story is a big part of the problem. There's no doubt about that. But there is another, not so obvious one. Let me cover the news aspect first though, since we're already on that topic. Here's the real question. The one that gets to the heart of this thread as it pertains to the subject:
Does the news intentionally censor the truth to prevent users from hearing it, or does it candor to its target demographic?
I'm of the mindset that the answer is undoubtedly both. Anybody can see the first half of that question in action, but the second half is a little more subtle.
I had the fortune of working as a photographer for my local newspaper shortly after high school, and one of the coolest parts of the job, was that I got to write a "by-line". For those of you unfamiliar, a by-line is a one liner that ties the photograph to the main article, as well as, gives the photographer credit for the photo. It's was so cool, because the combination of the photography mixed with the by-line, gave me a chance to expose a little bit of my artistic side. Getting to the point though, one day, just before the dailies were about to be sent to the printer, a journalist was cropping one of my photos into his story. Nothing unusual there, it happened every day. But, on this day, when he got to my by-line, he started editing it. I was completely livid. I immediately stopped him, and asked, "What are you doing? What's the problem with this?"
His reply was that there were, and I quote, "too many big words in it". He then went on to say something along the lines of, "When you write something to be printed here, you have to keep your language at a sixth grade level. It's best to assume that your target audience, the people reading the paper, are either twelve, or suffer from mild mental retardation." After that day I took a much more serious look at the way the articles themselves had been constructed. And believe me, it's all there, in its ugly, you're too stupid to understand it, glory. Just take a look for yourself.
But, since we're on the subject of media in general, let's not forget things like talk shows. Ever wondered just how many commercials you can fit into a half hour of programming? You think they're only trying to get your money during those short little two minute intermissions? Then you aren't paying attention to what's being said. If you keep your ears and eyes open, you'll hear at least one name brand product being, at the very least, a minor part of the conversation, if not the main focal point of the interview. They intentionally write sketches on television shows to showcase a product that the advertising partners produce. The same is true of the radio. Just pay attention. I've got a local radio show that I hear three days out of every week in which they devote at least 15 minutes to talking about how much they love their special <INSERT BRAND-NAME HERE> beds. Beds that they openly admit were given to them by the company that made them. It has nothing to do with music. It has nothing to do with the "cause" they've "devoted" their radio show to. They're fucking beds! It's so in your face bold, that even a mildly mentally retarded sixth grader would still be able to tell it was just a freaking infomercial set to music.
But I digress, because this happens all the time. So much so, that we've just desensitized ourselves to it, and given it the cute little monikers, "household name" or "product placement". But the truth is, that it's so frequent, it's more closely related to subliminal advertising.