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Americans use Internet to go beyond political sound bites

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by WoodysGirl, Jun 15, 2008.

  1. WoodysGirl

    WoodysGirl Everything is everything... Staff Member

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    By ANICK JESDANUN, AP Internet Writer
    2 hours, 1 minute ago

    NEW YORK - Americans dissatisfied with political sound bites are turning to the Internet for a more complete picture, a new study finds.


    In a report Sunday, the Pew Internet and American Life Project said that nearly 30 percent of adults have used the Internet to read or watch unfiltered campaign material — footage of debates, position papers, announcements and transcripts of speeches.

    "They want to see the full-blown campaign event. They want to read the speech from beginning to end," said Lee Rainie, director of the Pew group. "It's a push back from the sound-bite culture."

    Google Inc.'s YouTube and other video sites have become more popular. Thirty-five percent of adults have watched a political video online during the primary season, compared with 13 percent during the entire 2004 presidential race.

    The study also found that 10 percent of adults have used online hangouts like Facebook and News Corp.'s ******* for political activity, whether it's to add a campaign as a friend on their personal profile pages, discover a friend's political interests or join an online political group.

    Of course, video and social networking have grown in general since the last presidential election.

    "It is mirroring the broader trends that we see online," Rainie said.

    Pew also found online fundraising is up — 6 percent of adults have contributed to a campaign using the Internet, compared with 2 percent in 2004.

    The Internet has allowed campaigns to reach first-time donors without the expense of direct mail or phone calls. Democrat Barack Obama has been particularly adept at generating small donations from a vast number of Internet users to become the fundraising leader among all the presidential candidates.

    Pew found that among Internet users, Obama supporters were about twice as likely as backers of Democratic rival Hillary Rodham Clinton and Republican John McCain to have made a campaign contribution online.

    All told, 46 percent of Americans have used the Internet or cell phone text messaging for some political activity.

    Yet they have mixed views about the Internet in politics. Sixty percent of Internet users fear that misinformation and propaganda are widespread online and that too many other voters are trusting that information. And only 28 percent believe the Internet helps them feel more personally connected to the candidate they support.

    The telephone study of 2,251 adults, including 1,553 Internet users, was conducted April 8 to May 11 and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.
  2. Cajuncowboy

    Cajuncowboy Preacher From The Black Lagoon

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    Great. The internet is a wonderful place to find the truth.

    Honestly though, I couldn't tell you where to find 100% truth on this campaign.
  3. Heisenberg

    Heisenberg Pow! Pow! Zone Supporter

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    It definitely can be a useful tool to get further information, but you just have to be real careful. Like you said, I'm not sure where you could go to find 100% truth all the time.
  4. Cajuncowboy

    Cajuncowboy Preacher From The Black Lagoon

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    You're right. It can be useful. But it can be a festering cesspool of misinformation. I guess the only source of 100% truth would be the CZ! :D
  5. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    Dan Rather Slams Corporate News at National Conference for Media Reform ~ Date: June 8, 2008

    MINNEAPOLIS -- On Saturday, former CBS News anchor Dan Rather gave a blistering critique of corporate news at the National Conference for Media Reform hosted by Free Press -- the national, nonpartisan media reform group.


    I could continue for hours, cataloging journalistic sins of which I know you are all too aware. But, as the time grows late, let me say that almost all of these failings come down to this: In the current model of corporate news ownership, the incentive to produce good and valuable news is simply not there.

    Good news, quality news of integrity, requires resources and it requires talent. These things are expensive, these things eat away at the bottom line.

    Years ago, in the eighties and the nineties, when the implications of these cost-trimming measures were becoming impossible to ignore, and the quality of the news was clearly threatened, I spoke out against this cutting of news operations to the bone and beyond. Even then, though, I couldn't have imagined that the cost-cutting imperatives would go as far as they have today -- deep into the marrow of what was once considered a public trust.

    But since the financial resources always seem to be available for entertainment, promotion, and -- last but not least -- for lobbying... perhaps there is an even more important reason why the incentive to produce quality news is absent, and that is: quality news of integrity, by its very nature, is sure to rock the boat now and then. Good, responsible news worthy of its Constitutional protections will, in that famous phrase, afflict the powerful and comfort the afflicted.

    And that, when one feels the need to deliver shareholder value above all, means that good news... may not always mean good business -- or so goes the fear, a fear that filters down into just about every big newsroom in this country.

    Now, I have spent my entire life in for-profit news, and I happen to think that it does not have to be this way. I have worked for news owners who, while they may have regarded their news divisions as an occasional irritant, chose to turn that irritant into a pearl of public trust. But today, sadly, it seems that the conglomerates that have control over some of the biggest pieces of this public trust would just as soon spit that irritant out.

    So what does this mean for us tonight, and what is to be done?

    It means that we need to be on the alert for where, when, and how our news media bows to undue government influence. And you need to let news organizations know, in no uncertain terms, that you won't stand for it... that you, as news consumers, are capable of exerting pressure of your own.

    It means that we need to continue to let our government know that, when it comes to media consolidation, enough is enough. Too few voices are dominating, homogenizing, and marginalizing the news. We need to demand that the American people get something in exchange for the use of airwaves that belong, after all, to the people.

    It means that we need to ensure that the Internet, where free speech reigns and where journalism does not have to pass through a corporate filter... remains free.

    We need to say, loud and clear, that we don't want big corporations enjoying preferred access to -- or government acting as the gatekeeper for -- this unique platform for independent journalism.

    And it means that we need to hold the government to its mandate to protect the freedom of the press, including independent and non-commercial news media.

    The stakes could not possibly be higher. Scott McClellan's book serves as a reminder, and the current election season, not to mention the gathering clouds of conflict with Iran, will both serve as tests of whether lessons have truly been learned from past experience. Ensuring that a free press remains free will require vigilance, and it will require work.

    Please, take tonight's energy and inspiration home with you. Take it back to your desks and your workplaces, to your colleagues and your fellow citizens. magnify it, multiply it, and spread it. Make it viral. Make it something that cannot be ignored -- not by the powers in Washington, not by the owners and executives of media companies.

    Write these people. Call them. Send them the message that you know your rights, you know that you are entitled to news media as diverse and varied as the American people... and that you deserve a press that provides the raw material of democracy, the good information that Americans need to be full participants in our government of, by, and for the people. T

    here is energy here, that can be equal to that task, but this energy must be maintained... if the press -- if democracy -- is to be preserved.

    Thank you very much, and good night.

  6. Cajuncowboy

    Cajuncowboy Preacher From The Black Lagoon

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    Wow! The whole Pot/Kettle thingy really applies here.
  7. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    How so, Cajun? Is this a reference to his CBS 2000 Presidential election night coverage?

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