In a world awash in disinformation, there’s no ‘both sides’ to the truth. The media must stop enabling liars. My column https://t.co/GoB3WeYybf
— Margaret Sullivan (@Sulliview) December 17, 2018
Margaret Sullivan, former NYTimes Public Editor, subtweets the suits who eliminated her position rather than use the L-word:
Lies are coming at the American public in torrents — raining down on them everywhere they turn.
A report prepared for the Senate Intelligence Committee, and obtained by The Washington Post, made that breathtakingly clear over the weekend. The intentional spreading of disinformation on every platform — from Facebook all the way to PayPal — should frighten everyone who cares about democracy.
One place that truth can prevail is in the reality-based news media, where editorial judgment comes into play.
That means it’s more important than ever not to give falsehoods a megaphone there.
Which brings us to Chris Cuomo’s 39-minute interview Thursday with Kellyanne Conway, President Trump’s top dissembler.
It should have been no surprise that Conway — who coined the immortal phrase “alternative facts” in early 2017 — blithely spun her way through the interview…
Perhaps most absurd among Conway’s declarations was her objection to Cuomo’s referring to Trump as a liar, although she wouldn’t repeat the term. “You’re saying he’s not telling the truth. That’s a slur. That’s a slur.”…
The news media continues — even now when it should know better — to be addicted to “both sides” journalism. In the name of fairness, objectivity and respect for the office of the presidency, it still seems to take Trump — along with his array of deceptive surrogates — at his word, while knowing full well that his word isn’t good.
When major news organizations publish tweets and news alerts that repeat falsehoods merely because the president uttered them, it’s the same kind of journalistic malpractice as offering a prime interview spot to Kellyanne Conway…
When news organizations hand a megaphone to lies — or liars — they do actual harm. What the president himself says must be reported, of course, but only within the context of what we know.
To state it without immediate, adjacent reference to factual reality is to enter the Kellyanne Zone.
In an era rife with disinformation — and American democracy teetering on a precipice — that’s the wrong place to be.
Current NYTimes TV critic, who should know:
Networks, stop telling yourselves this is OK just because your anchors push back. You're doing no one a service by producing viral clips where "WATCH: [Anchor] Totally Shuts Down [Guest]." If someone is willing to lie on your air, they shouldn't be on your air. https://t.co/j7MgCitHwH
— James Poniewozik (@poniewozik) December 18, 2018
— Kevin JF Topp 🏳️🌈 (@keverzoid) December 18, 2018