Media Wars: News at a Time of Terror (Polemics)

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9780742531093: Media Wars: News at a Time of Terror (Polemics)

'Limiting access, limiting information to cover the backsides of those who are in charge of the war, is extremely dangerous and cannot and should not be accepted. And I am sorry to say that, up to and including the moment of this interview, that overwhelmingly it has been accepted by the American people. And the current administration revels in that, and they take refuge in that.' ―CBS News Anchor Dan Rather on BBC News Night, May 16, 2002 In Media Wars: News at a Time of Terror, MediaChannel founder and editor, Danny Schechter, 'the News Dissector,' critically examines media coverage since 9/11. Schechter analyzes what has been covered and, more tellingly, left out, in news coverage of the terrorist attacks and their aftermath. Drawing from the reporting of over one thousand worldwide radio, newspaper, television, and internet affiliates, the result is a scathing account of how the media has become a megaphone for the U.S. military and its war on terror. More than just a critique, Schechter suggests a series of changes to improve our news sources and return them to the vital role a free and independent press must play to preserve a democracy. Media Wars is a timely assessment of what we are and are not being told in the most important story of our new century.

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About the Author:

Danny Schechter became known as the 'news dissector' in Boston and his television career has included time as an on-air reporting at Boston's WGBH, CNN producer, as well as producer for ABC's 20/20. He is currently the executive producer and co-founder of the television and film production company Globalvision and editor of Mediachannel.org. Schechter resides in New York and his writings have appeared in leading newspapers and magazines including The Boston Globe, Newsday, The Detroit Free Press, The Village Voice, and The Columbia Journalism Review. Media Wars is his fifth book.

From Publishers Weekly:

Schechter, formerly a mainstream journalist, now a producer for Globalvision, a television and film production company, has collected some of his own post-September 11 reportage, in addition to articles written by colleagues at Media Tenor (a firm that analyzes media content), the Project for Excellence in Journalism and other critical outlets. Schechter believes the American media (here, mostly television, some newspapers and magazines, but not radio) have failed the American public by not providing meaningful coverage of world news, largely due to government and corporate pressure. Even after September 11, the question the media addressed wasn't "why terrorism?" but "who to blame for it?" After several introductory essays, Schechter's opinion takes over, as he shares his own reactions to world news post-September 11, interrupted by flash-forwards or backwards, and intercut with charts categorizing the content of various television shows or newspapers, as well as analyses by other media "dissectors." The concluding section reviews Schechter's own career, describes the formation and mission of Globalvision and his other endeavor, Mediachannel.org, and even reprints sections of the introductory materials, notably Walter Cronkite's remarks on the need for dissent. While there is some excellent material here-notably Independent correspondent Jake Lynch's "Tips for Covering Conflict"-the book overall is disorganized and repetitious, making it hard to read cover-to-cover. All the same, Schechter's call for journalists to stand up to pressure and start reporting on the world again is vitally important.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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