Highest Rated Comments

Impune2071 karma

Shock value is fleeting; real stories that are underreported are what get us excited.

… So that's why you did a story on donkey fucking. It was a real, substantive story about a highly important yet unreported issue. Thanks, VICE!

Impune317 karma

As a news organisation, we are not in search of neutrality. Rather, objectivity.

I wish more people could appreciate the distinction between the two. Journalists shouldn't be "fair" or "neutral." They should be revealing the truth and exposing the bad guys.

Whenever I hear people dismiss an article because it "didn't tell both sides of the story" I feel a little twang of disappointment. Sometimes giving the "other side" of the story out of "fairness" only legitimizes an argument that should be otherwise ignored or dismantled.

EDIT: There seems to be a lot of confusion as to what I mean when I say sometimes "fairness" should be avoided. I'd encourage anyone interested in the state of journalism today to read Jay Rosen's "He Said, She Said" Journalism article, or his more recent blog post about He Said, She Said journalism vis-a-vis NPR here. Rosen is a media critic, journalist, and Professor of Journalism at New York University. He explains what I was attempting to critique in my comment very well.

Impune180 karma

Holy balls. I just read his username, and checked his history (figuring it would be a brand new account because they mention zoophiles in the VICE feature).

Nope. He's got pictures of horse and dog dicks in his post history. … I'm… He… Well, there's something to be said for being candid. I just don't know what that is in this context.

Impune65 karma

Not at all. If you investigate and present facts clearly, people can decide for themselves which side they agree with. The problem is that many organizations simply relay the opinions of both sides ("both sides of the story") as if both sides have equal claims to legitimacy.

Journalists should avoid parroting the views of both sides and focus more on pointing out which of those views is wrong, why they might be misguided. Saying "Relublicans think X, but Democrats say Y" isn't reporting the facts. It's reporting two opposing ideas and leaving the reader with absolutely no critical work on which to base one's opinion. "Republicans think X, Democrats think Y, but over the last few months both have done Z" is reporting. It's going beyond what two sides say, and actually digging up the realities of what they do.

Whether or not you think doing Z is "right" is up to you. But it's fact. And without it journalists are merely presenting two opposing talking points as if they were both legitimate. Sometimes (most the time) there are correct opinions, or more legitimate opinions, and lesser/weaker/wrong opinions. The way we figure out which is which depends not on ideology, but fact.

Impune46 karma

it's not a journalist's place to interpret information for people.

If it's not their job to investigate, interpret (read: clarify) fact, then what is their job? To call Obama and ask for his talking points, then call Boehner and ask for his talking points, and then copy and paste them into a column and hit the "Publish" button? Because that's where journalism is today, but that's not how it's supposed to be.

Journalists are suposed to cut through the bullshit, spin, and lies and present us with the closest thing to the truth that they can. It requires critical thinking, integrity, and self-discipline.

Presenting both sides when one side is clearly wrong and saying "You decide which is right/wrong/true/incorrect" is simply doing the public a disservice.