Sunday, September 22, 2002

It isn't always easy to get your political message across in “news” pieces. With so many readers disgruntled and organizations looking for bias in the media, it's becoming harder to get away with political commentary in the news. To all of my politically and socially liberal readers who are interested in becoming journalists, there are still good ways to get your message across to unsuspecting readers.

Lynn Elber, the AP Television Writer, shows you how to include politically biased content in a “news" article on the upcoming Emmy Awards. Here’s the money section near the end of article:

"Before 2000, winners were selected by 'blue-ribbon' voting panels that gathered in a hotel for an isolated weekend of watching submitted episodes. It was onerous duty and drew a small group of volunteers.

Then the academy got smart and got modern, mailing videocassettes for at-home viewing. The number of voters jumped from about 1,000 to an estimated 6,000 this year, more than half the academy's 11,000 members.

'Sort of like Florida radicalized people to realize that their vote counted, the changes we made kind of radicalized our membership and told them your vote really counts, so pay attention,' [Chairman of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, which organizes the Emmys, Bryce] Zabel said."

Silly me. I didn't understand that the lesson of the 2000 presidential election in Florida was the realization that our votes counted. Thank you for pointing out the error in my thinking.

The important lessons to be learned by future liberal "reporters" here are the following:
1. Put politically biased content near the end of a "news" piece. People looking for media bias might miss it.
2. Sneak politically biased content in seemingly non-political "news" stories, such as "news" stories on television or the Emmy Awards.
3. Put politically biased content in quotes from someone you interview for a story. You can always blame the speaker of the offending words in case you, the writer, are accused of bias.
4. Try to put political messages in glib remarks from the person you interviewed. Readers may dismiss the political content as someone simply trying to be humorous.

So thank you, Lynn Elber. You are a master of your trade, and someone all liberals in the media aspire to emulate.