5/21/17

Harvard issued a study on Trump media coverage during the first 100 days.

The conclusion was damning enough as expected.

Trump’s coverage was the most negative ever (comparing to Obama, Bush and Clinton) and, indeed, twice as negative as Clinton’s, which, until now, held the record for negative coverage in the first 100 days—a period usually known as the “grace period,” or 100 days of grace.

80% of the coverage on Trump was negative; 80%. Only 20% was positive. Clinton, the worst until now, was 40% positive or twice as much.

60/40 is close enough to normal. 80/20 is shocking, if not surprising.

The study from the left-of-center Kennedy School of Government goes a long way to try and soften the raw numbers, implying that Trump is partially to blame, but the numbers speak for themselves and even the study hints at the need for media outlets to temper themselves.

The more telling and, indeed, evidence of sheer bias is the fact that a Google search held today, 48 hours after the study was published, finds that there is zero reference to the study on:

  • ABC
  • CBS
  • NBC
  • CNN
  • NYT
  • LA Times

And many, many more of what is usually known as the “main stream” media.

I will commend the WaPo for the fact that they do have an article on the study (not sure how deeply buried it was on the printed version but I did find it online), even though the author turns himself into a pretzel trying to prove, in spite of the clear evidence of bias in the study, that the headline indicating such bias is really not the “true” message. Even he is not trying to deny that it is the message, it is just not the main message according to him—by the way, reading his article, it is sheer nonsense and lacks even internal consistency.

An interesting “morsel” that I take particular pleasure in, is the finding in the study about individual media outlets and their negative/positive ratio.

CNN’s coverage of Trump was, wait for it…93% negative!!! Only 7% positive. Not surprisingly they were the most biased together with NBC.

Fox News, on the other hand—the network that some of my less informed friends (who nevertheless think they are correct all the time and never listen) consider to be biased and fake news—Fox had a ratio of 52/48. 52% negative, 48% positive… oh, well…

While on that topic of media bias, readers of this blog know that I detest CNN; I hold them in sheer contempt.

They are hypocritical, intellectually corrupt and are purveyors of as close to fake news (see a forthcoming post on this topic) as you can get.

However, even I admitted in the past, and do so today, that CNN international coverage is second to none. No one has the resources and the ability to cover international hot-spots as CNN does.

That is why I had double pleasure watching their coverage this morning of president Trump’s visit to Riyadh in Saudi Arabia.

Double pleasure because it was good, extensive coverage and because I felt so gleeful hearing the words stuck in CNN correspondences’ craws as they had to admit time and time again that the reception Trump is getting there is so much more friendly and full of respect than Obama got. Even CNN simply could not ignore the difference. It was, is, palpable.

I suppose one should be grateful for small mercies …