Monday, August 15, 2011

How the media makes sausage

I'm feeling a little shocked by my own naivety right now.  If you asked me if I thought the media was sometimes dishonest in the way they told a story I would have immediately said that, yes they most certainly are!  Yet despite that, if I saw someone saying something on TV or heard them say it on the radio I believed it to be accurate.  Quotes in print I'm easily skeptical of, thanks to countless encounters with Creationist quote mining but somehow when I see video my skepticism gets short circuited.  I knew that reporters make edits but I never really knew how to spot them so I usually just trusted whatever I saw.

Not anymore.  British reporter Peter Hadfield (aka youtuber Potholer54) posted this video sharing the tricks of the trade.  Now that I've seen how they do it I'm definitely going to be more vigilant in future!  Granted, not all edits are malicious - I'd like to think that most are simply made due to time constraints - but even an innocent editing mistake can completely alter a quote.  Point is, seeing is not believing! 

So if you're brave enough to take a peek behind the curtain, here is Potholer54's video on the tricks of the journalistic trade:

(Video apparently blocked in the UK and Ireland for copyright reasons, unblocked version available here)

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