Accuracy in Media

MSNBC’s Morning Joe co-host Joe Scarborough assailed the proliferation of fake news and said that journalists need to do their job if they are serious about putting a stop to it.

Scarborough cited an article in The Federalist listing 16 fake news stories that the media have published or broadcast since Trump won the election:

“We’ve got the list. Here we go. This is from The Federalist, November 22nd, the tri-state hacking election conspiracy theory bombshell report from New York magazine talking about results in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania had been manipulated or hacked. The evidence was no evidence. It was retweeted 2,000 times. The story was retweeted 4,000 times. New York Times opinion columnist Paul Krugman shared the story that was retweeted 1,600 more times.

Eventually Nate Silver came out and said this was not true. And of course there was no hacking. That was false.

The 27 cent foreclosure… does this matter? Yes, it matters. Three people came up to me in church, saying why aren’t you talking about the hacking that went on in Michigan. These are educated people with advanced degrees. I called Alex after I got home from church. What happened? Is there hacking? Are we missing a story? He looked it up, and yeah…

Scarborough then quickly rattled off the other fake news stories, telling the panel that It’s the media’s responsibility to do their job correctly.

That sparked the ire of liberal panelist Donny Deutsch who said that we have a President who lies and that the media get it right 99% of the time.

Scarborough pointed out that the media hate the President and are out to get him:

“There’s consternation in a lot of press shops because they have been rushing to try to get Trump.

Wow, this is not saying Trump is not making stuff up. This is not saying we’re not all disturbed by what everybody else is disturbed by. This is just to say they have got to do a better job. By the way you have media editors saying ‘We’ve got to do a better job.'”

Fake news has proliferated in part because people—including the mainstream media—are so eager to break news via social media, that they don’t bother to check to see if the story is true before posting it to Facebook or tweeting it.

Journalists should know better, but in their zeal to bring Trump down they have put aside the standards and ethics they should abide by in pursuit of their profession. Instead they are practicing partisan politics, or, in some cases, trying to achieve what they apparently think is a greater good.

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