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.

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Comments on “Cable News Networks 'Grant' Manning Verdict A Whole Five Minutes Of Coverage”

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Vidiot (profile) says:

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.

art guerrilla (profile) says:

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

FM Hilton (profile) says:

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.

Anonymous Coward says:

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.

Anonymous Coward says:

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.

Anonymous Coward says:

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.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 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.

DS says:

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.

Dogbreath says:

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:

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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