News You Don’t Like is Not Fake News
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President Trump’s war on media outlets that he claims to be “fake” continues with a not-so-shocking-for-him move. In another effort to delegitimize the media, the White House barred media networks including CNN, BBC, The Guardian, New York Times, LA Times, POLITICO, and BuzzFeed from their media briefing on Friday, Feb. 24 (why BuzzFeed had White House press credentials is a question for another day).
With many mainstream media outlets blocked from attending, who was there? The administration selected a handful of conservative reporters including those from Breitbart, formerly run by Steve Bannon.
This looks like a move by the White House to pick and choose who they want the public to get news from. Fox News has been reporting with kiddie gloves on, reporting mainly on what Trump and his supporters want to hear and not putting enough time into the negative effects of some new policies. Other networks that are more liberal based do the opposite, reporting on the aspects of the administration the White House does not want to hear. The beauty there is that we get both. We the people get to digest as much information as we want and decide for ourselves what to believe based on the information we receive. If the White House and president get to pick and choose who is accurate and who gets to report on what and who gets what information, we are setting ourselves up to be misled.
In recent history, the president has tweeted insults about newspapers and news stations with phrases like the “failing NY Times” and calling CNN “dishonest,” and standing by the thought they are reporting intentionally inaccurate information. These are textbook delegitimization strategies. And they are inaccurate. The New York Times has been thriving in the past six months, and CNN’s average ratings are up as well. He is trying to get the public to agree with him based off of feeling and not fact.
Many of the president’s supporters agree with him; the media is not doing an honest job reporting and have little to no credibility. They cry “fake news” when they see stories that defy their beliefs or go against what the president says or wants. They call it fake news when they see something reported that they do not deem to be a necessary report. Fake news is false information reported or published under the guise of being authentic accurate news. Incorrect information intentionally released to deceive the public. Calling networks you don’t agree with liars and fake news is only alienating the rest of the American people not already on the president’s side.