The world needs an unbias news cycle. If you work in the media, no one is allowed an opinion and must save face to protect their career. In recent weeks, I’ve observed an onslaught of media outlets reporting the same story in the same way, and it’s got me thinking. Do journalists want the truth told, or do they not want to risk their reputations and have to give a narrative that couldn’t be further from being factual to avoid defamation?
When I started Project Fangirl I wanted to put out the truth using facts, not a version of it that is often depicted in the media already. What’s more, is this post was inspired by the Season 8 premiere of The Flash. Yes, I know it’s fictional, but Iris West-Allen, one of the lead characters, now runs a media organisation where the big people like the mayor aren’t put on the same pedestal as other outlets would. Instead, they choose to focus on the little people like the everyday civilians and janitors who struggle to make a living wage. This is what I call unbias.
Having an array of opinions is better than regurgitating what others have echoed previously. Since I’ve been in the journalism field, I’ve noticed news outlets don’t often allow their presenters to voice their personal views.
Piers Morgan is an excellent example of fighting against the machine. That is the reason why Good Morning Britain was so popular because Piers had his opinions and exercised them freely when he probably wasn’t meant to do so. After the Oprah interview with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, he said he did not believe anything the former actress claimed. His comments caused backlash, especially regarding the claims Meghan made of having suicidal thoughts.
Quit Or Be Sued – That’s The Narrative… Right?
The straw broke when Markle whined to Dame Carolyn McCall about Morgan’s comments. Piers was told he had to apologise for what he said. When he refused, he quit his job.
Now, at least Piers was willing to stand up for his views. However, his co-hosts weren’t happy with his comments, especially the weatherman who allegedly replaced him as co-host. Ultimately, the ratings, as I mentioned aren’t as high as they were. Did he quit in protest? Yes, and him doing this exposes the bias that is in journalism. To back this up, it has been said by Louise Griffin of Metro that Piers’ former co-host, Susanna Reid is now distancing herself from her views on Meghan.
Though, the weatherman, Alex Beresford who replaced Piers as co-host is still defending Meghan, according to another article by Louise Griffin of Metro.
Now, the reason there is very little unbias journalism out there is that journalists and their employers are afraid of being sued by the subject. Look at what has happened with the case of Jonathon Moran, an Australian entertainment journalist who has been sued, not once but twice. The Daily Telegraph was caught in the middle as they allowed Moran to publish the articles. They were unafraid to get the information out, though it’s unknown if it’s true.
Actors Geoffrey Rush and John Jarrett sued him for defamation after Moran wrote that they had both sexually abused women. I didn’t follow the cases that closely so I don’t have an opinion.
Unbias Journalism Should Be Looking At Both Sides Of The Story
Unbias journalism should include going into a story with an open mind. This is the way I approach most stories. I back things up with other sources rather than just relying on one source. As I’ve said before, both sides of the story are instrumental to learning the truth.
Look at how Prince Harry and Meghan are written. When they got together and were married, publications were afraid to print the truth, even when things didn’t add up. One example of this was when the couple purposely mislead not just the press but the palace when Archie was born. A press release had been put out at about 2 pm in Britain saying that Meghan was in labour. However, it later came out that she had already given birth about five or six hours earlier.
At the time, no one spoke up about the misdirect. They feared the couple’s wrath of being called bigots who had an agenda against Meghan and their biracial child. Again, this was just Harry’s paranoia setting in. No one could report the truth as they didn’t know what it was. Later, the couple came up with some excuse as to why they misled everyone. They didn’t want cameras showing up outside the hospital as they didn’t want their son exposed to the press.
Writing a balanced article is similar to walking into a debate. You need the facts from both sides of the argument if you’re going to perform well. Yes, one side argues for and the other is the side that is against. However, there is nothing worse than not having the intel required and then being called out as being wrong because all the facts weren’t there.
Examples Of Bias Journalism
To understand what it means to have unbias journalism, we need to jump into the realm of bias journalism.
So examples of bias journalism would be when a journalist doesn’t look at the facts and only goes off someone’s opinion. Omid Scobie is a classic example of this.
He wrote a flattering biography on Meghan Markle where Harry was a supporting player and Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge across as cold and unwelcoming. Just the opening of the book (literally) paints Meghan as this warrior yoga goddess where the birds of Africa serenaded her.
Also, he’s well-known for parroting whatever Meghan says. So, if she puts out that she didn’t want her son to have a title, he’ll talk about it. However, if she backtracks and says Archie was deprived of a title, he’ll go with that narrative, forgetting what he said previously. This has not escaped people’s notice that he’s backpedalled more than once.
Another example is PR companies paying journalists to write puff pieces on their clients to provide “positive” PR. We see this with the Sussexes, but one well-known example is the article that Johnny Depp sued over and lost. One of the British newspapers published an article that claimed he was a wife-beater and beat up his then-wife Amber Heard, according to Owen Bowcott and Caroline Davies of The Guardian.
Also, Depp sued Heard over an op-ed she wrote for the Washington Post about her experiences with the abuse she suffered according to Janelle Griffith of NBC News. The editor-in-chief of the Washington Post agreed to publish it because of her claims. They didn’t bother to look into her claims. I wrote a post on how Amber isn’t a victim.
Politics And Journalism Shouldn’t Mix
To finish this post, I wanted to discuss two things that shouldn’t mix; politics and journalism. I don’t know how it works in the US or in the UK or anywhere else in the world. In Australia, politics influences a lot of newspapers to print positive PR about the party or about the people affiliated.
Now, I don’t know which newspapers in Australia are linked to which parties and honestly, it shouldn’t matter. I’ve been told to steer clear of certain news outlets due to their biased opinions.
Politics runs almost every ounce of our lives as it is, so why should it influence the news cycle too? it just doesn’t make it fair for those who have no interest in the subject whatsoever. If anything, journalism should focus on the larger issues rather than the opinions of the rich and influential.