The not-so-Invisible Observer
"The news clearly has a relationship to the truth, but it is never simply equivalent to it" (6).
This theme is central to the text, It Ain't Necessarily So. As such, the authors reiterate this idea numerous times throughout the introduction and chapter one. Indeed, the authors successfully keep this theme in the forefront of their reader's minds. In the intro, this idea is presented as the cornerstone to the purpose of the book, which is to inform an interested public of the filters that supposed "facts" unavoidably pass through en route to news print publications, and to suggest how to detect and interpret these filters. Throughout the first chapter, the authors continually relate this idea to their theories behind the absence of seemingly newsworthy statistics and reports. All the theories boil-down to an unavoidable human aspect in news reporting: profession-wide dependences on negative biases, news story templates, and press-releases from outside sources.
To me, this multi-faceted theme says loud and clear that the concept of the invisible observer in journalism is a euphoric principle that all journalists strive towards, but because of the nature of humanity, will never truly grasp in their writing. Unconsciously, print journalism, and all media sources as a whole, will always tilt in favor of those who write and report the news - depending upon their defining characteristics, background, readership etc. Even if the reporter doesn’t directly involve himself in an article, by simply deciding that one story is news and another story isn’t news will always curb the public’s interpretation of the truth.
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