Media Blog

Re: MSNBC Admits What We’ve Known All Along

From that MSNBC story below:

But with polls showing the public losing faith in the ability of journalists to give the news straight up, some major newspapers and TV networks are clamping down. They now prohibit all political activity — aside from voting — no matter whether the journalist covers baseball or proofreads the obituaries. The Times in 2003 banned all donations, with editors scouring the FEC records regularly to watch for in-house donors. In 2005, The Chicago Tribune made its policy absolute. CBS did the same last fall. And The Atlantic Monthly, where a senior editor gave $500 to the Democratic Party in 2004, says it is considering banning all donations. After MSNBC.com contacted Salon.com about donations by a reporter and a former executive editor, this week Salon banned donations for all its staff.

How broadly do these organizations define “politcal activity?” Is calling the local city councilman to fix a pothole the same as writing Hillary a $1000 check? What about a donation to the NRA or Emily’s List? These prohibitions seem to do nothing to stop media bias; it’s not as if these are actual changes in coverage.

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