Is media inevitably biased? Can we build a truly objective media outlet? — Wong Toa

In my opinion, media is not inevitably biased. It really depends on whether the journalists and the people being part of the media system willing to make this step to combat these filters and develop a strong sense and beliefs. The following are some possible directions to combat each filter.

Ownership

The media always have to meet the dilemma of how to balance between public’s interest and corporate interest. Because some media is owned by large corporations which may have conflict of interest in the publication. I think the media can set guideline in deciding to be owned by what corporations. They can either choosing corporations which do not have their own political tendencies, or corporations which can bear with the media to publish news which may have slight conflict with the corporation’s beliefs. The media can choose not publish news which are prone to each side of the news, reporting it neutrally and have a balance in stance instead.

Advertising

In a commercialized world, media is inevitably including advertisements. One thing media can do is cut down advertising and rely on more on funding from the public as much as possible. They should focus more on quality and adjust the tendency of the media, when the news is professional enough, public will provide funding for the media to self-operate themselves.

Sourcing

Media has various of sources of information, one important role journalists have is judging on the right and verified source to publish in the media. But it sometimes is hard to check if the source is really that reliable. New media can rely on sources provided by the public, and fast check by double verification with other sources to verify the information is valid. When reporters cannot be anywhere but the media has to cover incidents happening everywhere, public may be a good source to rely on.

Flack

To stand firm and not being defeated by the powerful party and individuals, they have to have faith in the things they are doing. They should continue reporting the inappropriate and worth noticing acts, what they are reporting will directly influence public’s understanding in the situation in Hong Kong. When they know such things, this will arouse their attention and discontent, they probably will carry out protests and campaigns to fight against them. The parties’ and government’s actions will be likely self controlled and behaved better according to public’s reactions. The media should well use public’s joint effort and trust their effects on the powerful.

Ideological Marginalization

The media should set a borderline for the exposure of the information and evidence they got. They should strike a balance between what the public is necessarily know and what is really far from public’s mind and on the area that they are not supposed to know. There are some information will cause great impacts and great social differentiation. The media should be aware of it and think deeply before making these kinds of decisions.