Note: FAIR encourages readers to support their local independent booksellers. However, if books mentioned on our site are not available in your area, we offer the ability to purchase some books online in association with the book's publisher, and Powell's Books. Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women By Susan Faludi (Crown, 1991) An in-depth, well-documented analysis of the media backlash against feminism. By Invitation Only: How the Media Limit Public DebateBy David Croteau and William Hoynes (Common Courage, 1994) Incorporates Croteau and Hoynes' classic studies of Nightline, the NewsHour and PBS that document the establishment bias of "prestige" television. […]
Search Results for: David Croteau
The Nightline study and media research
I first became acquainted with FAIR in 1987, when a friend handed me a special issue of Extra! (10-11/87) that described the distortions in U.S. news coverage of Nicaragua, highlighting the success of the Reagan administration at manipulating the news media. At the time, I was a grad student in sociology at Boston College, and was working on a study of media strategies of the Central America solidarity movement and exploring broader questions about how news media reported U.S. foreign policy. With Cold War assumptions shaping both the political debate on Capitol Hill and mainstream news coverage of U.S. involvement […]
Elite Bias Rules
A good place to begin a discussion of media bias on economics is with the price of wine. In 1997, this is how the New York Times wine columnist discussed the issue: "The $100-a-bottle wine, once an example of vulgar excess, is now an everyday occurrence." What's now an everyday occurrence is celebratory and ignorant elitism in national media. Indeed, it is the overriding bias in economics coverage -- whether the news outlet leans left or right on social issues like gays, guns or abortion. This elite worldview leads to a conservative, pro-corporate slant on issues from trade to wages […]
Political Discourse and the "New PBS"
Introduction Public television has survived. The high profile assault from conservative critics, which was front-page news in the early 1990s, now seems like ancient history. As we enter the digital television age, we no longer hear Congressional threats to "zero out" public television, plans to "privatize" public broadcasting have receded from the opinion pages, and the often shrill claims of a so-called "liberal bias" on public television are much less conspicuous. Indeed, PBS's 1998 Annual Report(1) talks of a "new PBS" that has been in development since 1995, precisely the time when the conservative effort to scale back, even eliminate, […]
For years, conservatives have painted a picture of the Washington press corps as a group of liberal crusaders bent on bashing corporations, bloating government and socializing health care. This caricature is utterly deflated by a new survey of journalists. It turns out that on a wide range of economic issues, Washington journalists are more conservative--not more "liberal"--than the general public. Take the charge that journalists are anti-business. The recent survey asked them a simple question: Do "a few large companies" have "too much power"? Washington journalists were somewhat divided on the issue, with 57 percent answering yes and 43 percent […]
What Are the Politics of Network Bosses?
While David Croteau's study demonstrates that Washington journalists are to the right of the general public on many economic issues, it needs to be stressed that the personal views of news reporters do not translate directly into the slant of news coverage. Reporters have editors or producers who play a key role in how the news is presented; these editors and producers in turn are overseen by higher-up news executives, part of a hierarchy that eventually culminates in the chief executive officer of the corporation that owns the news outlet. But those who specialize in scrutinizing the private opinions and […]
Two recent events — the launch of a magazine about news media and the release of a survey about journalists' opinions — illustrate the wide gap between the preoccupations of elite media professionals and the economic outlooks of most Americans. After lots of advance publicity, the premiere issue of Brill's Content is hot off the press. The magazine calls itself "the Independent Voice of the Information Age" and pledges to scrutinize news coverage without fear or favor. But so far, the match-up seems to be along the lines of "Establishment vs. Establishment." Exactly who owns this "independent voice"? In fact, […]
Journalists' Views on Politics, Economic Policy and Media Coverage
[See the Extra! magazine report on this study: Challenging the "Liberal Media" Claim: On economics, journalists' private views are to the right of public (July/August 1998) by David Croteau—Adobe reader required.] Executive Summary The conservative critique of the news media rests on two general propositions: (1) journalists' views are to the left of the public, and (2) journalists frame news content in a way that accentuates these left perspectives. Previous research has revealed persuasive evidence against the latter claim, but the validity of the former claim has often been taken for granted. This research project examined the supposed left orientation […]