, then the head of Ministry of Education sent a request to schools demanding “special care” and “personal info” of those students involved, causing panic from the students families. When students were invited into the Legislative Yuan and express their concerns, and dismay over broken promises made by MOE head, they were demonized by Want Want and Pan-blue media as out of line, and without manners.

It all seems so familiar to someone like me who experienced the last part of the “martial law” years. When gatherings are illegal and students are under constant surveillance from the secret police. Yeah, who doesn’t miss the martial law days…

taipeitimes.com/News/front/a … 2003549382

[quote=“hansioux”]Only those whose family had deep ties with the KMT would find life better under martial law, because KMT and its fat cats reaped all the benefits.

The recent events regarding students protesting against media monopoly buyouts by the Want Want group first was met by SWAT team take down, then the head of Ministry of Education sent a request to schools demanding “special care” and “personal info” of those students involved, causing panic from the students families. When students were invited into the Legislative Yuan and express their concerns, and dismay over broken promises made by MOE head, they were demonized by Want Want and Pan-blue media as out of line, and without manners.

It all seems so familiar to someone like me who experienced the last part of the “martial law” years. When gatherings are illegal and students are under constant surveillance from the secret police. Yeah, who doesn’t miss the martial law days…

taipeitimes.com/News/front/a … 2003549382[/quote]

Grief. Democracy clearly has a long way to come yet.

Yes indeed.

My question is: are these policies being carried out by the same old geezers or their descendants? Thought most second and third generation had left the building. So these are locals following the same policies?

Yep, that incident with the students was really embarrassing… for the elders. Problems is people lose faith in teh system and then what?

The problem also lies in teh fact that people complain about influence of China’s press and conglomerate intersts allied with China, and here people interpret it as if they hated being Chinese. Hence, the kick reaction. And lack of support for preventing the takeover. Plus giving up as going against the system is moot.

This is an excellent question and I don’t have all the answers. Even my wife doesn’t really seem to care or notice what’s going, she’s too busy dealing with the day to day stuff. I guess most people are like that, trying to make a living and look after their own, they feel powerless and think that politics is something that they have no control over or don’t have time to get involved in.

The press and media being over 50% KMT supporters/China supporters backed and owned doesn’t help though, along with the polarisation of society. Each side will put their own spin on things, and truth will be the loser.

A lot of the recent trends leave me very disquieted though.