Article Comparison

The recent high school shooting in Parkland, Florida is being covered by many news sources in America right now. I am comparing two articles written by CBS and The Sun Sentinel, a South Florida based newspaper.

            The local paper’s article begins with the aftermath, focusing on the surviving students who journeyed to Tallahassee by bus to advocate for more strict gun control laws and student walkouts of high schools across South Florida. The article recounts the events of the shooting while providing details about community effects in wake of the shooting such as donations for the victims, candlelight vigils, President Trump’s address of the issue, as well as the Florida State Government rejecting a law that would ban sale of AR-15s in Florida.

CBS begins their article by identifying the shooter and the number of victims, while hailing it the “deadliest school shooting in the past five years.” The article offers information from the shooter himself gained in an interview with police, about the methods that he employed and the weapons used during the shooting.

The CBS article also detailed recent info about the trial of Nikolas Cruz and provided a timeline of events of the shooting and his arrest, citing that the police have interviewed over 2,000 people and are sifting through the information for more details. President Trump’s address was also cited, as well as images of tweets, that detailed his plans to visit the school victims and work to achieve safer schools for the children of America.

The CBS article is focused on the details of the shooting and the trials and offers a detailed account of the events that took place, while examining the government response to the shooting and discussing past shootings in relation to this one. The Sun Sentinel is from the same area the shooting took place and focuses on the victims and the reaction from the local community. The sense of community is represented in this article more than in the CBS coverage. The activism of the students and peaceful protests among other high school students in Florida were the focus of the article, being the primary point introduced and reaffirmed throughout the article. The article also discusses local police possible solutions improving safety and insuring this doesn’t happen again. The Sentinel frames the shooting in terms of a local tragedy but highlights a community that isn’t going to sit by and let nothing change, introducing its place in the larger gun control debate.

The CBS article provided the shooter’s story near the end of the article, detailing his troubled childhood and his mental health problems. Cruz was described as an orphaned loner, who has violent tendencies and expressed warning signs such as posting photos with guns on social media and being expelled from school at 17 for fighting.

Both articles bring the issue of policy regarding gun control to the viewers attention. CBS uses other school shootings to reinforce the rising trend of school shootings, naming this one the 18th this year. The Sentinel highlights the advocacy of the locals and the victims for stricter gun control laws. The Sentinel offers a more local perspective on the shootings and the community effects, while CBS offers more details on the shooter and the larger impact on the nation

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Article Comparison

Media Bias in NYT Article

Two troubling topics have surrounded the Trump administration in recent days, as he has received criticism for his handling of the shooting at a Florida high school, and the verdict of the Russian interference in the U.S. presidential election in 2016.  In an article from the New York Times, authors Katie Rogers and Maggie Haberman mesh the two stories into a critique of President Trump’s responsiveness and overall temperament since the events.

The article, titled “Trump’s Evolution from Relief to Fury Over the Russia Indictment”, analyzes his Twitter posts as well as his visits and conservations with state and local officials in the Parkland, Florida region.  The article has little groundbreaking news, and is more a recap and analyzation into President Trump’s tweets.

The New York Times is a noteworthy publication, with a reputation of leaning to the left on many issues, especially regarding Trump and his interactions.  While this doesn’t represent bias in and of itself, it should give the reader an idea of what type of writing it is.

The first couple sentences in the article have a sarcastic and comical tone, as the two authors are quick to mention his Florida estate, golf, and television, all within the same sentence.  These have been points of criticism from the left of the president, as many believe he is away from Washington too much.  The next paragraph dives into President Trump’s social media posts, calling the posts a “Twitter tirade that was unusually angry and defiant even by Mr. Trump’s standards.”  This type of language shows clear bias and opposition against the President.

Transitioning into the Russian collusion investigation, Rogers and Haberman discuss what has been said from the Trump administration and Trump himself.  They spend five paragraphs refuting stances and positions taken by the Trump administration.  In summary of this portion they essentially recap positions taken by Trump, and spin the narrative to frame his as guilty or hiding something.  This type of approach is aimed to create distrust.

An argument could also be made that the authors used the conflict approach here.  Instead of recapping the investigations and its findings which showed that meddling took place but not directly with the campaign, they decided to focus on inaccuracies of the investigations and how the findings could still lead to collusion.

There is also clear journalistic bias because of where certain information was presented.  The first portion of the article, where most will only read until, mentioned only negative things about the President, which created the perception that he wasn’t handling the two events in an acceptable manor.  The overall picture that readers will take away is that the President was at his Florida estate, not playing golf only because it would be insensible following the shooting, watching TV, and going on a “Twitter tirade”, “outburst”, “eruption”, or was “lashing out”.

Referencing the journalistic pyramid of what readers capture, this is at the top.  At the very bottom of the article, the authors finally mention his meetings and visits to officials and survivors of the school shooting.  They described an interview from the major of Parkland Christine Hunschofsky where she talked about her conversation with President Trump.  She said she was “struck by how affected the president had seemed by his hospital visit.”  This is the first attempt for readers to see the President in a positive light, however most readers will not even see this information because it was placed at the bottom of the article.

Overall the article clearly portrays the President in a negative light, and taking away the end portion, never details him as somebody caring or responsible, even in the wake of a tragedy.  This type of language adds to the conflict surrounding Trump and how he handles different types of events.  This added conflict is strategic in making readers believe that Trump is essentially unfit for office and is irrational.

In order to analyze this bias a study must be conducted.  An interesting study would be to look specifically at the two topics mentioned in this article (shooting and Russian collusion) and ask how you think the president is handling the situation.  Take a group of moderate voters and get input on how they think President Trump is handling these two situations, and then take another group of moderate voters, make them read this article, and get their input on his actions.  Theoretically the group that was shown the article will have less favorable opinions compared to the group that is not shown the article.  This is a very simple study, however it directly shows how one article can have an impact on an opinion.

 

 

Media Bias in NYT Article

Media Diary

John Rodriguez Media Diary 2/11/18-2/17/18

This past week I kept a log of what news sources I used to stay politically and economically informed. Overall, I consider myself to be highly informed politically and economically, but I fall short when it comes to pop culture. I rely heavily on a few news sources that are both moderate and politically/economically based. Below is a semi-detailed list of where I got my news for the week.

  • Sunday: I spent most of my time reading about stocks from Bloomberg, Kiplinger’s, Yahoo Finance, Marketwatch, and CNBC. I read articles on ETFs that were trending up and the recent stock market drop.
  • Monday: I almost spent the entire day reading about the Federal Government raising rates this March on Yahoo finance. I also read some information on the potential demand for natural gas on CNBC. Foreign Policy Class, talked about the issues with sanctions and the recent deployment troops to Afghanistan.
  • Tuesday: Read an article from CNBC on the recent demand in the Lincoln Navigator potentially increasing Ford’s stock price.
  • Wednesday: Read an article from CNN on the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. I also read a few articles on the “Top ETF’s for the month of March” from Marketwatch. Foreign Policy Class, talked about North Korea
  • Thursday: Read a CNN article on the New South African President after President Zuma steps down
  • Friday: Did not read or watch the news anywhere. Watched some youtube videos on video games and practiced for Overwatch.
  • Saturday: Watched some Fox Business to see what commodities are trading up for this coming week. Friend talks to me about pop culture and sports
  • Sunday: I read an article about the Supreme Leader of Iran issuing an apology to Iranian people for not cracking down on justice and improving the nation’s economy

I tend to only stick to these news sources because most of them are politically centralized and talk about investing. Reflecting on this week I noticed I don’t take as much of an interest in domestic politics as I do foreign politics.I should also note that I don’t have social media or look up trending pop culture topics because I don’t consider them to be important. The only time I receive any type of information on pop culture is through my friends. Next, I noticed that I have most of my app notifications set to “important world and economic issues,” which could also be linked to my ideological biases. For the most part, when it comes to public policy I read articles that are both positive and negative. Bloomberg has a politics view section where a viewer can be exposed to both sides of the argument. I find this rather informative, but I try to stay away from it. I would rather read the “iron core news” than read/watch advocacy news. I will admit on the outside most of my news sources seem to solely be based on economics and business, however, the websites are full of both political and economic news.

Furthermore, I would have to say these sources do reflect my personal points of view. Because I consider myself to be politically centralized I regularly read CNN and Bloomberg. I try to read as much traditional news as possible, but it is increasingly getting more difficult. Another reason why I might use these sources is that I’m focused on buying and selling stocks. If I didn’t trade stocks I would only stay informed through my Political Science classes. The overarching bias I have towards all news is solely ideological. In my opinion, most news sources are either based on advocacy or entertainment. I do feel like I could do a better job finding more traditional articles, but it is very time-consuming. Finally, I could start paying attention to more social and cultural issues because those factors contribute to governmental changes.

Media Diary

Fox News V CNN

Is Russia Laughing at us?

By: John Rodriguez

This past Sunday, President Trump posted several tweets regarding Russian involvement in the 2016 Presidential election. Specifically, the President tweeted a dismissal of any collusion between his administration officials and the Russians.  He also laid blame and pointed the finger at previous government officials to include President Obama for lack of action.  President Trump’s “hottest tweet” was about the Russian’s possibly “laughing their asses off” at the U.S. government’s failure to contain and eliminate the Russian security breach. In this article I will compare how two popular news sources (CNN and Fox News) provided coverage of the Trump “laughing their asses off in Moscow” tweet, to determine if there are biases in media.

The CNN article titled “Trump: They are laughing their asses off in Moscow over Russia investigation” focused on Trump’s behavior toward the Russian situation and Rep. Adam Schiff comments on both Trump and Obama. Maegan Vazquez frames the news article to be more of a traditional news by stating complete facts, but it eventually becomes an advocacy when she indirectly offers her own opinion. Had she just posted Trump’s tweets and provided background information on them it would have been labeled as traditional. However, Vazquez picked and chose tweets that labeled Trump as unknowing and having bad intuition. For example, Vazquez makes it a point to disprove one of Trump’s old tweet where he claimed Russian involvement was a “hoax” (Vazquez, 3). Vazquez then states, “Trump took Vladimir Putin’s word that Russia did not interfere in the election,” not sure how this is related to his tweet about Russia laughing their asses off (Vazquez, 3). Another example of this article is an advocacy instead a traditional news source is when Vazquez quotes other leaders thoughts and ideas. For example, Vazquez refers to Rep. Adam Schiff comments on Trump’s State of the Union address which state, “The President claims vindication anytime someone sneezes,” (Vaquez,3). Again, not sure how this relates to Trump’s tweets on Russia, but one can assume that to pander to all viewers CNN had to also attack the opposing side. She also briefly refers to Rep. Schiff older comments on the Obama administration not placing enough sanctions on Russians for the breach in security. By picking and choosing different quotes from different people means there is a framing going on. Because the article attacks both the right and the left one can assume the news network takes a more centralized stance. I would argue Vazquez’s article is a little more biased against Trump because there is an uneven amount of critiques for both sides. It would make the most sense to stick to an even amount of critiques or eliminate all advocacy altogether if CNN wants to remain “moderate”.

The Fox News article titled “Trump says Russians ‘laughing their a—s off’ over US collusion probes,” focused on Trump dismissing any collusion with Russia, Trump criticizing Rep. Schiff, and mocking journalist A.F. Brandco. Joseph Weber attempts to frame the news article to be a traditional news source by only stating complete information on the 13 indicted Russian nationals and Trump’s tweets (Weber, 2). However, Weber later turns the article into an advocacy by defending Trump’s claim that he had not colluded with Russia as opposed to quoting Trump’s tweets and leaving it at that. For example, Weber refers to General McMaster comments on Crooked Hillary colluding with Russians and Trump not being involved (Weber, 5). General McMasters quote clearly has nothing to do with Trump’s tweet on the Russians “laughing their asses off”. It would appear the quote is meant to discount any possible doubt in Trump not colluding with Russia. Another example that demonstrates this article is an advocacy news article is the fact Weber supported Trump’s retweet, mocking CNN report A.F. Brandco (Weber, 3). By picking and choosing references and quotes to defend Trump’s actions and not simply state the tweets themselves makes this article an advocacy. Based on Weber’s choice of quotes a reader could assume Weber is pandering toward the more right-leaning citizens because he does not critique any of Trump’s tweets. But Weber takes it a step further and mentions Trump’s retweet mocking Bradnco.

Now, both news sources attempted to provide objective news but eventually turned to advocacy news. This can be attributed to news networks being as Alex Jones states “businesses,” meaning that these companies need to maximize profit to increase shareholder value. For example, CNN’s viewer base is mostly moderate with a lean to the left, therefore, they must create articles that pander to these viewers to make a profit and keep their base. FOX News instead, panders toward more conservative viewers to make a profit and must do the opposite. Another comparison I drew between these articles is that they both read the same tweets but reported differently on them. Trump’s tweet on Adam Schiff blaming the Obama administration for Russia meddling in the 2016 election was depicted as a satire toward Adam Schiff by FOX. While CNN saw Trump’s tweet as a direct attack against the Obama administration but allowed it because it was based on fact. Both news media sources used this tweet to help further their framing, but in different ways. If media is to improve and be more “objective” meaning 100% fact with few biases or “Iron core” as Alex Jones calls it, journalist need to put aside personal beliefs and profit motives to make the news more traditional.

 

References

Vazquez, Maegan (2018). Trump: They are laughing their asses off in Moscow’ over Russia

Investigation.

Retrieved from https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/18/politics/trump-russia-laughing-moscow-tweets/index.html

Weber. Joseph (2018). Trump says Russians ‘laughing their a—s off’ over US collusion probes.

Retrieved from

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/02/18/trump-says-russians-laughing-their-s-off-

ver-us-collusion-probes.html.

 

 

Fox News V CNN

Teresa Cropper’s Media Diary

The news sources I used this week were all online and are as listed: CNN, New York Times, Austin Statesman, Twitter, and CBS. 

This week was a busy week for me as I had a four-day long swim meet so I was not quite as active in looking at the news. A major source of news for me is my news app on my iPhone which sends me notifications from a variety of news sources. CNN is the most consistent news source which I am notified of and that is read beyond just the headline. As for seeking news without the help of my news app, I relied on the New York Times, CBS and the Austin Statesman. The New York Times is a news source that I generally trust which is why I used this source this week. As for CBS, I received reports of the Parkland shooting that occurred this week through live updates but otherwise, this is not a typical news source for me. As for the Austin Statesman, it is a reliable local news source. Unlike other local news sources, the Austin Statesman posts online articles frequently and covers more areas other than just Austin. Twitter as a form of news this week was not a source of news that I sought out as I didn’t scroll through Twitter’s “moments” or look at any reporters/news sources twitter. I got my news from Twitter this week as I was scrolling through my feed and was bombarded with political news in wake of the Parkland shooting.

 

My reliance on sources such as CNN and the New York Times may reflect my left-leaning personal beliefs. These news sources are also left-leaning and I typically don’t feel frustrated or confused by the political beliefs engrained in articles as I might when reading an article from Fox, for example. However, I recognize this bias and take accountability for it by exposing myself to the other side (although I didn’t this week), even if their bias may confuse or anger me.

 

Using my Twitter feed as a news source reflects my bias in a much more intense way than the news sources listed above. One of these biases is the age of people which I am receiving news from. The majority of people I follow on twitter are my age, as well as people that they “retweet”. Additionally, I have narrowed down my feed to those that politically align with my views. It is harder for myself to balance out left-leaning views with right-leaning views as I have geared this social media platform towards my preferences. While this week I did not do this, I tend to check twitter “moments”. Twitter moments are compiled tweets from a variety of people concerning a certain issue. Twitter moments typically expose me to a wider age range as well as more political difference. I am not sure if Twitter uses an algorithm based on users preferences based on their Twitter activity but if so then surely it is affecting the twitter moments I see.

Teresa Cropper’s Media Diary

Rebecca’s Article Comparison

The articles that I have decided to compare both cover the same news story, the shooting that occurred in Florida this past week and the comments that President Trump’s administration made about the shooting being a “reprieve” from the bad publicity that currently plagues the administration.

Whilst both of the articles covered the general facts of the event, they focused on a number of different subtopics.

The Daily Mail used their article to promote other news stories that they had broken about the Trump Administration such as Rob Porter who allegedly abused his ex-wives. This deflects from the main purpose of the article and exposes you to other stories that are unravelling at the same time as the current one being written about.

The Daily Mail article is more sensationalist in its use of language and choice of topics and refers multiple times to affairs that it is alleged the President had. The extent of the sensationalism in the CNN article was when President Trump’s tweeting was described as “ranting.”

The wording by the Daily Mail article is quite interesting, as the article starts they use phrases such as “Then it was found” and “First it was revealed”, phrases which seem disapproving of the administration, this theme continues throughout and even when references are made to trips which the President is due to take, the author makes sure he passes comment on the fact that the scandals will “resurface.” The wording in the CNN article seems to be unbiased, there are limited clear personal opinions allowing for the article to be very to the point. I found this style of journalism to be particularly intriguing as it shows the difficulties that exist when attempting to write an article from a non-partisan point of view.

The length of the article also varies between the two selected. The CNN articles seems more to the point whereas as the Daily Mail article brings in other stories that are also related it is much longer in length. This is both good and bad, the CNN article gives you the story that you’re clearly interested in, the key facts that relate whereas the Daily Mail article not only gives you the story at hand but others that are related. For a reader this amount of coverage would easily sway you in favour of the author of the piece, one would assume from reading the Daily Mail article that the administration is currently suffering whereas this is not as evident in the CNN article.

The CNN article refers to other news sources and credits them for specific information (The Washington Post) whereas in the Daily Mail article, in addition to the Washington Post being credited in the body text of the article there is a “read more” section with a link to a New York Times article that covers the same story. I believe this to be an admirable quality of both articles to credit other sources as it gives the article more strength and reaffirms journalistic integrity.

I found it particularly interesting that the CNN article ends with a comment on gun control, that the President is to hold “a session with high schoolers” whereas this is not mentioned in the Daily Mail article. This is due to the fact that both articles are attempting to appeal to different political demographics and consequently cover different subtopics under the main topic.

Articles Used:

CNN: www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/donald-trump-parkland-florida-shooting-reprieve-bad-publicity-white-house-a8218746.html

Daily Mail: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5411007/White-House-official-says-Florida-shooting-reprieve.html

Rebecca’s Article Comparison

media bias towards donald trump and his tweets

CNN article “9 totally unpresidential things Donald Trump tweeted over Presidents Day weekend,” by Chris Cillizza falls under the category of “bias.” This article is featured on CNN’s multiplatform brand “The Point with Chris Cillizza” that analyze the day’s news. Chris Cillizza is a CNN Politics reporter and an Editor at large.  The point includes daily columbs, on-air analysis, and evening newsletter, podcast, and the launch of trivia night events in Washington, DC.

In this article, the use of confirmation bias is used, meaning it is seeking out information that confirms beliefs. In this case, it used President Donald Trump’s tweets taken from his official twitter account in order to demonstrate “that President Donald Trump is the least presidential president who has ever presidented.” (Cillizza 2018) The way in which the information is written and framed makes the article bias. The article ranks the presidents tweets from 1 to 10; the unit of measurement was unpresidentialness. 1 equaled being President Abraham Lincoln and 10 equaled Presidents Beavis and Butt-head.

This article is bias against President Donald Trump. Aside from the intense scale of measurement, the article assumes a lot about what the President is doing. “Cooped up at Mar-a-Lago – Trump didn’t play golf either Saturday or Sunday out of concern of how it might look when funerals were ongoing for the victims of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida.” (Cillizza 2018) The article also infers Donald Trump to be the complete opposite of what we consider presidential because of how the article frames his road to office. “From the campaign he ran to get to the White House to how he acted since arriving 365 days ago, Trump seems to take pride in dashing expectation of how a president should act, speak or tweet.” (Cillizza 2018) Overall, the purpose of this article is aims at suggesting that the President Donald Trump is not fit for office. The title itself, “9 totally unpresidential things Donald Trump tweeted over Presidents Day weekend” implies that he is not fit for office. The juxtaposition of “unpresidential’ and “Presidents Day” really show how there is a contrast to what they believe is considered “presidential.”

In order to see the effect of bias on the reader, a study could be conducted. The age of the participants would depend on who you are trying to see being affected by bias. Also each region/location could be affected differently, so one study would not be a good determinant of the overall population. The study would involve a group of people that can be evenly divided by people who voted for Donald Trump and people who didn’t, and then people who did not vote at all. Dividing them by their vote I think is important because you are voting for someone who you believe would be “presidential.” The group that did not vote at all would be a good variable to measure because they could potentially not have an ideological stance on the president. Then you could have them read articles, about Trump’s tweeting and the articles would be either objective, or close to objective, and the others would demonstrate bias. Afterwards they could take a small test that asks them whether or not Donald Trump said a certain “unpresidential” quote. The quotes would be made up by previous Presidents, and Donald Trump. Then the results could show if there is a bias towards Donald Trump being unpresidential.

Cillizza, Chris. 2018. “9 totally unpresidential things Donald Trump tweeted over Presidents Day weekend.” CNN Politics, February 19. Accessed February 19, 2018. https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/19/politics/trump-tweets-presidents-day/index.html

media bias towards donald trump and his tweets