You say media, I say manipulation

In the 21st century, everything is accessible on the internet and the way people interpret the information on the internet is entirely based off the presentation of it. Today’s social media network is an addiction that most Americans are guilty of, just no one admits it. That being said, I am a fellow cell-phone addict, I can find myself being manipulated and persuaded to agree with the information I read online. All the information found on media sites are normally subjective to author’s morals and conception of the information they obtain, altering how the audience perceives the information. I manipulate my little siblings to do what I want by adjusting what I say to make it more appealing to them. I’d make them feel like they are doing the right thing or letting them think they are getting something out of what I’m asking them to do. Media networks work the same way to get the reader to be persuaded on the subject they are writing about. While monitoring the Fox News media outlet online I noticed the same trend in their media. However, all the other groups provided information that they also notice the same trends as well.

Most of the information Fox reports is based on politics and the U.S. social issues involving government. All the headliner’s I observed in my journal were based on social issues involving the government or based off politics. For the entire week, the three major headliners in my group were the following: The Kentucky clerk that wouldn’t issue same sex marriage licenses, catching the murderer of the cop in Chicago, and the issue of Hillary Clinton and 500 classified emails. These issues were repeatedly covered throughout the week and all three revolved around some aspect of the government. From my personal observations they all seemed to revolve around the centralized theme of political science. During group discussion it was surprising to me how each channel had their own main topic; ESPN is centrally based of sports, CNN is more social and science information, NBC was a broad over view on everything, while Fox was more of politics. This showed a broad range of what was covered over each media station. It really amazed me the amount that you could absorb from each different media source had such a large range, yet the major headliner events were covered in almost all of the sources.

Fox News is known for being on the more conservative side politically. Based off my observations I would confirm the assumptions that Fox News side’s way more with the Republican Party on the issues they report. The presentation of all the articles pointed to a more conservative position on the subjects being discussed. Each headline for an article was manipulated by the author to set a tone and suggest the author’s point of view on the subject. The article was already to subject the audience to a certain view. For example, one of the articles I monitored was an article on European refugee’s that was linked to criticism of Hillary Clinton which was evident in the headline, “European Refugee Crisis: Problem for Clinton?” The authors wording of the title ties a negative connotation to the article which puts a negative view on Clinton before the audience even reads the piece. The article then continues the negative outlook on Clinton which ends up ending the article talking about her 2016 run for president. I noticed how Fox had multiple articles about Clinton which they slyly connect into her run for president. See the story here:

Being a republican myself I tried to see the different sides to the story and when I did it was evident that these stories are not from a neutral perspective. Even I know that it isn’t Clinton’s fault for all the refugees in Europe. I don’t want her to be president in 2016, but the article paints her in a different light. I was aware the Fox News was a conservative news channel, but was surprised by how the articles were not very neutral, they upheld more of an opinionative voice across the board of the news channel. With another articles I observed it talked about how President Obama was renaming Mt. McKinley to Denali.  The article convinced you not to side with Obama’s plan to change it just by the context of what the article presented. Even though the article did have ethos and pathos to persuade what the viewers may think the article provided credible facts saying that it is “constitutional overreach” since the mountain needed to be changed by law and Obama couldn’t just change it without going through Congress. The information told in each article gave credible facts just with a tone of the authors’ opinion which altered the piece completely.  


I came to notice that the layout of the Fox articles all included links to videos of anchors talking about the subject the article was on. Many other groups like: ESPN, NBC, CNN, and many others also had links to videos attached to each article as well. For me, this connects to how our modern society is transferring into a superior technological era. Everything is being put available on the internet, which is cutting printed work out of the picture; the age of hardcopy work is slowly coming to an end.  This proves to show that the world around us is being shaped by what is put online. Even in every media site you see advertisements which shows how the companies for advertisement are jumping on board and partnering with large media sites. The news companies use their website and apps for smartphones to connect straight into the hands of people being able to persuade them into believing anything they read.  Since large media sites can do this they can make a profit of off company advertisements as well so the media networks are in a win-win scenario.  

Overall, Fox news gave me insight how the world in general is changing and adapting to the technological advances we keep moving toward. Media connects us to everyday events and gives information that is out there for our interpretation. However, the general census is that the information given will seldom be from a neutral source. News articles use media to spread their messages and views. The online media is breaking traditional barriers of the way people consume information and from opinions. The way the world is transforming from the internet is leading us down a path that is beneficial, but potentially harming.

written by Gabby Gillis


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