New York Magazine Makes "The Case Against the Media" Editor Genevieve Smith tells Folio: why now's the time to dig deep into public distrust … On July 25, New York magazine featured a cover story that immediately sparked interest among those in media, called "The Case Against the Media. By the Media." – Folio
At the end of July, New York magazine tried to investigate reasons Americans hate mainstream media without much success.
The article was very long and featured numerous interviews with journalists. So much obvious effort let us know this was an "important" story. But it droned on and on for 75,000 words without ever coming to a conclusion.
It was more like notes for a story than an actual article.
But no matter. New York Magazine basically wants us to understand that the media investigates its own. That was one of the reasons to write it. Now no one can accuse Western media of not trying to figure out what's going on.
We were going to respond to the article, but it was just too lengthy and complex. At least this fairly brief Folio article, excerpted above, gives us something to react to, though it doesn't really come to a conclusion either.
One of the criticism made by interviewees was that news reporting had become overly objective. The reporter was supposed to provide both sides of a given issue, and then you could make up your own mind where you stood.
The trouble with objective journalism has to do with the sides you provide.
If you're writing about war, for instance. You can write that US is wrong to kill thousands of women and children in the pursuit of larger "national security" objectives.
But you better also write about the strategy behind the war and its necessity in the view of many – not really for purposes of objectivity but because the corporation that owns the news outlet is selling weapons to the government.
Of course you dress it up as objectivity. Killing innocent women and children is never right. Two sides are not necessary. It's wrong to blow up women and children in a war that you started.
More from the article:
Publishing this cover story posed … risks because it's unusually long for the magazine. According to Smith, the transcript from the 48 interviews was 75,000-words-long in the end.
The story has 53 different subsections, plus an introduction explaining the magazine's reasoning for investigating this issue …
Smith admits she's unsure if readers will take the time to read through the article, but so far, she believes it's doing well. A spokesperson from New York magazine said it was too early to release analytics on the article.
We can assure Smith she doesn't have to worry. The story is virtually unreadable.