Russell (et al.) compares elite media and institutions with bloggers and ponders the following question: “Do bloggers, with their editorial independence, collaborative structure and merit-based popularity more effectively inform the public?” (Reader, page 136). Do you agree? Use examples to illustrate your point of view

There is undoubtedly a vast difference between bloggers and more conventional forms of media, ranging from the point of view that is offered by the author, to external forces that influence the article and its argument. The Herald Sun is a perfect example of how a legitimate information conveyor can bring to us quite a one-sided opinion on certain topics. In every single section of the paper, each article has to correspond to the opinions of one Rupert Murdoch, or at least follow the same principles in which he does.

 

One such example of this is how newspapers under Rupert Murdoch’s control covered the Iraq War. What a coincidence it was that of the 175 papers all over the world that are controlled by Rupert Murdoch, all of them happened to be supporting the Iraq War! Even more coincidental that Rupert Murdoch also happens to be in favour of the Iraq War, stating “The greatest thing to come of this to the world economy, if you could put it that way, would be $20 a barrel for oil.” This seems all too perfect for my liking.

 

And thus, we can see how external forces outside of the article themselves can influence what it is actually written in the article. So to some extent, I agree that due to their, ‘editorial independence’ they can provide us with information that has not been heavily compromised. Yet, I still believe that they still don’t necessarily inform the public more effectively.

 

This is simply due to the fact that there is a large difference between an opinion piece and an informative piece. A blog is designed for a person to convey their emotions, and similarly an opinion piece in the paper. What blogs lack, however, is an informative section, a section that is purely focused on providing the facts. A blog gives us a ‘commentary’ of events, and in turn a biased view of what is happening, whilst an article gives us largely a factual account with maybe some snippets of opinion throughout the article.

 

Compare this article:

http://www.theage.com.au/entertainment/tv-and-radio/oprah-winfrey-finale-devoted-to-fans-20110526-1f50s.html

 

To this Blog:

http://saltandnectar.wordpress.com/2011/05/26/the-final-episode-of-the-oprah-winfrey-show/

 

Now if you can’t be bothered reading, and I completely understand, it’s about Oprah Winfrey’s final show. The article details what happened during the show, as well as the lead-up and potential aftermath. The blog is basically a fan gushing at how great Oprah is and the lessons she has learnt from Oprah; yes it was tough to get through. THAT, in my opinion, is why ‘elite media’ informs the public more effectively than blogs.

And in my opinion, thank god Oprah is over

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