Googling Media

I am waiting for several books to arrive from Amazon. While I wait, I decided to see what Google has to say. Microsoft Windows Media Player shows up first on the list when you google "media," and Media Matters, a liberal media watchdog group, is second. Their purpose, "Media Matters for America is a Web-based, not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media." They track what conservatives, including Rush Limbaugh and Pat Robertson, have to say on certain topics.

The results for "feminism" included 13 items over the past 2 years, mostly from Limbaugh but also from Tucker Carlson and Bill O'Reilly. I really never thought of Limbaugh as being part of "the media," which I associate primarily with journalists. Limbaugh is not reporting on the news; his is strictly commentary of a mean-spirited variety, and I guess I wonder why anyone even takes him seriously enough to quote him. Ditto for Bill O'Reilly…the worst of the potty-mouthed bigots gets a microphone. Quoting them only makes them seem legitimate. As for Carlson, I guess I had a vague sense that he was more respectful, which just goes to show the level of uncivil discourse that we have reached in this country.

Then, I start to wonder which website is the liberal watchdog? So, I added the words "liberal watchdog" to my media search and discovered Media Research Center, "the leader in documenting, exposing and neutralizing liberal media bias." They have a Notable Quotables page in which they track the outrageous things said in the liberal media.

Finally, there is a seemingly non-partisan, global site called MediaChannel. They are political, however, as they point out that nine multi-national corporations own most of the media on the planet. They are "concerned with the political, cultural and social impacts of the media, large and small. MediaChannel exists to provide information and diverse perspectives and inspire debate, collaboration, action and citizen engagement."

These sites focus on "the media." What makes up that amalgam? Certainly, the traditional newspapers and news programs, supplemented by the 24-hours cable news channels. They all have websites, too, of course. Then, there are the bloggers, who are being invited to cover events just like regular journalists. And, of course, regular journalists blog, too. What about Rocketboom? And the Onion? And The Daily Show? I suppose all the Hollywood entertainment shows fit here as well.

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