When Pundits Run Wild…

I’ve gotten emails asking why I haven’t tee’d off on MSNBC for using its bomb throwing talking heads to cover a news event last night instead of people trained to do the job.

My response is this. I complained long and loud about using talking heads during the 08 primaries. It had not impact. I complained about the meltdowns at the conventions. It had no impact. NBC’s Washington Bureau had a mini-revolt at a town hall bureau meeting which only temporarily forced the network to rein things in. But it was only temporary. Come the inauguration, they talking heads were back at it again and it’s been that way ever since. MSNBC doesn’t care. Phil Griffin doesn’t care. He’s doing what your basic broadcast entertainment programmer would do, ride the hot glove. Until there’s an embarrassment of colossal proportions that the News Division cannot wipe away easily, and last night’s Michelle Bachman interview doesn’t come close enough, nothing is going to change that. I tried to watch the network last night but frequently found myself switching over to CNN and its annoying Election Matrix and sardine can squished together panel discussion groups or FNC which suffered for not having Shepard Smith front the newscast – I started watching Fox Broadcast instead of FNC at one point because of the Shep “gap”. I switched because I just couldn’t take the incessant progressive partisan talking when I wanted to hear something a lot more grounded in reality than ideology. MSNBC only became watchable for extended periods at 2am when the bomb throwers left and a journalist took over with another panel…a panel that included a conservative. The horror!

Look, I know it’s wrong and you know it’s wrong. But MSNBC isn’t concerned with whether if it’s wrong or not and as long as they don’t end up hugely embarrassing the news division they’ll continue to ride the whirlwind with the bomb throwers. Given that, I have little interest in repeating myself. There’s only so many ways you can say “you’re wrong” before you get bored. And I’m bored.

Incidentally, I would generally agree with Mediaite that FNC’s coverage was probably on average the most consistent.

Related: Phil Griffin explains the cable news election night audience…

I note this because it more or less re-enforces what I wrote on Mediaite about cable news’ politics obsession being aimed at a particular demographic, the politics junkie.

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68 Responses to “When Pundits Run Wild…”

  1. – I have little interest in repeating myself —

    Hear hear. And there’s always gonna be pinheads who point it out, as though you’re giving a pass to MSNBC. It’s your basic ‘tingly leg’-scenario.

  2. I watched pretty much this way, too, alhough I bailed on CNN early because the “airport full of people” format drove me batty. I caught the last hour of MSNBC’s Leftfest, which was plenty. Aside from the obvious problems with the concept from a journalistic standpoint, there’s another that would be exclusive to MSNBC’s regular viewers: We’ve heard every word they’re going to say every day for two years. I don’t have to watch..I can check the vote totals on MSNBC.com, and guess the script in my head. Boring.

    The Jansing group was predictable, too, for someone that watches as much cable news as I do, but you get a combination of straight vote reporting, and spirited ideological exchanges. Much more interesting, and exactly what FNC did all night.

    My favorite night of the year is Election Night..and my favorite news channel SUCKS at it.

  3. I agree the MSNBC crowd was biased’ and I also think along with Milbank and the CSJ that FNC is biased as well. I just don’t think it really matters.

    There are lots of ‘unbiased’ networks to watch and why every network has to follow the exact same format is just beyond me. Everyone knows MSNBC has a left wing POV and by having Jansing and a carefully balanced group of pundits & hosts do the show it’s still going to have a left wing POV. FNC is the reverse and everyone knows it. Bring on Beck and Hannity & O’Reilly; I won’t watch but I don’t care either.

    This hiding behind the fig leaf of fair & balanced is just silly. Kelly & Baier are rightys and we all know it. Shep and maybe Bill Hemmer would be better but when the vast majority of opinion is from the right and who intros Rove & Palin doesn’t really matter.

  4. I enjoyed flipping between Smith’s coverage on the broadcast network and Baier & Kelly on FNC. It was as if the stage managers were choreographing an intricate dance, especially in how the two productions alternated Carl Cameron’s board, the talking heads, etc.

  5. I was also pleased that Fox once again did a good job with balancing the “right’ and “left’ pundits.

  6. …by having Jansing and a carefully balanced group of pundits & hosts do the show it’s still going to have a left wing POV.

    That is not what happened, nor does it ever on Jansing & Co. She’s straight as an arrow, intelligent, asks good questions, listens well, and her panel was evenly balanced. There was nothing “lefty” about it.

  7. ^Joe I agree Jansing is great but I don’t care if it was balanced or not. There was plenty of smart discussion on the MSNBC main panel along with lots of moments to forget just like on all multi-hour election panel discussions. I’m sure there was plenty of biased discussion on CNN & FNC but because the host has a POV doesn’t mean it was a bad show.

    We don’t expect blog coverage to be balanced why do we expect it from privately owned news networks.

    If Mlong or Missy for example were looking at that same Jansing panel you think THEY would feel the same way?

  8. “when the vast majority of opinion is from the right and who intros Rove & Palin doesn’t really matter.”

    Are you talking about the election night coverage? Is that what you claim happened last night?!?

  9. We don’t expect blog coverage to be balanced why do we expect it from privately owned news networks.

    Because blogs are the editorial page of the internet newspaper, not the whole paper. I don’t want cable news reduced to a damn blog, and that’s what Phil Griffin does on election nights. FNC has plenty of problems with fake news and editorial shows disguised as dayside news, but the one they thing they do exceptionally well is election coverage. Even the “shrieking righty” version of Megyn Kelly was banned from the set.

  10. What can one do? I thought that MSNBC did very well, even into its’ evening edition, then, all hell broke lose. Seemed that professionalism went out the window, big time. It asll seemed to roll positive to crazy to rude to “where did that come from” and then back to positive. On and on it went and didn’t calm down until Chris Jansing took over.
    I don’t so much mind the zealotry as I was offended by the rudeness. It seemed that, as they continued to talk among themselves, they were egging eachother into a frenzy. Not what I would have expected.
    The women of MSNBC would have acted far more adult and with a ton more professionalism.

  11. Careful Fritz, $ is a shark and he smells blood in the water…

  12. It seemed that, as they continued to talk among themselves, they were egging eachother into a frenzy.

    My daughter texted me about that (we both hate talking on the phone, work with me). She recently became an MSNBC watcher, mainly because of Rachel Maddow, but doesn’t get home in time for Hardball, and didn’t know who Matthews was. She wanted to know why Rachel and “that guy” were yelling at each other. I didn’t have much of an answer..

  13. I watched Shep on Fox Report and then Fox broadcast (West coast as well, thanks to an online feed). I’ve seen plenty of Kelly’s daytime show and she is not an unbiased journalist, and imho Baier’s show leans right as well, so I skipped FNC after 7:55pm.

    During the other hours I watched MSNBC, wasn’t great but at least the screen wasn’t a crowded mess like CNN. And I do like hearing Lawrence O’Donnell (particularly when he interrupted to push back against the others on the panel). Olbermann is a good anchor when he’s not doing commentary. Maddow (who I watch regularly) didn’t seem to understand why voters might have voted on issues like the economy, instead of the ones she featured on her show.

  14. Maddow (who I watch regularly) didn’t seem to understand why voters might have voted on issues like the economy, instead of the ones she featured on her show.

    Yeah, that’s becoming an increasingly worrying tic with her. Once she becomes convinced this is a Big Deal, she gets scornful that others may be more concerned with that. It’s slowly overpowering her show to the point that I skip it a couple days a week now. I used to watch every day.

  15. Matthews got more and more hyperactive as the night went on. Ikept watching just because it was so awkward and Robinson and O’Donnell, at least, were also looking at him like he was crazy.

  16. joe, I agree about Maddow. She doesn’t seem interested in why people vote the way they do. Her reaction was just disbelief that any of these GOP candidates could have won elections despite all the allegedly disqualifying/offensive things they did and said that were covered on her show. Now, I would vote against these GOP candidates. But obviously a lot of people voted for them, and had reasons, and yet she just assumes they’re uninformed, or crazy, or naive. Not very progressive of her IMO.

  17. …like he was crazy.

    Matthews has the reverse problem of Megyn. He gets more agitated the later it gets; she starts the day at full power, then slowly mellows into something resembling sanity as the day wears on.

  18. Not very progressive of her IMO.

    It’s very young of her. She’ll get there..

  19. lonestar77 Says:

    I would be embarrassed if I was Chuck Todd. The MSNBC panel was embarrassing yet there he was forced to smile at them when they would throw it his way to do the map stuff. As the saying goes, “you are the company you keep”.

  20. I think FNC could have alternated between Bret/Megyn and a Shep/Chris Wallace team. But that would have been difficult since Fox Broadcast got coverage from Shep. I think Bret and Megyn did a really good job. Megyn showed why people like her. She acted like she did on America’s Newsroom, before she got all weird for her own show. I like the toned-down Megyn.

  21. I think what msnbc did was fine, but only because they have NBC News. Throughout the night (at least on the East Coast) you could tune in to NBC for straight-up news reporting the results or you could tune in to msnbc for opinion-based programming. The branding of the broadcasts made it obvious that’s what NBC was going for: NBC News branded their coverage as “Decision 2010″ whereas msnbc branded it as “The Place for Politics 2010,” which to me indicates the difference between the two networks coverage.

  22. Mediaite makes it frivolous to watch any of them. If they could program their site for a “background noise” mode, I could throw away my TV.

  23. [...] brands, not further entwine them.) Their only shot at ratings was to lard up the evening with left-wing robots and let them snark away as the returns rolled in, hoping that progressive viewers would at least [...]

  24. She’s a lot older than me, that’s no excuse! Ratings, now. I guess it’s good for ratings. And a lot of “liberal” bloggers are the same way, I wish they weren’t.

    But still watching MSNBC, because CNN is boring and Fox News (when Shep isn’t the anchor) is biased to the right. Sure, MSNBC is biased to the left, but when my party’s getting killed at the polls and a lot of good people will be losing their jobs, I’d just prefer to watch the network that doesn’t seem delighted by it. (Not shedding a tear for Grayson, though. Too abrasive, didn’t have accomplishments to back it up.)

  25. Megyn showed why people like her. She acted like she did on America’s Newsroom, before she got all weird for her own show. .

    She’s very talented but she’s a perfect example of what’s wrong with Fox News.

    Not only does she not know when to be a straight reporter and when to be a commentator, she allows herself to be used by an O’Reilly when he wants to promote an agenda. Yes, sometimes she fights back but it’s not a strong effort.

    The problem with Fox has always been the commentators pushing an agenda and forcing the straight news people to follow along.

    And personally, I think that was why, in part, Major Garrett left. He didn’t want to keep jumping through the hoops that O’Reilly and others put up for him.

  26. I don’t have the impression that Megyn cares about being a fair news anchor who sticks to the facts and who is equally tough on both sides on political issues. The problem is, Fox doesn’t care that she doesn’t care, as long as her two hours of airtime get better ratings than the competition.

  27. I don’t have the impression that Megyn cares about being a fair news anchor who sticks to the facts and

    Well, you said you didn’t watch Fox last night so you missed her being very good and impartial.

    Which also, to be honest, destroys your second point.

  28. No, it doesn’t. She has her own show. For two hours, every weekday. I’ve watched it dozens of times. It is not a fair and balanced presentation of the news. One night of NOT being biased doesn’t negate two solid hours every weekday of frequently being biased.

  29. Sorry, Mr. Griffin in that tape was, for me, just not believable.

    Every six months he keeps changing what he says his network is about.

    What he did last night was simply throw whatever standards that MSNBC had out the window. They have none anymore.

    It’s an entertainment network with some news. It’s no longer a news network.

  30. It is not a fair and balanced presentation of the news. One night of NOT being biased doesn’t negate two solid hours every weekday of frequently being biased.

    But she’s not a straight news anchor during the day. She’s a commentator/analyst. At other times, like last night, she plays it straight.

    And that’s the problem with her (and has been with all of these networks to a degree). She’s wearing too many hats and blurring the lines between straight news and opinion.

  31. savefarris Says:

    One thing I haven’t seen mentioned: Ed and the panel absolutely crucified the Tea Party in general (and Sharon Angle in particular) for “refusing to speak to the media”. They considered it an affront that these candidates would refuse to “speak to the voters on all these important issues?”

    And yet, when a Republican does wind up on MSNBC, what happens?

    * Matthews tries to gotcha Bachmann over a two-year old off-the-cuff remark and gets excoriated for pulling the same “I’m only going to say my talking points” act that politicians have been doing since the beginning of time.
    * Lawrence O’Donnell cross examines Rand Paul unceasingly over raising the debt ceiling.
    * Matthews rabidly badgers Cantor and the other Republican woman who come on promoting spending cuts without letting them actually answer the question.

    If Republicans are going to be treated like feces, badgered with irrelevant and misleading questions, and treated as hostile witnesses all the while being disrespected, why WOULD they want to appear? If I were treated that way, I’d cancel all media contact too and got the social media route.

  32. Oh please, Farris. They’re being asked to specify what “cut spending” means, and those weasels won’t answer because they know the voters don’t want their stuff cut, and they know they won’t cut them. The path to election for a Republican is to repeat “cut taxes, cut spending”. It’s a cheap, easy lie, and voters like being lied to cheaply and easily. They’ll cut taxes until there insn’t one thin dime coming out of our pockets. They will not cut spending. As a really good shot once said, “Deficits don’t matter.”

  33. “If Republicans are going to be treated like feces, badgered with irrelevant and misleading questions, and treated as hostile witnesses all the while being disrespected, why WOULD they want to appear? If I were treated that way, I’d cancel all media contact too and got the social media route.”

    Your right, and they should go on FNC where they get all the softball questions they can handle and they are treated like the stars they think they are.

  34. Right on, joe! I concour.

  35. imnotblue Says:

    fritz3 Says:
    November 3, 2010 at 6:10 pm

    Fritz, I’m starting to worry that when you make outlandish statements like that, you either actually believe them… or believe that everyone else will just “go along with it.”

    Either way, I’m getting a little worried.

  36. No, Blue, I think he’s serious. It’s a fair assessment of what righties get at FNC. Do you see anybody there asking them what they would cut? They get free reign – including on dayside – to babble about “entitlements, runaway spending, bloated government, overreach, blah blah blah”. The host/anchor/commentator nods along “yes yes yes”, but nobody ever says, “So..military? Social Security? Medicare? Farm subsidies? Whatcha got?” ‘Uhhhh…waste and fraud..?’

  37. – cut —

    Except for Shep. He had somebody on the other day, and this person clearly didn’t expect to be asked for specifics. On Mediaite, it was. He said something about ‘waste and fraud’, and Shep pounced like..you know.

  38. ^ I had a feeling you might have a Shep example I missed. I’m surprised they go on his show. I can just picture it: “Oh damn..wrong studio.”

  39. But she’s not a straight news anchor during the day. She’s a commentator/analyst. At other times, like last night, she plays it straight.

    Hmm.. I could swear that according to FNC themselves, America Live is a news show, and the daytime block starting with America’s Newsroom and running through the end of Fox Report, is the straight news programming from the news division. It’s supposed to be fair and balanced. (With the exception of the 5pm hour, obviously, which is not from the news division.)

    Wow, right now Hayes and Maddow on MSNBC are giving an exactly backwards explanation of how the balance of power in the House affects the Progressive caucus and the Blue Dogs. Maybe I should watch Hannity – at least I’m not disappointed when he gets everything wrong.

  40. Just watched last half of Maddow’s Wednesday night show, and there is only one word to describe her: b!tchy.

    Colby Hall labeled her this way on mediaite, and I have to agree:

    “its almost as though Ms. Maddow has turned into the “mean girl” in High School who is unhappy with the school election and is left only to deride the winner.”

    Sour grapes

  41. “Wow, right now Hayes and Maddow on MSNBC are giving an exactly backwards explanation of how the balance of power in the House affects the Progressive caucus and the Blue Dogs.”

    I saw that and I don’t see your argument. I think many of the BD’s were always going to lose because they were mostly in Republican districts that voted Obama in ’08’. The progressives were in mostly safe districts and so most would survive.

    I think their argument was the BD’s might as well go down fighting rather opposing the Obama agenda and still losing as the Repubs were going to blame them for the agenda anyway.

    That’s a correct argument in theory although I think many of the BD’s were actually pretty conservative to begin with so they were actually voting what they believed.

  42. I couldn’t care less what people have to complain about regarding MSNBC’s coverage. I enjoyed it, it was entertaining, they debated Republicans, and bantered about different subjects. Even Maddow/Matthews and O’Donnell/Matthews disagreed on many issues. It was fun.

  43. imnotblue Says:

    joeremi Says:
    November 3, 2010 at 6:27 pm

    No, Blue, I think he’s serious.

    See, and that’s what’s scary!

    It’s a fair assessment of what righties get at FNC.

    Correction… THAT’S scary!

    Do you see anybody there asking them what they would cut?

    Well, specifically about “what to cut,” yes you do see folks asked that question… but at this point, when the Congress has just switched, it’s somewhat an unreasonable question. It’s like auditioning carpenters to redesign you house, “What are you going to do,” before you let them take a look inside. The big difference is that Republicans want to put a priority on cutting things, finding waste, and removing bloated budgets… the Democrats don’t really list that as one of their priorities at the moment. So “looking for cuts,” while the other party isn’t, IS an answer in and of itself.

    But let’s not dwell on that one issue, since that’s not really what Fritz was saying. His original quote (which I was referring to) was:

    Your right, and they [Republicans] should go on FNC where they get all the softball questions they can handle and they are treated like the stars they think they are.

    Do you believe that when Republicans go on FNC (and he must have been talking about prior to this election to make such a broad statement), they get treated easily? They get softballs lobbed at them by everyone?

    If you believe that, you’re not watching the network. Period.

    Shep Smith is known for tough interviews, O’Reilly doesn’t pull punches, heck even Megyn Kelly has been known to mix it up a bit! Do they do the same type of interviews that you’d see on some of the other networks… perhaps not. But whether that is a reflection of FNC’s bias, or a bias from those networks against Republicans (IOW, they give tougher interviews to Republicans than Democrats), is highly debatable. But to suggest that it’s a cakewalk is simply ignorant… especially in the cable news universe where FNC’s main competition (MSNBC) isn’t afraid to admit that they’re rooting for a particular party, and thusly promoting an ideology (see KO’s “you’ve got a glint in your eye, and we’ve got it here too” comment from last night).

    ProgLib Says:
    November 3, 2010 at 7:37 pm

    I just don’t get how the folks who have continually complained about FNC’s bias, can so quickly change their mind and fawn over MSNBC. We all knew the complaints boiled down to “I don’t like Republicans,” instead of the high and mighty”It’s not journalistic,” blather it was made out to be. But personally, I’d think ya’ll would be a little more concerned about such overt hypocrisy.

  44. -FNC’s main competition (MSNBC) –

    That was long ago, blue. Stop living in the past. FNC’s main competition now appears to be the broadcast network news bureaus.

  45. – We all knew the complaints boiled down to “I don’t like Republicans, —

    And the ‘complaints’ aren’t all that artful, around here. ‘Hypocrisy’ is another word for ‘don’t hide it very well’.

  46. Which isn’t to say that Fox doesn’t exhibit bias. Just don’t b!tch about it while raving about MS, when most honest observers credit Fox with a balanced election-night. It doesn’t advance your cause.

  47. FNC did the best job PLAIN AND SIMPLE. Look at the numbers.

    COMCAST ARE YOU LOOKING AT THE NUMBERS?

    MSNBC was so far to the left I felt like I was in California.

  48. I just don’t get how the folks who have continually complained about FNC’s bias, can so quickly change their mind and fawn over MSNBC.

    Um… how about because Fox News claims to be “Fair and Balanced” (when they clearly aren’t), while MSNBC is not touting any kind of fairness or balance. They practically admit to being progressive/liberal. If Fox News can admit to being conservative, I’ll stop complaining about them. Until then, they are a joke. Plain and simple.

    COMCAST ARE YOU LOOKING AT THE NUMBERS?

    If anything, Comcast taking over MSNBC will improve their numbers with their current liberal lineup because they will reach more viewers, whereas right now only half of the country of cable news watchers even know who MSNBC is. Olbermann, himself, has admitted that the new ownership wants to make them more liberal. So, don’t count your chickens before they hatch.

    If you think MSNBC becoming more conservative is going to improve their ratings… you’re crazy, because that was an experiment that failed years earlier with the likes of Tucker Carlson, Monica Crowley, et al, having shows on the network. That was a failure, and the current lineup is not. It’s clearly not as good as Fox, but nothing close to the failure that was. If Comcast goes down that road, expect them to lose major revenue.

  49. imnotblue Says:

    Al Says:
    November 3, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    Ha!

    laura l Says:
    November 3, 2010 at 9:13 pm

    Precisely.

    ProgLib Says:
    November 4, 2010 at 1:16 am

    Um… how about because Fox News claims to be “Fair and Balanced” (when they clearly aren’t), while MSNBC is not touting any kind of fairness or balance.

    Now this is a common line… or has become a common line since some realized the direction MSNBC was going, so they’d need to change their ranting about bias to something more FNC focused. Of course, it’s the lamest complaint EVER! You realize if what you just said were true, you’re entire distain for FNC would be based on a SLOGAN!

    McDonalds: “I’m loving it!” – Well, I don’t love it, so they’re terrible!
    Nike: “Just do it.” – I don’t want to do anything, they’re ruining the country!
    Maxwell House: “Good to the last drop.” – My coffee was cold, that last drop was bad, they’re worse than Satan!

    These are the reactions I imagine you having while watching commercials… at least, the reactions you WOULD be having if your complaint against FNC’s slogan was true. But it’s not.

    They practically admit to being progressive/liberal.

    Unless you ask Keith Olbermann, who insists he’s a news guy, completely dissimilar to FNC, and presents straight news. And what part of “Lean Forward,” or “The Place for Politics,” says “Liberal Opinion Network?” Frankly, I’m surprised you forgave them for, “The Place for Politics,” when they would also show “Lockup” documentaries… that’s pretty inconsistent with the slogan, isn’t it?

    If Fox News can admit to being conservative, I’ll stop complaining about them. Until then, they are a joke. Plain and simple.

    That’s a lie, and you know it. But more importantly… we know it.

    If anything, Comcast taking over MSNBC will improve their numbers with their current liberal lineup because they will reach more viewers, whereas right now only half of the country of cable news watchers even know who MSNBC is.

    How do you figure? Isn’t MSNBC already on Comcast? How will this improve their reach?

    Olbermann, himself, has admitted that the new ownership wants to make them more liberal. So, don’t count your chickens before they hatch.

    “Admitted himself.” Wooo! Now there’s an unbiased source who doesn’t have a history of making things up to inflate his already overinflated ego. Oh… wait.

    If you think MSNBC becoming more conservative is going to improve their ratings… you’re crazy, because that was an experiment that failed years earlier with the likes of Tucker Carlson, Monica Crowley, et al, having shows on the network.

    No no… they were on the network well before MSNBC took a strong leap left. However, if MSNBC wants more of an audience, they’re going to have to be a little more fair towards Republicans, less nasty and mean-spirited all the time…and occasionally hire hosts who won’t throw tantrums about not having right-leaning gets on the network.

    Face it, MSNBC is an echo chamber… and like all echo chambers, after a short while, you get a headache. Right now, they’re an advocacy channel… not really even a news or opinion channel, but a “go support these guys” network. And there’s a relatively small audience for the perpetual “we’re better than everyone else because we believe XYZ” that they’ve become.

  50. – MSNBC is not touting any kind of fairness or balance —

    On my best day, and I have few, I could not have said it better myself.

  51. ProgLib has a point about the “fair & balanced” slogan. It’s bullsh!t, everybody knows it, and it’s borderline rude to keep saying it. Bret Baier says it every day with a smirk that says “well, not really, but screw ‘em”. FNC is a right-leaning news channel that carries a few hours of straight news a day. The format works for them and for their viewers, which is fine, but it is not “balanced”, and I’m tired of being told it is. “Right-leaning, unafraid, and if you don’t like it, go away” would be “fair”..

  52. Alright, I’m going to try a different approach in this whole “fair and balanced” debate… since it’s something that has been talked about over and over and over again.

    Tell me Joe (or Fritz, or Prog, or anyone else)… what does “fair and balanced” really look like? We’ve heard that FNC isn’t fair or balanced, so tell me what they’d have to do to make themselves such.

    Perhaps we just have different ideas of what makes something “fair and balanced.” Tell me what you think…

  53. “Fair and balanced” would be a dayside that follows Shep’s model, without the..whatever the hell it is..that they’re doing on America Live. And the opinion shows would have a left/right mix like MSNBC used to have with Tucker, Hardball, Countdown and Rita Cosby. Back then, MSNBC was the fair and balanced one. Neither Fox nor MSNBC do it now for the obvious reason (see: CNN’s ratings) that viewers won’t watch. Like I said, I’m not saying the model is “wrong”..just quit lying about it. America Live is not the straight news show it claims to be, and FNC is not a fair and balanced news channel.

  54. So to be “fair and balanced,” you believe they would need to have an equal portion of left-wing and right-wing hosted programs?

    And the dayside programming would need to be completely straight news?

  55. I don’t mind MSNBC pundits asking tough questions of Republicans. What I mind is the rudeness: When Eric Cantor answered a question, you could hear the panel laughing at him in the background. That’s just rude and unprofessional. No wonder FNC won election night, with more viewers than CNN and MSNBC combined.

  56. So to be “fair and balanced,” you believe they would need to have an equal portion of left-wing and right-wing hosted programs?

    And the dayside programming would need to be completely straight news?

    Yes. That’s the newspaper model. If you don’t want to follow it, don’t pretend you are.

  57. That’s just rude and unprofessional. No wonder FNC won election night, with more viewers than CNN and MSNBC combined.

    So, according to carol, MSNBC lost the election coverage because of it’s rudeness. Using this logic, that means the viewers either knew the anchors were going to be rude ahead of time and decided not to watch, or majority of viewers (or a good amount) were watching and just decided to change the channel because of what they saw. That’s brilliant.

    Did it ever occur to you that maybe, just maybe, MSNBC primarily attracts far-left liberals and progressives who were about to suffer a great deal of loss in the mid-term elections, so they decided not to tune in? Yeah, I didn’t think it would.

  58. lonestar77 Says:

    ^Only the wingnut left would choose to watch what MSNBC was offering on election night. I would imagine that the not-so-wingnut amongst you chose to watch serious discussion and serious analysis from serious people.

  59. These are the reactions I imagine you having while watching commercials… at least, the reactions you WOULD be having if your complaint against FNC’s slogan was true. But it’s not.

    It’s good to see that INB has resorted to comparing McDonalds, Nike and Maxwell House to Fox News. Last time I checked, a fast food restaraunt, an athletic clothing company, and a coffee brand isn’t comparable to a “news” organization. I’m glad you wasted your time to do all that, though.

    And what part of “Lean Forward,” or “The Place for Politics,” says “Liberal Opinion Network?”

    I meant they admit it as in they don’t make any secret to being liberal with their clearly liberal lineup of liberal hosts. How does that not spell it out for you? They slogan, however, doesn’t say anything one way or another. Maybe some would see “Lean Forward” as a progressive stance (I certainly do), but probably not people that aren’t familiar with politics.

    That’s a lie, and you know it. But more importantly… we know it.

    Based on what grounds? I accept MSNBC portraying themselves as liberal, and it would be nice if FNC did the same thing. They don’t and they probably never will. So, where is the lie?

    How do you figure? Isn’t MSNBC already on Comcast? How will this improve their reach?

    Because I know of many people who have stated that Comcast doesn’t offer MSNBC on its cable package unless you pay an exta fee… whereas, Fox and CNN are offered with a basic cable package.

    “Admitted himself.” Wooo! Now there’s an unbiased source who doesn’t have a history of making things up to inflate his already overinflated ego. Oh… wait.

    Why would he lie about what the network’s future owner is going to do? As if he’ll just say anything and get proven wrong in a few months?

  60. This not-necessarily-far-left (I hate the term “progressive” almost as much as “Tea Party”) liberal tuned out because of MSNBC’s approach Election Night, but you may have a point about “progressives”. Watching a bunch of liberals report a liberal shellacking doesn’t sound like Must See TV to me. I imagine a lot of them did something more productive..like getting royally plastered watching Cartoon Network.

  61. imnotblue Says:

    joeremi Says:
    November 4, 2010 at 12:14 pm

    Yes. That’s the newspaper model. If you don’t want to follow it, don’t pretend you are.

    Okay… but first off, who said they’re following the newspaper model… and secondly, when has the “newspaper model” ever worked for television?

    ProgLib Says:
    November 4, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    Using this logic, that means the viewers either knew the anchors were going to be rude ahead of time

    Well, people HAVE seen MSNBC before… this wasn’t KO’s first bit of rudeness.

    and decided not to watch, or majority of viewers (or a good amount) were watching and just decided to change the channel because of what they saw.

    Actually, that’s what people were saying on this site! They were watching MSNBC, but the rudeness and bias became too much so they left.

    That’s brilliant.

    I don’t understand your sarcasm. Do you think that people wouldn’t or don’t change the channel? Huh!?

    Did it ever occur to you that maybe, just maybe, MSNBC primarily attracts far-left liberals and progressives who were about to suffer a great deal of loss in the mid-term elections, so they decided not to tune in?

    So you believe it’s “sore loser syndrome,” and the left only cares when they’re winning? Wow… how is that a better scenario?!

    ProgLib Says:
    November 4, 2010 at 5:28 pm

    Last time I checked, a fast food restaraunt, an athletic clothing company, and a coffee brand isn’t comparable to a “news” organization.

    If you complain about the “slogan,” then you complain about all slogans… simple as that.

    But I notice that you put “news” in quotes. This suggest to me that it’s NOT the slogan, as quoting “news” wouldn’t really have anything to do with that, would it?

    Do you put “news” in quotes when talking about MSNBC? I don’t recall seeing that from you. I wonder why? Is it because you forgot? Or is it perhaps that you see what they do as “news” because you agree with them politically, and since you disagree with FNC, they get quoted? Hmm… the sounds much more like it, doesn’t it? And pretty much what I said you believe from the get go.

    The slogan stuff is just a farce… your “quoting” demonstrates.

    I meant they admit it as in they don’t make any secret to being liberal with their clearly liberal lineup of liberal hosts.

    Except for KO, who has often said the exact opposite.

    Maybe some would see “Lean Forward” as a progressive stance (I certainly do), but probably not people that aren’t familiar with politics.

    I didn’t realize that leaning, or “forward” had anything to do with liberalism. Perhaps that’s why so few seem to “get it,” when it comes to their slogan.

    I accept MSNBC portraying themselves as liberal, and it would be nice if FNC did the same thing. They don’t and they probably never will. So, where is the lie?

    The lie is that unless FNC closes up shop tomorrow, you won’t stop complaining about them. Remember the “news” quoting before… again, your words disprove yourself.

    Because I know of many people who have stated that Comcast doesn’t offer MSNBC on its cable package unless you pay an exta fee…

    Are you sure that’s Comcast… I could have sworn that was TimeWarner and FIOS.

    Why would he lie about what the network’s future owner is going to do? As if he’ll just say anything and get proven wrong in a few months?

    Because he’s a narcissist and says things just to say things. He’s been caught making stuff up, and claiming he “never said things” that he without a doubt did. Additionally, he likes to make himself sound more important than he really is. That’s why he always interjects himself into stories about celebrities dying… suddenly there he is, telling everyone how great the recently deceased thought he was.

    Right and wrong don’t matter to someone who always believes their right.

  62. Okay… but first off, who said they’re following the newspaper model… and secondly, when has the “newspaper model” ever worked for television?

    My point is simple. If they’re not going to do a newspaper-style balance on their news network, they shouldn’t use a slogan that says they are. I totally agree that that model doesn’t get ratings; I just want them to use an honest slogan that reflects the one they use. Fox News is not fair and balanced. It’s mostly right-leaning, with a smattering of straight news. Everybody knows that, the majority like it, so why lie about it?

  63. I didn’t realize that leaning, or “forward” had anything to do with liberalism. Perhaps that’s why so few seem to “get it,” when it comes to their slogan.

    Yes, I think it implies an ideological POV. Most people know that MSNBC leans left. The slogan has “lean” in it, which connotes a direction, and “forward” is pretty obvious code for “progressive”. It’s the one thing I like about the stupid phrase: it honestly identifies what they’re doing at MSNBC, which relates to my previous comment.

  64. Actually, that’s what people were saying on this site! They were watching MSNBC, but the rudeness and bias became too much so they left.

    I didn’t realize that ICN (as much as I enjoy being on here) spoke for most of the country’s cable news viewing habits. Thanks for that great reminder, INB. You never fail at making something out of nothing.

    I don’t understand your sarcasm. Do you think that people wouldn’t or don’t change the channel? Huh!?

    Exactly… you don’t understand sarcasm, period. And, yes, obviously people could have been changing the channel while watching. That’s what the remote is for… but they don’t speak for EVERYBODY in the country who was watching.

    So you believe it’s “sore loser syndrome,” and the left only cares when they’re winning? Wow… how is that a better scenario?!

    Well, as the Bush presidency was winding down and came to an end, Fox’s viewership started to go down a little bit, while MSNBC’s had started to rise, because obviously, supporters of Bush were turned off and liberals were fired up about a new fresh face in Obama. Now, the Republicans are back, all charged up and happy with the tea party taking over, so they will tune into Fox more (just like the Progressives went to MSNBC during 2008).

    If you complain about the “slogan,” then you complain about all slogans… simple as that.

    I don’t need you to tell me what the rules are regarding slogans. We’re talking about FNC’s slogan, not Maxwell House’s. PERIOD… so get that through your head.

    But I notice that you put “news” in quotes. This suggest to me that it’s NOT the slogan, as quoting “news” wouldn’t really have anything to do with that, would it?

    There you go getting off topic and over analyzing again, just like typical wing nuts like you do.

    Do you put “news” in quotes when talking about MSNBC?

    No, because they have an actual news team that reports NEWS, such as: Savannah Guthrie, Chuck Todd, Chris Jansing, Richard Lui, etc., including various correspondents like John Yang, Tom Costello, Luke Russert, Mike Viqueira, as well. All of FNC’s “straight news” people are ideological hacks… I just heard Bill Hemmer and Martha Macallum, both supposed straight news anchors, on Kilmeade’s radio show complaining about the election in CA and why Jerry Brown was elected.

    I didn’t realize that leaning, or “forward” had anything to do with liberalism. Perhaps that’s why so few seem to “get it,” when it comes to their slogan.

    As usual, you don’t get a lot of things, INB. Maybe you should try and THINK more. I don’t know who else you’re speaking for, but just because you and your far-right buddies can’t comprehend the meaning of a slogan doesn’t mean the rest of the country can’t.

    Remember the “news” quoting before… again, your words disprove yourself.

    Whether Fox News is a real “news” network or not has nothing to do with them using a slogan that says “fair and balanced”. The point, which you choose to divert and deflect, is that they push this slogan out there trying to get their viewers to believe something that isn’t true (why do you think they repeat it so much?), and people like you continue to believe it when there is nothing that shows them being “fair and balanced”. It’s all a charade that has been used brilliantly for years.

    Are you sure that’s Comcast… I could have sworn that was TimeWarner and FIOS.

    I was hearing it from all of those. FIOS recently put MSNBC on its package, so that hasn’t been an issue I’ve heard recently, But I still hear about it regarding Comcast.

    Because he’s a narcissist and says things just to say things. He’s been caught making stuff up, and claiming he “never said things” that he without a doubt did. Additionally, he likes to make himself sound more important than he really is.

    Your petty complaining in no way explains why he points out that Comcast wants to make the network more liberal. He’s not even injecting himself into this news of Comcast keeping them liberal… he just relayed what he was told. It’s not like he’s talking about his bosses loving him or that they are going to do all kinds of amazing things. All he said is they are going to be more liberal. Period. End of story.

    By the way, I love how you profess Olbermann to be “a narcissist and saying things just to say things.” You know who also does that? Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, etc. They all talk out of both sides of their mouths, regardless of ideology. They are egotistical media figures, just like politicians are corrupt and greedy. Stop painting Olbermann as the lone wolf villain in cable news. That’s J$’s job… you don’t need to be his patsy for him.

  65. [...] days ago I wrote the following concerning MSNBC not using journalists for its election night coverage… Until [...]

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