Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Facts, Schmacts

Knute Berger writes in the Seattle Weekly:
Unfortunately, Americans have little appetite for truly "fair and balanced" coverage. If we did, the News Hour With Jim Lehrer would be a smash hit and Fox News would be banished to the media dustbin. In fact, viewers have flocked to the faux "fair and balanced" coverage of Fox that acts as a transparent mask over a right-leaning agenda. Its popularity is partly due to the perception that the rest of the media have a left-wing bias, allowing Fox to offer itself as the feisty counterbalance.

I'm not a big fan of the News Hour - I think it's "yell TV" without the yelling much of the time, just a quieter more lethargic version of the feistier cable shows. Two sides come on to tell their story, and we are left none the wiser about which competing version of reality is true.

But, for all of Fox's "popularity," according to PBS the News Hour gets 2.7 million daily viewers, which is about what Fox's most popular show, The Falafel Hour, gets.