KUCHARUK: “Media” versus journalism and more

It has taken me a while to wrap my head around the fact that ‘media’ does not mean journalism. Media is simply a means of broadcasting or communicating a message – not necessarily the truth.

Twenty years ago, if one were to reference the media, we would assume that it was the dissemination of news. Someone with a media badge would be sent to cover the event as it was happening and then share that information with their audience. Now we have right wing media outlets and left-wing media outlets, both with an agenda to push to viewers/listeners/readers. Heck, blogging and podcasting can be referred to as media but that doesn’t make what they write or say truthful or based on fact.

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Media does not necessarily equate to journalism. At this moment you are reading an opinion piece, not something written by a journalist. I didn’t go to school and learn about ethics or sources – I simply share my opinion once a week. Should you believe what I say? I would hope that my column sparks conversation, but I know that not everyone agrees with everything I write and again I assert that I am not a journalist.

As an opinion columnist, I could opine on so many crazy things that are happening in the world and I could write it from the perspective of someone extremely conservative leaning or someone extremely liberal leaning. Again, I am not a journalist bound by rules of convention.

When we get fooled into thinking that opinion columnists are bipartisan in thinking and only speak THE truth, we get sucked into a world where we believe everything we read.

Read an opinion column for enjoyment, read it for a thoughtful change in perspective, but take it with a grain of salt. If a column spurs you to do some further investigating of a subject – that’s great. 

If a column makes you laugh because it is so ridiculous – that’s great too! Just remember, it is just an opinion and we are all allowed to have one.

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