CNN Tries to Bust ‘Media Misconceptions’ Like Political Bias, ‘Malicious Intent’

On the last so-called “Reliable Sources” of 2021, CNN media apologist Brian Stelter set out to bust some of the “misconceptions” the public had about the media. The misconceptions that needed to be battled included the idea that they have “malicious intent” when they publish fake news and that the media’s political biases were being actively offset internally, resulting in balanced journalism.

To help him in this endeavor, Stelter leaned on veteran journalist and podcaster Mara Schiavocampo. “The single most one is we are lying. There’s a lot of media mistrust. I hear this all the time,” she lamented when asked what’s the largest misconception.

According to her, there was no “malicious intent” on behalf of the media when they make, what Stelter called, “innocent” mistakes. “Most journalists by and large take great pride in getting things right. And it’s tremendously shameful to make a mistake and they own up to it very quickly,” she asserted, chalking most up to “human error.”

But that’s simply not true.

We’ll look more at what they said about political bias shortly, but it’s important when looking at the kinds of mistakes that get made. Just look at the Trump years, there were countless negative stories published by the liberal media in a sprint to smear him that were false and had to be retracted.

There was big stuff like the Russia collusion hoax and then there were small things like the false story Trump had gotten rid of the bust of Martin Luther King Jr from the Oval Office.

There were the reports that he wanted to start a nuclear war with Iran, that he improperly fed koi fish while visiting Japan, and then there were all the lies peddled during the confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Earlier this year, NewsBusters broke how NBC had deceptively edited a 9-1-1 call and body camera video to push an anti-cop agenda.

All these “mistakes” go in one direction. Left against right.

A short time later, Schiavocampo wanted to bust the misconception that “political bias” harmed reporting. She couldn’t hide from the fact that media were indeed biased, but according to her, she hears people say “the media is too conservative, too right-wing,” in addition to “this group is all liberal.”

And in giving example of known political bias, she couldn’t bring herself to admit all of MSNBC was radically liberal. Instead she said: “the public knows that Fox is right-leaning and know, for example, that Joy Ann Reid at MSNBC is a proud progressive.”

If that wasn’t ridiculous enough, Schiavocampo went on to suggest individual journalists overcompensated for their personal bias and gave more coverage and more favorable coverage to the other side:

What’s really ironic about that is that journalists are aware of our own political biases. We’re not robots. And so, often we’ll overcompensate when we know we’re covering something were we have a little bit skin in the game, a little bit of emotional attachment, we’ll overcompensate to make sure the other side really gets a fair amount of coverage and really gets explained properly.

So, in my view, when we do have a political bias, it’s the other view that actually benefits from that because we’re trying to counter our own human impulses,” she added.

Back in reality, NewsBusters has conducted countless studies over the years that prove the media’s liberal bias, including time tallies of airtime for issues and breakdown of positive and negative coverage for Trump and President Biden.

If the media did overcompensate in the other direction (and owned up to mistakes), then why did ABC go 665 days without mentioning the Jussie Smollett trial until after it was over? The broadcast networks have also ignored the infamous Steele Dossier getting utterly blown up by Special Prosecutor John Durham. Both are instances where the media initially jumped all over them because it helped their narrative.

Again, all the numbers go in one direction.

CNN’s poor attempt to bust these so-called “misconceptions” about the media were made possible because of lucrative sponsorships from HughesNet and Sandals Hotels & Resorts. Their contact information is linked so you can tell them about the biased news they fund.

The transcripts are below, click “expand” to read:

CNN’s Reliable Sources
December 26, 2021
11:54:51 a.m. Eastern

(…)

BRIAN STELTER: What do you think are the most common media misconceptions?

MARA SCHIAVOCAMPO:  The single most one is we are lying. There’s a lot of media mistrust. I hear this all the time. And here’s what I would love to correct about he that misperception. We are human. We make mistakes. So most often, when someone says to me the media’s lying and they point to an example, what they’re pointing to is an example of a mistake, not an intentional lie.

We don’t have malicious intent. Most journalists by and large take great pride in getting things right. And it’s tremendously shameful to make a mistake—

STELTER: Yes! Yes,

SCHIAVOCAMPO: — and they own up to it very quickly.

So, if you see a mistake, it’s generally the result of human error. You’re moving too fast, bad sources. Too many cooks in the kitchen. You’re playing a game of–

STELTER: What do you mean, to many cooks in the kitchen?

SCHIAVOCAMPO: If you’re working with a larger team. So you have a producer on the ground or multiple producers at different places in the field, especially with breaking news. Someone’s calling this government official, someone’s doing this. Then you get into a game of telephone and gathering information. And you’re working against deadlines. Mistakes can be made. We’re all human.

So, our intent is to get it right and get it first. And when mistakes are made it’s actually very embarrassing.

STELTER: Yeah, but it’s almost always innocent. Right? Especially these days with the pandemic and people working in different places, you might have four editors in four different places and then a typo ends up in a story just because of the crazy work flow.

SCHIAVOCAMPO: Absolutely.

(…)

11:57:12 a.m. Eastern

STELTER: What’s the next question you think you get most often?

SCHIAVOCAMPO: Well, another big one is political bias. Right? So, people will say this group is all liberal, or they say the media is too conservative, too right-wing.

Here’s the beauty of the space that we’re in today is that we really know the political biases of most of the outlets we’re looking at and we know the ones straight down the middle. For example, the public knows that Fox is right-leaning and know, for example, that Joy Ann Reid at MSNBC is a proud progressive. And they also know the outlets that consider themselves to be in the middle.

What’s really ironic about that is that journalists are aware of our own political biases. We’re not robots. And so, often we’ll overcompensate when we know we’re covering something were we have a little bit skin in the game, a little bit of emotional attachment, we’ll overcompensate to make sure the other side really gets a fair amount of coverage and really gets explained properly.

So, in my view, when we do have a political bias, it’s the other view that actually benefits from that because we’re trying to counter our own human impulses.

STELTER: Right. That’s very interesting.

(…)

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