Fake News in mainstream media: my experience as a photographer and writer.
enzo dal verme

As someone who has spent about the same amount of time working with the media … all I can say is that this is an excellent article…it is actually quite along the lines of a couple of discussions I have been having lately…

I wrote this as a reply to a story a couple of days ago…. and it willsave a lot of time for me not having to re-type all of this again

ntegrity doesn’t just “mean a lot” — it is everything in our line of work. Unfortunately, that principle keeps fading on daily bases.

I can not disagree with most of the article, yet there is one effect (or should I say a phenomena) which is not being touched. and that is the influence of the audiences in lowering the standards…

I am among the fortunate ones- ( Beside the fact that I have been doing this long enough, and have enough trust to be able to work unchecked) I work for the biggest media house down here which, also is the public broadcaster — so, we are not dependent on the commercial income (although we have a Shi!!load of other problems) . But I did work for privately owned media, and most of my colleagues still do- and if you are privately owned, it has become extremely difficult to do proper work….

The reasons: Well, the audiences, in the times when no one wishes to spend more than 30 seconds getting their info, and when actually following or reading deeper insights about what is happening is reserved for very few people, you can not really be competitive on the market and manage to provide fast and reliable info — the audiences are not interested in it. most people in the past decade or so are much more interested in reading sensationalist headlines(If at all possible headlines that already confirm what the person is already thinking) — then reading through the facts and making up their own minds — they want it fast, explosive… truth is secondary in this equation.

And yes- I understand it is not the best possible way to function- but, faced with a choice between keeping the medium working- or being professional- most owner choose not to get bankrupt. The journalists and reporters who do not comply with the new way of functioning- get to look for new jobs…

Lately, even the BBC, the media house responsible for most of what we know as modern reporting has been getting flack for being too “old fashioned” and not having enough explosive snippets and fast but unchecked headlines…

There is another phenomena at play here- one which has been as good as it has been bad for media all overt he world . “citizen journalists” ( or whichever name is being used now)… Yes, ever since everyone can point their phone or camera, witness something and then tell the world about it the stories have been coming in much quicker, but also there has been an exponential increase in, so called “fake news”… People can complain about the “old way” of media functioning- but it did have built in checks and balances which generally stopped us from giving out false info… nowadays, very few of us have the luxury to double check- triple check something, go to opposing sources and get the story… most reporters jump on the first gun since they know that if they stop to confirm- someone else will pick it up first. anyone remember what happened with a couple of kids from Macedonia who ha a bit of fun on their website and media houses picked up their horsing around…. they were afraid that someone else might do it before. Next thing you now — — global “fake news” paranoia

I have been doing this since I was 18 ( A it more, but I count from the moment I started getting paid for my work) — and I have seen the media change in so many ways in just a bit over 20 years that on some levels it is a completely new playing field. Most, if not all of these changes were driven by he requests of the audiences…. “Fake news” — is just another thing. But neither will the fake news, nor the low quality of writing, or even the quality of information we get change- before the audiences decide to change. Until the vast majority of people look for sensationalist (biased to confirm) headlines and no substance- that is what media will serve.

BTW — I have a question for you guys. Should this have been an independent article, or did I do good by leaving it as a reply?