7

Kicking television


 

Conor Friedersdorf laments for television news.

There’s an important caveat that Benen left out: Olbermann offered something that couldn’t be found elsewhere on television. For liberals who like that medium, I’m sure the show proved cathartic. But wouldn’t they be better informed, more meaningfully entertained, and psychicly happier if just read Washington Monthly instead? Yes, I know, television is a very popular medium (mostly because it demands so little from its audience). But it is the worst way to engage politics in America. Compared to reading it is a wildly inefficient time suck. The format itself often strips the issue at hand of all nuance. It rewards demagoguery, and the host’s words disappear into the ether so fast that inaccuracies slip easily past and are seldom corrected for the people misled by them. Often as not, its producers and writers just take insights from the written medium and dumb them down.


 

Kicking television

  1. He's just figuring this out?

  2. We should go back to reading, rather than watching events as they unfold?

    Quill pens too?

  3. Most print journalism today also "strips the issue at hand of all nuance." In my not so humble opinion, it is the single biggest problem with editing today. There is such a need for a headline, to take a "position," or to show to opposing views that the art of nuance is often lost in print journalism. Reporters and editors have substituted balance for nuance.

    The sad part is, I think more sophisticated or interested readers prefer the journalism with shades of grey – I think publications who edit out the nuance (or tolerate reporters/columnists submitting copy without any) do a disservice to readers.

  4. I'd say the internet is the worst way to engage in politics, if comment threads are any indicator.

  5. Compared to reading it is a wildly inefficient time suck.

    I can read ten opinion pieces in the same time that it takes me to watch one demagogic TV host perform a tedious monologue that contains no insights that haven't already been expressed more thoughtfully in print or in blogs.

  6. Heard of YouTube? You get the worst of both worlds, TV and a comment board. But I hear the kids dig it :)

  7. Now, now … don't pick on Rex.

Leave a Reply to Emily Cancel reply

Sign in to comment.