Thursday, February 23, 2017

American Journalism in the Era ofFacebook, President Trump and Red Ink

Reflections: 
Does Facebook and other social media corporations play a role in the proliferation of fake news ? And if so, do these mega-rich corporations have an obligation as some suggest Would a cash influx make a big difference in the future of American journalism, especially in the era of President Trump, fake news and alternative facts?

The chief question may be, what would represent a disruption in journalism, the same type of disruption that Donald Trump represented in American politics in 2016 that cleared a pathway to the presidency? Did that disruption already come and go with the rise and influence of Hunter S. Thompson's gonzo journalism in the 70s? Is journalism by its nature too conservative a profession to be able to forge a new path?  Is journalism in danger or and in need of disruptive change or is it the current political climate that suggests that it is disfubctional if not on its last legs?Can journalism, even if completely torn from any reliance on newsprint and TV adverts really survive if it became even more of a web-based entity? Does a new, til now unforeseen business model of journalism exist within the American business enterprise system? Could and should a BBC-style model of American journalism and media evolve in the US to compete with purely profit-driven models ?

Is quality American journalism fighting with one hand tied behind its back as it is wedded to the Superman virtues( of truth justice and The American Way) while its corporate overseers and need to meet payrolls demand profitability ?

It seems like there remain many more questions and no easy answers as journalism faces continuing challenges with the continuing disappearance of local media and the pressures of a new government Administration that paints much of MSM and actually any news outlet that strives for objective coverage  as the "enemy."  The future of journalism in an era of ascendant public ignorance and 1984-style rule-by-misinformation remains a big question mark, but journalists need to keep up the struggle, holding that lamp high, and the profession as a whole needs to consider all options, remaining open to risk and experiment. The survival of American journalism, and the American Democratic Experiment, depend on it.
Anthony Napoli
Deep in the Heart of Brooklyn

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Current Reading

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Current Listening

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