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Political Reporting

Posted by: | October 22, 2009 | No Comment |

Political reporting has always greatly altered the way people feel about critical topics. From the days when one journalist would follow Presidential candidates everywhere they went, to the first televised Presidential debates in 196o, reporting on politics has always served a pivotal purpose: to enlighten.

Today, all of the major cable networks spend the majority of their time covering politics. Each of the channels provides the same basic information in an effort to inform it’s audience, but they all spin their presentations and programming in an angle to best suit their audience. Viewers who want a conservatively-minded broadcast typically watch FOX NEWS. Liberal-minded television viewers probably prefer MSNBC.

It should be noted, however, that journalism with a slant is not new. That was also the case when political reporting was first used by newspapers in the earliest days of the use of correspondents.

Speaking of the old school days…

Mitchell Stephens’ textbook, “A History of News,” mentions Frederick Douglass as one of the first great political reporters in America. Douglass, known more for his work as an activist than for his journalistic exploits, was the political writer for William Lloyd Garrison’s “Liberator” in 1838.


                                                Frederick Douglass

ENDNOTE:

One point that was made during my reading of political reporters is that viewers should remember that they have opinions just like the rest of us. Perhaps thee best way to highlight this is the follwing link, which will take you to an article that I found amazing.

The article shows 143 different political reporters — who are supposedly presenting you with unbiased information — each of whom has donated to political campaigns since 2004. It’s pretty interesting and it’s relevant to the topic.

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