Cable News Networks 'Grant' Manning Verdict A Whole Five Minutes Of Coverage

from the pardon-the-interruption...-here's-more-Weiner dept

Bradley Manning's verdict was delivered yesterday but if you were expecting to see any coverage on the 24-hour news networks, there's a good chance you missed it, possibly by leaving the room momentarily, channel surfing, or enjoying one of the many hundreds of blinks that provide your eyes with much-needed lubrication.

According to Buzzfeed's stopwatch, the average time the major cable news networks spent on covering the Manning verdict was about 5 minutes. MSNBC topped the charts with 5 minutes and 54 seconds of Manning verdict coverage before moving on to more pressing issues (Weiner sexting presumably, if the pre-roll splash is any indication).

Can't say I blame them. There's no exciting angle to pursue, being completely devoid of partisan wrangling, sexting, royal births, or any other populist "hook." Instead, it's just a run-of-the-mill example of an embarrassed government lashing out at someone who hung a bit of its dirty laundry out to dry.

In general, these sorts of stories are only provided will-this-do minimal coverage by mainstream media outlets, many of which have become satisfied with lending credibility to administration talking points or presenting a garish caricature of the "opposing viewpoint." These roles rotate as needed, depending on the administration's party affiliation.

Manning exposed a lot of wrongdoing and questionable behavior, something that should have forced our government and military-industrial complex to take a long hard look at themselves. Instead, the administration has made every effort to shoot the messenger -- any messenger.

But screw 'em. It's not as if those seeking better coverage of events like these don't have hundreds or thousands of other sources to choose from, most of which don't feel compelled to play softball in order to protect their access to the Beltway. The downside is that those seeking new voices will be deterred by the mainstream media, which frequently paints the internet as a the world's largest Mom's basement, filled with bathrobe-wearing bloggers spouting off conspiracy theories and Tweeted banalities, bereft of tact and deference.

I'd argue that the mainstream media is the world's largest Old Boy Network, filled with shiny vacuous objects spouting off round-the-clock banalities and regurgitated talking points, bereft of skepticism or a functioning conscience.

But, you know, maybe that's just me.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 4:37am

    Because they cannot shine a light on events which expose their "newsworthiness" as the sham it is.

     

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  2.  
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    The Bouncy One, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 4:45am

    I bet that will change tomorrrow...

    ...when they have a ludicrously large number of years he'll be locked up for which the government will want them to publicise far and wide as a deterrent to other whistleblowers.

     

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  3.  
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    The Real Michael, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 4:46am

    What a shock. The state-run, corporate fed mainstream media doing the bidding of the establishment.

    Gotta keep all those low information viewers ignorant and uneducated.

     

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  4.  
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    vegetaman (profile), Jul 31st, 2013 @ 4:46am

    Well of course. Real news with available facts isn't as interesting to them as it is to free associate about something where they have 2 minutes worth of facts (that they still get wrong) and use it to fill 8 hours of television.

     

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  5.  
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    Vidiot (profile), Jul 31st, 2013 @ 4:50am

    Show me the ratings

    "I'd argue that the mainstream media is the world's largest Old Boy Network..."

    You give them too much credit... accommodating your homies requires thought, and even small amounts of effort. No thought or effort here; this is about superficiality in service to ratings -- choose the lurid stories that grab viewers' eyeballs, and wait for ad revenues to roll in. We relinquish long-form, thoughtful content to our noncommercial networks.

     

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  6.  
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    FM Hilton, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 4:56am

    Shoot the messenger and their accomplices

    The major media outlets in this country are indirectly controlled by the government, with their owners always accommodating the powers that be.

    They like to keep their masters happy, and by not covering certain 'unpleasant' stories, they do it.

    It's not as if it's news, you know.

    The entertainment value is nil in this story, so it gets no coverage, and no air time.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 5:04am

    Re: Shoot the messenger and their accomplices

    No -

    The major media outlets in this country are directly controlled by the elite ruling class, one percent, billionaires, whatever.

    And they want to control you.

     

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  8.  
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    Ninja (profile), Jul 31st, 2013 @ 5:07am

    You'd be amazed at what can be found at the mom's basement ;)

    I didn't expect much from the mainstream media either. Even regarding Snowden they are fiercely focusing on the man instead of the facts.

    To spread awareness. This is mom's basement duty.

     

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  9. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 5:21am

    It was the second story on network news. But no big surprise. It was an anti-climatic story of a traitor with a predictable ending. When he gets his 30 years, the media will probably give that more air time. Everyone loves just desserts.

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 5:25am

    My theory...

    This is one of the reasons that the Zimmerman trial and got the live feed treatment with the talking heads tirelessly pouring over every gory detail. This was done purposely to pull the collective attention of the general public away from the issues raised by the Manning trial and the Snowden leaks. It's the classic "look at the monkey" strategy. At one time the media stood as the ultimate check on government power. However, once the power of the mainstream media became consolidated in the hands of corporate powerhouses with the ability to use their wealth to directly influence government for their own personal gain, the mainstream media no longer effectively serves this purpose.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 5:29am

    Re: Shoot the messenger and their accomplices

    You have that backwards. The mainstream media isn't controlled by the government. The government is controlled by the corporate entities that own the mainstream media. That is the real problem here.

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 5:37am

    Re:

    traitor?
    just?

    no bias here folks, move along

     

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  13. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    DS, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 5:43am

    Don't complain. The more people hear about what Manning released, and how it was misused, the more he sounds like a total asshole. Snowden released specific information regarding a specific program for a specific reason. Manning just dumped everything he could find without regard to the contents or the benefit to the public. He was just a brat lashing out.

     

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  14.  
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    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Jul 31st, 2013 @ 6:06am

    Re:

    Keep on spinning. Maybe someone will someday believe you.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
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    Titania Bonham-Smythe (profile), Jul 31st, 2013 @ 6:12am

    Typo

    "...frequently paints the internet as a the world's..."

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 6:29am

    Re:

    I imagine that his thoughts were his is sick somone's got to see this and so he passed on the information.

    Do you think we, the public, would have been better served if he only released a few shocking videos and then got fired before he could work through the cables?

     

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  17.  
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    Percius Grammaticus, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 6:32am

    Re:

    To enjoy a lovely chocolate dessert
    I hope you will judge to be my desert

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 6:39am

    It's not a basement, it's a command center!

     

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  19.  
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    art guerrilla (profile), Jul 31st, 2013 @ 7:03am

    Re: Show me the ratings

    oh, but they *could* have turned this into a media circus, IF THEY WERE SO INCLINED...
    they can take ANY non-story and puff it up to ridiculous heights, so they *could* have turned this HUGE story into a ratings chase, IF THEY WERE SO INCLINED...

    but the cowardly pukes know what Empire wants, THAT is why they won't go there...

    art guerrilla
    aka ann archy
    eof

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 7:04am

    Re: My theory...

    Military trials are never televised. Try again.

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 7:15am

    Re: Re:

    Hard to refute. Manning indiscriminately released 700,000+ items. No way he could evaluate what he was releasing, much less fathom the implications. Sorry, but DS has this one right.

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 7:41am

    Re: Re: My theory...

    I said nothing about televising the Manning trial. Civilian trials are often covered but not so often televised either. My point was not that they didn't televise the Manning trial, but not only did they barely cover it, they pushed up the sensationalism of the coverage of a different trial to spark divisiveness in the population centered around a completely different event purposely to draw attention away from what they didn't want people to be talking about. Notice that there was virtually NO coverage of ANY of the Restore the Fourth protests but you cannot go a day without hearing continuing coverage of the protests over the Zimmerman verdict. Not that the issues raised by the Zimmerman trial aren't important. They are. However, so are the these issues. Furthermore, had the Zimmerman case been covered like most similar cases that have occurred, these protests would likely not be occurring or at least in as broad of a sense as they are. Where was the live feed coverage of the trial of Lawrence Russell Brewer? The mainstream media is pouring fuel on the fire of the racial divide that exists within the country to protect their established power structure regardless of nobleness of the cause.

     

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  23.  
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    Dogbreath, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 8:54am

    If only they could get their news anchors to dress the part...

    then their collective ratings would get the boost they "think" they deserve.

    MSNBC topped the charts with 5 minutes and 54 seconds of Manning verdict coverage before moving on to more pressing issues (Weiner sexting presumably, if the pre-roll splash is any indication).

    Made me think of this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cfy55qBVHNU


    The major news organizations of yesteryear have become the video tabloids of today, solely in search of one thing: ratings.

    Oh, how the mighty have fallen...

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 8:55am

    Re: Re: Shoot the messenger and their accomplices

    That's just about true.

    Today 90% of the media is owned by just 5 giant corporations.

    10 years ago 90% of the media was owned by 10 giant corporations.

    And 50 years ago, 90% of the media was owned by 50 different corporations.

    That's why more and more lately the media is largely the same, because it's owned by fewer and fewer people, which means less and less diversity.

     

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  25.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jul 31st, 2013 @ 10:17am

    Re:

    Who's the traitor?

    Or are you talking about Manning, who tried to help the American public?

     

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  26. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 10:58am

    Re: Re: Re: My theory...

    It should be obvious that the vast majority of the nation DOESN'T GIVE A SHIT. Please forgive the rest of the world for not placing your issue at the top of their list. You'll have to content yourself with pissing and moaning into the Techdirt echo chamber.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 11:04am

    I don't even turn on the TV to hear the news anymore. It's all government propaganda news that I find boring anyways.

    Instead, I go strait to the real news sources, the internet. Reuters is a good one, as is wired.com, and of course techdirt.com :)

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 31st, 2013 @ 11:51am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: My theory...

    It's not that people don't give a shit. It's that they don't really know. The vast majority of the nation has been asleep because of these sorts of tactics. Granted the information is out there and they could go and find it if they were motivated to do so. However, they have been spoon fed information by the corporations in control for so long that most don't see the manipulation happening right under their noses. That is my point exactly.

     

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  29.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Jul 31st, 2013 @ 12:06pm

    Re:

    Correct. Corporate news, and especially the television variety, is really anti-news: when you are exposed to it, you are left knowing less about the subject than before.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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