Where Do You Get Your News?

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  • #1
lisab
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I'm pretty sure we've had this topic before but it's been a while.

I read BBC News, The Economist (my favorite, but it limits access :mad:), CNN, NBC, New York Times, Bloomberg, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, The Week.

I used to look at my regional paper, The Seattle Times, but like so many others you have to sign up if you want to read more than a few stories a month. I don't want to sign up to any news source.

So lately I feel I'm in a rut - I need new news sources! Erm, let me clarify: I need new news sources that are free!

Where do you get your news?
 

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  • #2
jtbell
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My wife and I pay for print subscriptions to Time and The Economist. During the academic year I read the print version of the New York Times via free copies that are distributed through the college where I work.

We also watch one local TV news program and the NBC news at dinner, and I usually watch the beginning of the CBS morning news while eating breakfast. Sometimes we watch the BBC World News which our PBS station carries.

Online my main daily source is cnn.com, supplemented with occasional articles from other sources via links from forum postings etc.
 
  • #3
WannabeNewton
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The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.
 
  • #4
dipole
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I'm growing increasingly annoyed with NY Times as a source of news, and CNN is utter crap at this point. Al Jazeera seems like an alright place for a bit more honest source, but they have a heavy slant on everything they write. BBC seems ok to me.

Honesty, most news is crap these days it seems. I think with blogs and such, independent journalism is becoming more credible than the actual news agencies.
 
  • #5
Astronuc
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I'm pretty sure we've had this topic before but it's been a while.

I read BBC News, The Economist (my favorite, but it limits access :mad:), CNN, NBC, New York Times, Bloomberg, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, The Week.

I used to look at my regional paper, The Seattle Times, but like so many others you have to sign up if you want to read more than a few stories a month. I don't want to sign up to any news source.

So lately I feel I'm in a rut - I need new news sources! Erm, let me clarify: I need new news sources that are free!

Where do you get your news?
Much the same. I used to watch the News Hour on PBS. I listen to NPR and BBC, and read online. Also, Marketplace (http://www.marketplace.org) by American Public Media in association with USC.

I do find myself frustrated with the mainstream media. For example, when I read something like,

"The Higgs was the last missing ingredient of the Standard Model, a suite of equations that has ruled particle physics for the last half-century, explaining everything from the smell of a rose to the ping when your computer boots up. According to this model, the universe brims with energy that acts like a cosmic molasses, imbuing the particles that move through it with mass, the way a bill moving through Congress attracts riders and amendments, becoming more and more ponderous and controversial.

Without the Higgs field, many elementary particles, like electrons, would be massless and would zip around at the speed of light. There would be no atoms and no us,"

I :rolleyes:
 
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  • #6
ZeroPivot
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CNN FoxNews PressTV sometimes BBC, I would avoid AlJazeera cause they def have an agenda.
 
  • #7
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Pretty similar to the OP, (in order):

BBC online, radio, News 24
PF (I usually get the truth behind the spin here)
Al Jazeera (TV)
BBC Parliament
Sky News (if the previous three TV channels are not intersting and it is)
My children (whose sources are online)

It's important that it's free, there are too many agendas and there is too much profit making going on in news outlets.
 
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  • #8
As most of you guys get that:

BBC News
Wall Street Journal
NY Times
Reuters
 
  • #9
Akaisora
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I don't watch/read news.
 
  • #10
Ryan_m_b
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CNN FoxNews PressTV sometimes BBC, I would avoid AlJazeera cause they def have an agenda.

I'm confused as to why you would avoid AlJezeera (IMO a great news source and one of the few not to give a standard western perspective) because it might have bias but still watch FoxNews...
 
  • #11
russ_watters
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I read CNN and fox news roughly equally as my primary sources and local news sites occasionally. I used to have usa today online as my primary source, but since they changed their format about a year ago, it has become unreadable. Thats too bad because they tended to do a good job of airing both sides of a debate. I occasionally check more left wing sources when there is a heated political issue, but CNN largely has that side covered.

I listen to a local news (not talk) radio station a few times a day when driving and don't watch TV news.

I get Time magazine, but only read it occasionally. Its just so so.
 
  • #12
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I would argue every news outlet has its own slant, even if that slant is "centrist". So "they have an agenda" can be applied to varying degrees to pretty much everybody. As far as Fox News, their news reporting and their commentary are two different things. You could once have said the same about MSNBC, but they have shifted away from being a news source and into the realm of pure commentary. An example in print media is the Wall Street Journal, where the news slants left and the editorials slant right.
 
  • #13
phinds
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I read the Economist, Time, and The Week, watch CNN and PBS and listen to PBS and BBC on satellite radio.

For SERIOUSLY biased news, I watch a bit of MSNBC and FOX just to see what the fruitcakes are up to.

Oh, and I do watch Al Jazira sometimes. I think their TV is reasonably unbiased and is shooting for the same quality standards as the BBC, but looking at the written articles on their web site, I found them heavily biased (against America and Israel).
 
  • #15
edward
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I get a lot of information by reading the small articles on page A10 or A11 in my local paper and then hitting Google.
 
  • #16
lisab
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Some people say the problem with Fox is that they use "Some people say" as a reference for their information too frequently.

http://www.upworthy.com/want-to-see-fox-news-lose-all-its-credibility-in-93-seconds

Ugh, I remember years ago when I noticed "some people say..." in sooooo many Fox broadcasts. It's Fox-speak for "I read in some blog somewhere that...". I want people on the receiving end of that statement to counter with, "Who says that?", and just give a steely gaze.
 
  • #17
Ryan_m_b
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There are some particularly good YouTube channels that exist to document bias found in Fox News. It's not that other news sites don't do this but fox is a particularly egregious example.
 
  • #18
phinds
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There are some particularly good YouTube channels that exist to document bias found in Fox News.

GADS that must be a HUGE bunch of reporting !
 
  • #19
russ_watters
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There are some particularly good YouTube channels that exist to document bias found in Fox News. It's not that other news sites don't do this but fox is a particularly egregious example.
As there are also sites dedicated to documenting liberal media bias. Fox gets singled out on the conservative side because it is the sole major conservative media voice.

As with V50 I recognize that bias exists everywhere and believe that what is most important is being able to recognize it and analyze it, not trying to free yourself from it. With the death of MSNBC it is now true that Fox stands alone in major bias-as-a-purpose news organizations, but it is a much bigger problem IMO that people seem to look at the other media and wrongly assume it to be free from bias.

And again, like V50, I'll point out that there is often a substantial difference between the news part and the opinion parts of the organizations - not to mention the TV commentary shows, which contain little more than blather from any of them.

So I read CNN to see news from the liberal viewpoint and I read Fox to see it from the conservative viewpoint. And on some issues if I'm not sure CNN is capturing the liberal side adequately, I'll have a look as Huffington Post or other sites. But generally, CNN does a pretty good job of providing the liberal bias.
 
  • #20
Ryan_m_b
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The idea that news programs should have opinion pieces that are exempt from the same standards that news should hold baffles me. I've often seen excuses for what charitably could be referred to as bias but reasonably as lying in the form of "but that's the opinion section!" Sorry but if you are reporting on events on behalf of a news agency then it should be considered news. At the very least huge care should be taken to distinguish opinion in behalf of the opining person. However I see no real justification why news agencies should have opinion pieces rather than said opinion pieces being a separate commercial entity. Other than for profit of course.
 
  • #21
russ_watters
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If news organizations tried to hold a standard like that, they'd either be 90% dead air or reporting on school kickball games to fill up time. All news channels have commentary shows and since commentary is by definition opinion it is impossible for it to be bias free.

And while it might be nice if you could find news that stuck to reporting facts only, even the selection of which facts to report and how will be influenced by bias.

As for why. It is important! Think about it for non-political topics: if the story is a court case, don't you find the analysis of a lawyer or other legal expert valuable? And for politics, so much of it is opinion that analysis requires citing opinions.
 
  • #22
Ryan_m_b
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Of course it's impossible to totally avoid bias but that isn't a justification for not having stringent efforts to prevent it. I also fail to see why with all the constantly important events worldwide you would think that a news agency without opinion pieces would have to report on trivial local issues to survive.
 
  • #23
russ_watters
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I'll restate a little more assertively: what you are suggesting would be less informative/valuable than what currently exists. It would be incomplete and inferior and isn't desirable to me. And I think by hoping to find such an organization, you run the risk of fooling yourself into thinking such a thing is possible, then missing the bias.
 
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  • #24
russ_watters
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Here's an example of a type of article that I think your criteria would eliminate:

http://edition.cnn.com/2013/09/26/politics/analysis-shutdown-chances/index.html

It isn't shown in the "opinion" section (which apparently you'd eliminate completely?), but in the political news section, but listed as "analysis". The purpose is to take the factual records of what politicians are saying and provide an opinion on what they actually mean and predict is going to happen next. Near as I can tell, the only substantive difference between "opinion" and "analysis" is that analysis is opinions/predictions about what will happen, while "opinion" is either that or what one wants to happen. But the difference is a big source of often unrecognized bias: many people have trouble separating what they want to happen from what they think is likely. Just poll any sports crowd about the prospects of their team! Whether the reporter fell into that trap or just erred because of the unpredictability of the subject is tough to know, but either way, I found the article to be an excellent piece of analysis even with the wrong prediction (she predicted the shutdown would not happen).

Also, in that example the "analysis" is being done by a regular reporter. I find it interesting that when it comes to politics, reporters seem to consider themselves to be the experts whereas for a court case, science issue or sporting event, they'd often seek an independent expert. That's just a perception, I don't have a measurement though.

Anyway, I find articles like this to be among the most important for political topics because there isn't much value in simply repeating politcians' rhetoric over and over. You have to analyze it to get to the meaning because politics is a poker game: when the news itself is lies, it is tough to blame the opinions for being based on lies too.
 
  • #25
Ryan_m_b
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I think you've missed my point, completely. I'm not searching for some hypothetical biasless system as you seem to have misread but a model whereby opinions and analysis are segregated clearly from actual news reporting. Of course that isn't going to remove bias from news reporting but it will lesson the effect of muddying the waters.
 
  • #26
russ_watters
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I guess I don't understand. You said you desired opinion content to come from "a separate commercial entity". Is that really what you meant? I don't think many such organizations exist and I think such content makes up a very large part of print and TV media. What am I missing?

My local news radio station is a rare example of a news only and they run it on a 20 minute loop, with weather and traffic every 10, thus avoiding 99% dead air (OK, 49% commercials, 1% news and 50% dead air). CNN Headline News channel used to be similar (not sure if it still is), but I don't think there is anything else even close. And again, I think the lack of opinion and analysis makes them highly limited.

Expanding the quote:
Ryan said:
I see no real justification why news agencies should have opinion pieces rather than said opinion pieces being a separate commercial entity.
So would you strip CNN.com and the CNN channel of opinion content and create new companies, channels and websites for the opinion-only part? Seems cumbersome and unnecessary to me - seems like it would result in twice as much content with only the same total value. In other words, it would de-value the existing sources by eliminating quality content.

Again, the idea (if I understand it correctly) makes no sense to me. The analysis and opinion are a valuable - even essential - part of the news reporting to me. I don't think it is possible to thoroughly understand an piece of news without the analysis.

I also notice you didn't answer Lisa's question: what news do you use? And do you think they come close to meeting your criteria?
 
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  • #27
Ryan_m_b
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I think you're conflating analysis and opinion far too much. It is one thing to have an economics expert outline the potential ramifications of a current event and another entirely to have an opinion show where a variety of people sit around and discuss it with whatever political bent they have. Clearly there are still going to be opinions and bias in regular news but I'm more thinking of a greater distinction between that and something like the O'Reilly show.

In terms of what news services I regularly use:

Websites:

BBC
Aj Jazzera
China Daily (less regular than I used to)
CNN (ditto China Daily)
Pink News

News papers:

The Times
The Evening Standard
The Guardian
The Daily Mail (if I need something to boost my blood pressure)
 
  • #28
Evo
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Yahoo
 
  • #29
Astronuc
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Another possibility - http://www.worldpress.org/

Worldpress.org is a nonpartisan magazine whose mission is to foster the international exchange of perspectives and information. It contains articles reprinted from the press outside the United States, as well as originally written material. Reprinted articles are subject to editing, translation, and excerpting. Illustration and photo selection, captions, and some headlines accompanying reprinted articles are by Worldpress.org's editors. Letters may be edited for length and clarity.

. . . .
http://www.worldpress.org/about.cfm
 
  • #30
russ_watters
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I think you're conflating analysis and opinion far too much. It is one thing to have an economics expert outline the potential ramifications of a current event and another entirely to have an opinion show where a variety of people sit around and discuss it with whatever political bent they have. Clearly there are still going to be opinions and bias in regular news but I'm more thinking of a greater distinction between that and something like the O'Reilly show.
Ok, well fair enough: but are there any major news outlets that have separate business units for news an opinion? I don't think any do.
 
  • #31
ZeroPivot
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I'm confused as to why you would avoid AlJezeera (IMO a great news source and one of the few not to give a standard western perspective) because it might have bias but still watch FoxNews...

i watch Fox News for the bigoted hillbilly redneck reaction to the news. CNN is no better to be honest. i mean in reality there's no such thing as "journalism" its all propaganda. But when it comes to the Syria crisis AlJazeera really is one-sided in their reporting cause they are backing the terrorist Al-qaida rebels, so i would stay clear for real news from them.
 
  • #32
lisab
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i watch Fox News for the bigoted hillbilly redneck reaction to the news. CNN is no better to be honest. i mean in reality there's no such thing as "journalism" its all propaganda. But when it comes to the Syria crisis AlJazeera really is one-sided in their reporting cause they are backing the terrorist Al-qaida rebels, so i would stay clear for real news from them.

I won't let this thread become a Syria thread (we have some going already in Current Events), but I've never seen a slant towards terrorism in Al-Jazeera and I've read them for quite a while now. I equate them with BBC as far as quality of reporting, but of course their point of view is a ME one. I think it's good to know what that view is, even if you don't agree with it.
 
  • #33
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You can't remove bias from news reporting. (I prefer "slant" - "bias" implies inappropriate behavior). News outlets can't cover everything, and they certainly can't cover everything in the same depth. So they have to pick and choose.

Tuesday the local NPR affiliate preempted the end of the President's news conference to run a story on the Nobel prizes. Was this right-wing bias? They didn't cover the Speaker's news conference at all. Was this left-wing bias?

There are only 24 hours in a day, and there's more news than fits there. So they pick and choose. Give us their perspective - or slant - on what's important.
 
  • #34
jhae2.718
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I like Google's news aggregator.

(Actually, I just believe anything anyone posts in [STRIKE]P&WA[/STRIKE]Current Events...)
 
  • #35
lisab
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You can't remove bias from news reporting. (I prefer "slant" - "bias" implies inappropriate behavior). News outlets can't cover everything, and they certainly can't cover everything in the same depth. So they have to pick and choose.

Tuesday the local NPR affiliate preempted the end of the President's news conference to run a story on the Nobel prizes. Was this right-wing bias? They didn't cover the Speaker's news conference at all. Was this left-wing bias?

There are only 24 hours in a day, and there's more news than fits there. So they pick and choose. Give us their perspective - or slant - on what's important.

I think this point is often missed. The very moment a pen meets paper - or a finger meets keyboard - the slant is evident: the writer believed it deserved to be reported. When nothing is written, that too is a slant: the writer found it unimportant.
 

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