Is the News Media Becoming a Political Weapon?

The Perspectives page of The Blue and White offers students and staff an opportunity to express their thoughts about topics that affect our school, our community, or the world at large. The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of The Blue and White.

The following editorial was contributed by Senior Joshua Reed:

The job of the media is to be watchdogs, with the common interest of providing the unfiltered truth to the public. The media is supposed to keep the people informed. Now, what happens when said media becomes a weapon; not only providing partially truthful information, but also incredibly biased information as well. The issue at hand is that people are having trouble distinguishing the real from the fake; the truth from the lies, leading to an active “relapse” of the trust of News Media pertaining to political issues. It is the duty of the News Media with higher validity than other institutions, to provide truthful and unfiltered information to the public.

As the trust in news media dwindles people’s ability to distinguish between real information and fake news plummets as well. According to an article by Žiga Turk on, “Disinformation is used as a political weapon…Indeed, fake and real news are discussed a lot. Disinformation is discussed as much as real news on social media sites. Yet, people are consuming and reading disinformation versus information is still very much favorable to real information.” The issue at hand is that fake news shown by the news media, is what is causing distrust in the political community. From the people’s perspective, it may seem like the news can say just about what they want with almost little to no consequence. In order to gain the trust of the public in regards to political topics, it is important for News Media, again, to provide raw and unfiltered truth for the people.

Although public opinion on the media has plummeted, “dropping from 70% in 2016 to 35% this year,” ( there is still hope. Despite numerous claims that people are prone to only seek out news that confirms their own personal views, “most people really want unbiased reporting. And most reporters do, too, experts say. While there are always a few bad apples, the vast majority of working journalists simply want to inform the public and hold the powerful accountable regardless of political affiliation” (according to Trust in the media has been progressively declining over the years, and major reasons include  economic and technological changes in the mass media as a whole.

One issue that I personally have a problem with pertains to the media industry itself.  It seems as though instead of actually providing politically correct information to the public, the news media has favored topics more or less weighing on public interest. Although beneficial for rating, this blinds the public from more important political topics worth knowing about. It’s as if the News media is only reporting drama instead of important political information.

News media has a powerful effect in politics , but without proper consideration as a listener, it is fairly easy to interpret misconstrued information as the undeniable truth. In order to better regulate between the false and truth provided by the media, an emphasis on reviving local news outlets, so people across the country have access to accurate information about their own political influence is vital.