It’s not just a popular stereotype that younger, more hip information consumers get most of their news from the web – it’s a statistic. I find myself falling into that category, but I wonder why this generation prefers to go online for the topics of the day (when they read the news at all). There’s been a paradigm shift in the way we examine objectivity; I think it was Howard Zinn who scoffed at the notion that there was such a thing as objective history, or a straight telling of the facts. In truth, all events demand an emotional response from concerned parties, depending on their interests and beliefs, and an objective account is somewhat absurd because even it inherently contains the viewpoint or expressions of the institution the writer represents. Take your typical Forbes or WSJ article. Recently I read a piece full of presumptive statements about the inefficiency of government bureaucracy in which the article talked about federal employees “rewarding themselves” through pay increases by preforming services the author thought of as unnecessary, whereas “we in the private sector earn our profits through a production of goods” or something to that effect. It’s not that the news is biased towards liberal or conservative concerns, though both of those words are disingenuously close to the truth; it’s that journalism as an industry produces selective information as a profit to private interests who have their stake in controlling that flow of news. If you wanted it in technical terms, it is the neo-liberalist agenda of solely profit driven media production which creates an inherit and institutionalized function of the news and prevents it from fulfilling it’s true democratic role in enabling citizens to have the information they need to effectively be self-determining. At least that’s my opinion.

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