The point I want to make here is that in the UK and US we have moved well beyond manufacturing consent. What is new is that they are now joined by what I will call the directed propaganda (DP) media, which includes Fox News in the US and most of the right wing press in the UK. DP-media provides biased and misleading information, or sometimes straight lies, that support a political viewpoint.
Thus the MSM is made up of the MC-media and the DP-media. A directed propaganda (DP) organisation will choose to distort news such that it becomes pure propaganda for one particular party or viewpoint. A MC-news outlet will report what it sees as the truth, but with an emphasis that comes from its political position. A DP outlet will splash a story about a scientist’s love life to avoid a front page about the UK having worst death toll from COVID-19 in Europe. These DP-media outlets started off as very slanted MC-media, but have in recent years shifted to contain a large proportion of propaganda.
In the middle of this is the BBC, which at times of crisis has often become the de-facto state broadcaster. More recently there are some signs of it being more independent. When Emily Maitlis attacked the idea that COVID-19 was a great leveler, she received some criticism, but not too much because Newsnight does not appear on the BBC’s most popular channel. In contrast the Panorama programme does, and when it did a very good investigation into the failure to provide doctors, nurses and care home workers with sufficient protective equipment, this received extensive criticisism by the DP-media and the government.
The BBC is an important check on DP-media in the UK, because most people who read the right wing press also watch the BBC. This is why the current government, in place because of the efforts of the DP-media, initially proposed to attack the way the BBC was financed as a way of diminishing the organisation. Although many on the left are deeply unhappy about the BBC because of its MC-media type bias against Corbyn, it remains an important bulwark against the power of the DP-media.
This was a classic DP-media made up story. Real fake news if you like. In this Reuters Institute study, broadcasters top a poll for the institutions that have done the best job during the pandemic, closely followed by the Guardian. In contrast the organisations that have been most uncritical towards the government, the Telegraph and Sun, get negative ratings. And even more interesting is this study, which suggests viewers want more critical coverage, not less.
SOURCE: mainly macro – Read entire story here.