Thursday, March 03, 2011

Yes, Fox did too lie about protests

I rarely read Mediate, so I didn't know they were part of the GOP apologists PR wing, but they're not very good at it. This is the weakest excuse for Fox "News" perfidy I've ever seen:
The segment in question occurred during The O’Reilly Factor as Bill O’Reilly was discussing the anger in the union protests. At the top of the piece, he rolled footage of a number of the “union thug” videos that have become so popular on Right Wing news sites in the past few weeks. O’Reilly clearly identified the videos as collectively coming from “all over the country.” As many shows do, this B-roll footage was replayed again during the rest of the segment, including during an interview with Mike Tobin, Fox News’ reporter who’s been on the ground in Wisconsin.

Here’s where the problem occurred. Tobin was discussing Wisconsin (since that where he’s been) while the general footage played in the background. Taken out of context, these few seconds would seem deceptive. But, if you’d already seen the full segment, you’d recognize what the footage was (besides, this same clip has aired on other Fox News programs like Glenn Beck and been identified as coming from California). Further, the protest footage from Wisconsin is clearly labeled “Madison” as well as date and time stamped, while the “palm tree footage” is labeled “Union Protests.” Confusing? Not really, though if one were to simply see the 43-second clip on YouTube, one could reasonably raise their eyebrows. A reminder of the importance of context.
Confusing, yes. The average viewer isn't going to make the distinction between the labels. And if you rest your defense on labels, it should have been clearly labeled California protest. But it's a distinction without a difference. Subliminally, the video is going to processed as part of the Wisconsin protest. In other words Mediate, a lie by omission, is still very clearly a big fat lie.

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Blogger danps said...

Actually, I think they showed admirable restraint by not showing footage from Libya.

11:06:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

LOL Dan. I guess there's that...

12:17:00 PM  

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