Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Fox polarizes public for profit

I'm a bit late with this one, but it flew under the radar and deserves wider exposure. Quote of the day goes to Major Garrett, formerly of Fox News, for exposing the slimy underbelly of the Fox business model:
“For a certain amount of marketing points of view, Fox actually wants to keep that polarization and say, look, we’re different. ...That is an embedded part of the marketing that surrounded what happens at the news division at Fox that’s been incredibly successful. ...Keeping America divided through media polarization is FNC’s brand strategy."
Jason Easley aptly puts Garrett's full remarks in context:
"When Barack Obama talks about unifying America, he is threatening the very business model that Fox News is based on. Polarization and division are the heartbeat and lifeblood of Fox News. If America ever became more politically unified, FNC would go out of business. A suspicious and divided nation is good for FNC’s bottom line. Fox News does push the Republican agenda, and they do try to divide the nation, because that is how they make money. It’s not just about ideology and politics at Fox News. It’s also about profits, and when polarization stops being profitable, Fox News will cease to exist."
Of course, we all knew this to be true, but it's good to see Major confirm it, and on Morning Joe of all places.

Update: Post expanded. Inaccurate quote attribution corrected.

[Much thanks to Doug J at Balloon Juice for the link. Wish I had thought of that post title.]

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Anonymous karl said...

A couple of things.

(1) Your quote is from Jason Easley, not Major Garrett; Easley was commenting on what Garrett had to say about Fox's (and NPR's -- have to be fair) "polarization of American media".

(2) When Garrett (and other mainstreamers) joined Fox several years ago I wondered how long they would last, either as relative nonpartisans tolerated by management or as relative nonpartisans tolerating management.

When Garrett left Fox for National Journal two months ago there were no parting shots, but now it looks like he was just keeping his ammunition dry.

8:40:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

This is true for ALL the commercial media Karl, but Fox is particularly notable for its excesses.

8:21:00 AM  
Blogger karlG said...

My "have to be fair" was sarcastic. Garrett had to include NPR -- without a token *both sides* aside you aren't a real journalist.

11:05:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Sorry. Wasn't sure if you were serious. But it IS a serious problem across the media. Fox also notable for having started the trend from the day they first aired.

11:36:00 AM  

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