Press Bias Like A Hole In The Head

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There are conscientious, serious-minded people, who think and look with a critical eye over what is put before them. And then there are Tin-Foil Hatted Crazies who make X-Files fans sound reasonable.

Opera is a great browser - backed by a great company that knows better than to get stuck in the muck from which you never fully extricate yourself. Opera supporters, like myself, do not need this kind of rabid rumour-mongering - supposedly on our behalf.

Bias is an accusation that has become debased by usage - and so often now it has become inaccurate as a description of the partisan hackery that can occur. The only reason people keep jumping up and down is because they fail to understand something fundamental about narrative, about writing. Any narrative, any story, by the nature of its construction, consciously or not, is laced with the context and person through which it is written. There is no absence of "bias" - just a failure to acknowledge the considered conclusion of your deliberation and opinion.

The media can write whatever they want - that's what they're there for. Calling all negative press "bad" and all positive press "good" is like saying chickens have too many feathers. I'm not saying the AP article was particularly well written or particularly honestly presented in any considered way - it is neither - but rending your garments about the tonnage of bad writing anywhere is about as useful as resisting the Borg (and I don't mean the cuddly Microsoft kind).

As for the blazingly astute insight that news gathering organisations have vested interests (tell me more of this "filthy lucre" you speak of) - if you want to have the psychological insight of a three-year-old, that's fine, just stay away from the man with the funny nose.

You might as well say the press have a bias against murderers and litterbugs.

It is only under protest that I even link to trash - and then only via Dan - though personally I think he should know better than to reprint tripe.

If you want something related (dirty, dirty, John), try the last teacup.


Louis says I post trash. I disagree. Dana Blankhorn's commentaries are well respected in the IT industry based on his over two decades of experience covering the field. I posted his comments because they are on point about how the press treats Opera, Firefox, and all the other browser news.

I'm sorry Dan, that all you got from my post is that I think you "post trash" - that would never be my intention or meaning. As far as I'm concerned, your journal deals with Opera's presence in the news, good, bad and ugly - so you were simply fulfilling your journal's brief.

If, as you say, Dana Blankhorn is "respected" in the IT industry, that article was a poor example of it - something I can't make clearer than I have in my post above.

I can understand why that kind of commentary is so attractive, both to write and to read, since I've done both myself; but it's certainly not to be encouraged. As an Opera supporter, I'd like nothing better to believe that there is a huge media conspiracy afoot - but the greater likelihood is that Opera simply isn't doing as well as it should do for how good a browser it is.

Claiming "they're out to get us" is a very paltry excuse - and true or not, should not distract us from the more important work of being sensible. Sensible people, given a level playing field, would choose the best browser - when you make it "us against them", you're simply muddying the waters.

So again, if you think I was "dissing" you (or something trendy like that), I'm sorry - I was just saying that given your obvious intelligence and conscientiousness, that that particular article wasn't the most obvious candidate (IMO) for inclusion. And as I made clear, I'd much rather link to you than to the original.

But really it's all part of my frustration that Opera supporters (myself included) can too often be uncritical in their support for people who write positive things about Opera - liking Opera does not absolve you of the business of being a rational intelligent person. When people print "positive trash" - that's all it is - positive, but trash.

As you say Louis I post the good, bad, or ugly in terms of press coverage of Opera. As you know the Opera Journal is a poor platform for commetary. I'm hoping that when Opera revamps their website and community pages this Fall that it will allow more opportunities for dialog there. I'm not shy about going public with critical comments when they are deserved. See this URL

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This page contains a single entry by subtitles published on July 19, 2005 9:23 AM.

Gone Fishin' was the previous entry in this blog.

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