8 votes

Should the Press Boycott Trump? Political Strategists Weigh In

10 comments

  1. [4]
    joelthelion Link
    I think it's more than Trump. The press should stop reporting on low-level political noise (twitter controversies, unimportant "scandals", ...), and focus on actual politics: in-depth analyses,...

    I think it's more than Trump. The press should stop reporting on low-level political noise (twitter controversies, unimportant "scandals", ...), and focus on actual politics: in-depth analyses, laws being passed, ...

    Going back to Trump, I think this would largely solve the issue. Given that the man is very light on actual content, coverage would shrink to a minimum.

    13 votes
    1. Gaywallet Link Parent
      I hope CNN will lead the way and put out a press conference outlining why they are changing their coverage of Trump. That way they'll draw air time from other stations to cover their lack of...

      I hope CNN will lead the way and put out a press conference outlining why they are changing their coverage of Trump. That way they'll draw air time from other stations to cover their lack of coverage of Trump.

      Unfortunately, I worry that the American populace does not care, and that choosing to cover real issues will simply mean viewership will go down and they'll be forced to start covering the president again or fail as a media enterprise.

      4 votes
    2. Neverland Link Parent
      I completely agree with you. Trump is a great lesson for us and the press. I hope the lessons are learned, changes applied, and kept in place long after Trump is gone.

      I completely agree with you. Trump is a great lesson for us and the press. I hope the lessons are learned, changes applied, and kept in place long after Trump is gone.

      1 vote
    3. nacho Link Parent
      In an ideal world, sure. But that's not news normal people bother reading. If it were, these would be your top stories everywhere. That's the issue for the modern press: some things get clicks....

      In an ideal world, sure.

      But that's not news normal people bother reading. If it were, these would be your top stories everywhere.

      That's the issue for the modern press: some things get clicks. Some things are important. Few things are both. What the press generally doesn't want to write about are things that do neither.

      The question becomes: How do you get clicks on something important that on the face of things are boring?

      Whoever solves that problem for even one field of politics will make a lot of money.


      The other issue is emergent. If one outlet does something on a tweet, why would another outlet let that quick and easy traffic go? That's just letting your competitors win.

      As some media outlets are clearly pro-Trump on anything he does or says, they'll always be making stuff on his tweets, just as Obama got a huge amount of press on his press releases, speeches and tweets.

      A major part of what the president does is set the agenda by talking about stuff. Collectively the press is forced to cover it.

      1 vote
  2. dubteedub (edited ) Link
    I have seen a surge in recent months of journalists attacking media organizations for sharing Trump Twitter lies or the latest GOP conspiracy theory without any sort of fact-check or qualifier....

    I have seen a surge in recent months of journalists attacking media organizations for sharing Trump Twitter lies or the latest GOP conspiracy theory without any sort of fact-check or qualifier.

    Edit: one example from this morning - https://twitter.com/ddale8/status/1061998044063940608

    The media has been duped time and again to allow Trump to dictate the narrative of the day, and it is almost always some outrage bait to distract from a real and serious issue. In the case of this article for example, the White House had hoped that taking Jim Acosta's press badge on dubious charges would distract from the fact that the GOP just lost the House of Representatives and Trump had just fired Jeff Sessions as Attorney General.

    In this specific instance the media did not take the bait and covered the real issues that matter, and I am very grateful for that, but too often they have chosen to cover the more outrageous, but ultimately less impactful stories.

    One thing echoed in this article was also discussed recently by Jon Stewart and I think it rings pretty true.

    "I think that journalists have taken it personally," he said. "They are personally wounded and offended by this man. He baits them. And they dive in. And what he’s done well, I thought, is appeal to their own narcissism, to their own ego... the journalists stand up and say, 'We are noble! How dare you sir!' And they take it personally, and now he’s changed the conversation to not that his policies are silly or not working or any of those other things — it’s all about the fight. He’s able to tune out everything else and get people just focused on the fight. He’s gonna win that fight."

    7 votes
  3. [3]
    tmburke Link
    This is why I really enjoy "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver". Airing only once a week they have the time to focus on important and complex issues that don't normally make headlines elsewhere. I...

    This is why I really enjoy "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver". Airing only once a week they have the time to focus on important and complex issues that don't normally make headlines elsewhere. I wish there was more 'long form' TV journalism (I know it's a comedy program, but comedy is some of the best journalism today) in the same form as Last Week Tonight.

    6 votes
    1. yellow Link Parent
      I think one of the reasons that Last Week Tonight seems so good as a news source, despite being a comedy, is that it doesn't limit itself to news. A lot of the main focuses of the episodes are not...

      I think one of the reasons that Last Week Tonight seems so good as a news source, despite being a comedy, is that it doesn't limit itself to news. A lot of the main focuses of the episodes are not connected to any recent development or only connected tangentially, especially in older episodes. Journalism has become practically synonymous with news. One of my favorite topics he covered was on stadiums and the deals they get from cities. It wasn't new, but I didn't know about it.

      5 votes
    2. dainumer Link Parent
      If you have Netflix, Hassan Minaj from the Daily Show recently debuted a show called The Patriot Act that follows the same format as John Oliver's show.

      If you have Netflix, Hassan Minaj from the Daily Show recently debuted a show called The Patriot Act that follows the same format as John Oliver's show.

      3 votes
  4. Diet_Coke Link
    Honestly they should have started the boycott the minute 'alternative facts' got trotted out. They can still report on the White House by focusing on what they do instead of what they say. When...

    Honestly they should have started the boycott the minute 'alternative facts' got trotted out. They can still report on the White House by focusing on what they do instead of what they say. When you can't trust the veracity of a person or institution, looking at what they do is a much more useful way to discover their intentions anyway. This is not a time for political cowardice.

    4 votes