A Discussion of Media Bias and Sensationalized Reporting in News Journalism

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Media bias is an issue that has been in discussion for a long time (Sloan and Jenn, 12). In most cases, the media presents information in the way they desire it to be perceived and not the way the situation was at the scene. In order to expound on this, the article ‘Advertisers are looking inside your brain: Neuro-marketing is here and it knows what you want’ has bias that can easily mislead a reader. This title is misleading and falls under bias through headlines. Direct interpretation of this title may mean that advertisers have means of literally looking into someone’s brains which is not realistic in real life. This article is a news story and as such should be direct and straightforward to enable all classes of people understand and benefit from the information dispatched.

Another article that can clearly display media bias is ‘Gum is stuck: How Hershey is trying to get more people chewing again’. This article can also be misleading to the reader as it can be perceived to mean that gum is literally stuck. In the same article, another subtitle ‘wailing manufacturers’ can also be misleading to readers as it can be perceived to mean that the manufacturers are literally crying. The title and subtitle of this article both fall under bias through the use of names and titles. In addition to this, the title also falls under bias by headlines. This article falls under news story and needs to indicate precisely what it needs to put across.

The guidelines put forward by KVUE for news reporting are good for the public. These guidelines are reasonable and need to be incorporated by other media groups. I support these guidelines mainly because news should revolve around people’s daily activities and it should mainly focus on what the society needs to know. Although violence and crime should not go unreported, such news should be minimized because they do not concern the public in general. In the event of such news, the public should be notified of the impending insecurity danger in the society and should give guidelines on how to stay safe and how to protect one’s self. The guidelines given by KVUE do not need any amendment for removal or addition of any other guidelines. This is because these guidelines cover precisely what is supposed to be followed so as to streamline news reporting criteria.

Local stations rely on crime reporting to boost ratings because crime news attract many people and makes headlines alarming and catching (Sloan and Jenn, 29). This makes the stations to have many viewers and subscribers thus boosting their ratings. Such news create tension in people and make them feel unsafe. This makes them tune on the station more frequently to know if crimes are happening in their immediate neighborhood so that they can see how safe their locality is. In addition to that, since crime reporting is very sensitive to the public, such news make viewer’s perceive that the news reporters are very keen and alert in capturing news. This makes them glued to the station thus boosting the ratings of the station or newspaper (Sloan and Jenn, 66).

From research and personal experience, it is true that sensationalized reporting causes fear among people and makes them feel powerless (Sloan and Jenn, 59). This is mainly because sensationalized news are normally crime related and tend to make people feel insecure and hopeless. In addition to that, news reporters tend to give biased information that will be more sensational so as to capture their audience and boost their ratings. This makes people feel powerless and insecure thus breeding a poor society than it is expected. Such sensational news can also invoke other criminals to act in more criminal ways so that they can be captured in news and make headlines (Sloan and Jenn, 85).

The KVUE guidelines are responsible news reporting guidelines. In the article, the murder of the three men that was not reported was a good decision by the journalists because it had no impending threats to the society and was not a crime prevention story. The murder had already happened and the cause of the murder could not spread to endanger the lives of other citizens. In another incident, the murder at the University of Texas was not reported because the eighty two years old man who had killed his wife had no police record and had no immediate threat to neighbors or the police. The shooting by the Wal Mart parking lot was reported because the suspects were on the run and this posed great danger to the lives of many people.

From another standpoint, the KVUE guidelines can also be misleading because they do not cover the “who’, ‘what’, ‘when’ and “where” of a story but mainly concentrates on how to prevent crime. This can be misleading to people in the same area who want to get information of what really took place on the scene. Another critique about the guidelines is that it does not allow people to be connected with those who suffered the tragedy but hides information which makes it hard for people to unite and give condolences to the victim.

The sites ‘Earthsave international’ and ‘Ladies against women’ have an objective approach to the news they are putting across. In consideration to earthsave international, the site is very objective and supports plant based foods and is alleging that such meals can help cure diseases. In their videos, earthsave international participants are stating that the meals provided by the organization are better medicine than the ones they were initially being given by medical hospitals. This is basically objective and not realistic in real life. In addition to that, the site is stating that taking their meals in 30 days has a big effect on one’s health. This is also objective because the meals they are prescribing to people are meals like any other taken in peoples’ daily diets.

Another site that has objectivity in information dissemination is ‘Ladies against women’. This site states that ladies should not be paid for duties they perform including childcare. It states that no lady should be paid for duties that a real lady does in her home for free. Such information is purely objective and cannot apply in the society where payment for work done is mandatory. In another instance, the site states that ladies should not have conjugal rights. It states that sex should exclusively be for procreation and not for recreation for ladies. Such information is purely objective and cannot be supported in the society.


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A Discussion of Media Bias and Sensationalized Reporting in News Journalism. (2023, Jan 03). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/a-discussion-of-media-bias-and-sensationalized-reporting-in-news-journalism/

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