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Ethos vs. Blogos (the Jeff Gannon story)

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Plaid Adder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 02:58 PM
Original message
Ethos vs. Blogos (the Jeff Gannon story)
I just read the Jeff Gannon thing at Americablog. Shudder.

I was thinking about this whole MSM vs. blogosphere thing, because I was also checking out the NYT piece about bloggers as "trophy hunters" (they bagged Rather, we bagged Gannon...hm, who's winning this competition?). As someone on that thread pointed out, the NYT and the rest of the MSM are failing to grasp an important point, which is that the blogosphere is filling the void they have left open by refusing to investigate and follow up on the many, many crimes and scandals produced by this administration.

As I was reading the Americablog thing, it occurred to me that one mechanism at work here is the tradeoff between ethos and logos. For those of you whose memories of rhetoric and comp are mercifully dim, the three basic modes of rhetorical appeal are ethos, pathos, and logos. Pathos is the appeal to emotion, logos is the appeal to reason, and ethos is the appeal based on trust. In other words, in order to get someone to buy your argument, ideally you want it to be factually accurate and logically coherent (logos), emotionally powerful (pathos) and articulated by someone credible (ethos). However, if your argument is very long on one, it can afford to be short on one or two of the others. For instance, if you pour on enough pathos, nobody will notice that your logos is crap. THe right wing is extremely good at that kind of argument, for instance.

Pathos and logos are easy enough to get a handle on. Ethos is a little trickier. Getting your reader to trust you can be as simple as proofreading (if your spelling and grammar are crap, this may lead to your reader assuming that your reasoning is also crap) but it also depends on more complicated factors like style, reputation, and celebrity.

Increasingly, in our media culture, "ethos" is really about branding. People have identified certain news outlets as trustworthy and continue to trust them whether or not their reporting actually validates that trust. The New York Times may have published factitious stories by a reporter who made shit up, and they may have functioned as a conduit for Chalabi's fantasies about WMD, but they are the New York Times, and they're the paper of record, dammit, so they don't have to be accurate. Ditto for CNN. NPR's long-established credentials as an in-depth, liberal-leaning news outlet mean that it is retaining its listeners long after its ideological center has shifted and its practices have gone into decline. Fox, because it's newer, and because its ideological bias has been obvious from the beginning, doesn't have much ethos amongst the center-left crowd, but for the same reasons, for a right-wing audience, it's got doubleplus good ethos. The branding of the American MSM has been so successful that even perfectly legitimate international media outlets are essentially invisible to most Americans, because they are not attached to a familiar brand.

But here's the problem: because these MSM outlets are used to skating by on ethos and pathos, they are really falling down on the job when it comes to logos. They already have the public trust, and they are very good at manipulating emotion (especially broadcast journalism). These things are now easy for them. Logical argument based on factual evidence is difficult--and more important, it's difficult to sell, because it takes longer for people to process. So that's really not what they're into any more.

In the blogosphere, where new blogs are being born every day and nobody knows who's paying for these people or where they come from, most everyone is starting from zero when it comes to ethos. Certain blogs are now well-known enough to be 'branded,' but most of them aren't. You're not going to believe a story just because you found it on a blog *unless* it comes attached to hard evidence. That's why that Americablog spends more time dumping all the evidence than it does on analysis (or, as he admits up front, proofreading)--because he knows that unless he comes across with evidence, nobody is going to buy it. If he were Wolf Blitzer, he wouldn't have to care; but since he's not, he does.

And that's why the blogosphere is taking over. Bloggers HAVE to use evidence if they want to be credible. Now, if you're partisan enough, you will be satisfied with very little evidence, and that goes for both sides of the ideological divide. But for most everyone in the middle, what makes a blog story credible is the quality of the research. Blogs can't play "some people say" with the same success that the cable news networks have because they have to give their readers a reason to trust them, whereas for the cable news folks, it's good enough that they're on TV. For some reason, getting on TV seems to really boost your ethos, at least for a sizeable chunk of the American viewing population.

Ah well. It'll be interesting to see how this all sorts out.

C ya,

The Plaid Adder
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BlueEyedSon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:01 PM
Response to Original message
1. Woo hooo! Recommended! nt
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northernsoul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:06 PM
Response to Original message
2. this is why I never miss a Plaid Adder post
right on the money!
again!
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ewagner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:06 PM
Response to Original message
3. As usual
Truth stinging like a potent venom from the Plaid Adder!!

recommended.......

and thanks...
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Az Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:10 PM
Response to Original message
4. MSM has simply atrophied
As their drive is based not on the qudos for doing a good job of reporting the uncomfortable truth. It has shifted to whatever keeps the audience's attention. And that is entirely based on the leveraging of their ethos to peddle their pathos. Logos need not apply.

Particularly as the media shifted into the hyperconnected sound bite style of reporting. Any story that cannot be distilled down to a 30 second sound bite falls to the side. Nuance and thought are eradicated in this format. Anything that takes time to consider cannot fit into a formated segment.

Of course over time as the focus becomes more on the selling and marketting of the news the focus of aspiring reporters becomes appearance and image. Thus the skills to do deep reporting simply vanish from their forte.

Another consequence of this is that those that still try to bring the real stories to the public become unhinged in the eyes of the MSM. Modern day Electras. Screaming they are mad as hell and they are not going to take it any more. They do not fit the mold being presented and thus can be marginalized.

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ibegurpard Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:14 PM
Response to Reply #4
9. Yes...you can no longer watch "Network" and view it as satire.
It is prescient.
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ultraist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:52 PM
Response to Reply #4
14. Soundbites, flashy sets, attractive *news* figures: glitz & glamour
Excellent points AZ! Your comment here is right on the money: "Particularly as the media shifted into the hyperconnected sound bite style of reporting. Any story that cannot be distilled down to a 30 second sound bite falls to the side. Nuance and thought are eradicated in this format. Anything that takes time to consider cannot fit into a formated segment."

The M$M has PIMPED MY NEWS!


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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:10 PM
Response to Original message
5. Excellent! - but how do we improve logos at MSM?
:-)
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 07:47 AM
Response to Reply #5
48. I don't think we can. What we need is to build ethos at a select
few blogs. I think it can be done, although it will take considerable time--years.

We need to build up 3-5 blogs so that they are popular enough to be more than self-sufficient, but only slightly. No blogger is in it for the money, and it's far too much work to attract MSM types, who besides all their other problems, are notoriously lazy.

Blogs are also less apt to be infiltrated by the omnipresent Heritage/Cato/AEI interns that have infected the networks as writers and researchers. The reporters are too lazy to question their material, so the slanted crap gets on the air. No doubt they will go after this media too, but if we can build a couple of strong blogs, their (the RW stinks) influence will be much less.

Three to five blogs that can be trusted. Eschaton is one, Truthout, others?
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AuntiBush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:10 PM
Response to Original message
6. The whole thing is that
the White House allowed this faux reporter to cause to much damage, with his pre-scripted pundit remarks that certainly helped beat poor Kerry. It's just one more illegal scandal to add to the repuks pile, growing ever larger each day.

That's what Homeland Security money gets ya, huh! They really take their supporters and the American public for "fools!" Disgraceful! When will the other side "get it?"
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Spazito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:11 PM
Response to Original message
7. Excellent!
*
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Joanne98 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:11 PM
Response to Original message
8. Never create a vacume..........
And if you do never fill it with boring celeb trials.
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Az Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:23 PM
Response to Original message
10. Kick Read this!
:kick:
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KoKo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:23 PM
Response to Original message
11. Excellent read and well said about Blogs. The good ones
have so much interaction that they have to be self-correcting. Not something that can be said about the MSM anymore.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 07:50 AM
Response to Reply #11
49. Self-correcting--exactly. Most of us have seen it happen at DU.
Again, I think we need to bring lots of attention to a select 3-5 blogs (the fewer, the better) and build up their ethos.

It's not a quick fix, but it's a damn good one.
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lala_rawraw Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:24 PM
Response to Original message
12. That comes in to play...
When one deals with blogs and with indie press. Diarists have more freedom on how they discuss stories, issues. I think both forms rae needed, but they are different bodies. Now if we could just find a way to have the two sides work together, would be great.
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ultraist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 03:37 PM
Response to Original message
13. *standing ovation*
Absolutely! Certain logos (as in company logos, not logos-logic) give *news* companies carte blanche (false creditability--ethos gone astray) to say whatever they'd like, regardless of the creditability of the story, and people buy it.

I think that *news* companies, in large part, have won over people in the pathos area because blogs are just text with a name. Seeing real people speak and feeling as if you "know" them draws people in emotionally. The audience has more "face contact" so to speak.

With blogs, we may recognize names, put there is still some disassociation here, because we don't see these people. Consider Keith Olberman for example, I've read posts here that say, 'he's sexy' 'I love him', 'he's my guy' etc. Being able to see the person speak is a powerful way to bring the pathos into the equation.

I'd love to see blogs incorporate live video feed for this and other reasons.

Excellent commentary! recommended
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Az Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:06 PM
Response to Original message
15. Read this and learn
:kick:
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Raksha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:10 PM
Response to Original message
16. Remarkable insight, Plaid Adder. This post is a keeper! n/t
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ultraist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:13 PM
Response to Original message
17. CNN is doing a report right now on blogs
:kick:

And how blogs have broken several stories. Judy is being very condescending about blogs. SURPRISED?
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kodi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:13 PM
Response to Original message
18. the "ethos" part is being undercut by the "credentialization" of society
Once you have your credentials, you don't have to prove much of anything.

It is a lazy path society has taken where substance is not as important as the emblem of credentials one holds.

I hold a doctorate in chemistry and I cannot tell you the number of times people defer to me because I have the "Ph.D." after my name on a business card. I could tell clients the Moon was made out of Swiss cheese and they would believe it.

Why?

Credentialization is a short cut people take instead of independent thinking in our modern society because of its complexity.

With the MSM their credentials are well established and they don't really have to live up to them, because so few obsevers can catch them faking it.

This is why DU and other Internet sites that have hammered the MSM are cast as on the fringe because the MSM are getting caught using their credentials instead of doing what they are supposed to do.
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upperleftedge Donating Member (93 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:25 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. Few things make me gladder....
than reading Plaid Adder. The blogs are the New England town meeting combined with the grapevine. Xerox said, "Every man a publisher." The blogs make everyone a journalist, or at least a source. We out number the MSM by a factor of hundreds. We can even out spend them as the Dean Campaign proved. The Free People's Media lives! The truth will out! We have their attention so now is the time to lay Bush's lies out on the table and force an impeachment. Yes, we can do this. The documentation of 'high crimes and misdemeanors' in one place that is linked to every progressive blog and bombarded to MSM every day will have an effect. The material is already out there we just need to post it, perhaps in a wiki site, where we can all add our parts. This is our fifteen minutes we need to use it wisely while the spotlight is on us.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 07:55 AM
Response to Reply #18
50. I believe it was you who first mentioned the LAZY press to me.
No matter, but it really opened my eyes. They rely on their 'credentials' so that the REPORTERS no longer write the stories. They are written and researched by grunt grads from the RW think tanks.

It's not any accident either.

How do we open America's eyes to the manipulation?
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mike6640 Donating Member (621 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:32 PM
Response to Original message
20. Read this now! Well said.
n/t

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DireStrike Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:35 PM
Response to Original message
21. Excellent Write up.
I was just thinking about this myself, but I fear I'm not as articulate. I had the basics of a peripheral idea formed, but I doubt it would have gotten into post form.

My thinking was spurred by the MSM reporting of Gannongate. Their tagline: did the bloggers go too far? screamed out that it was not a story. They could not lay claim to the story, so they lashed out blindly at its source. And how did they do that? By trying to discredit "the blogs". Saying that we went "too far" is to say that our story was not a proper story. By covering it then, we must be amateurs, or we must have done something wrong in the covering. By using this excuse, they can offer the same story we did originally without having to do any work at all.

Of course, whether anyone went "too far" is itself a nonstory. This event happened, and similar ones will continue to happen. The coverage by blogs happened, and will continue to happen. Blogs don't care about going "too far." They do not base their power on credibility, just on reporting and discussing (emphasis on reporting.)

The MSM is working hard to hurt this story. There are only two explanations - first, that it might show their ties with political power, and second, that it might prove to be a threat to their livelihoods. I find it hilarious to watch them thrash about, trying to fling mud at electrons. They don't have a clue what is happening. This must mean that they don't know what they're doing wrong. They shame themselves with their ignorance, but to show knowledge of guilt would be worse. I am glad to see them taken down a peg(the first of many to come), and am also glad that it seems the problems flow from stupidity and not malice.
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Az Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:56 PM
Response to Original message
22. Kick for the after work crowd.
:kick:
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youspeakmylanguage Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 04:57 PM
Response to Original message
23. Excellent post, but...
NPR's long-established credentials as an in-depth, liberal-leaning news outlet mean that it is retaining its listeners long after its ideological center has shifted and its practices have gone into decline.

When did NPR start going into decline? I know you are one of the best writers here, but can you provide some examples to back up your assertions?
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LiberalCompassionate Donating Member (112 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 07:27 PM
Response to Reply #23
34. NPR
is under new management. I have been an avid fan of NPR for years, but recently (last two+ years?) NPR has definitely moved from center-left to center-right. I can hear their nuanced RW bias during "all things considered" segment on my commute home in the evenings. I now listen to AirAmericaRadio on 1190 AM from NY, which, reception wise, makes me feel like I'm listening to radio free Europe on a shortwave radio during wartime.

BTW, excellent post on analysis of why MSM continues to influence the majority of Americans. The MSM has effectively transferred the viewing public's trust (ethos) of real journalists from the 60's, like Cronkite, et al., to the "new journalist=highly paid, good-looking mouthpiece to spew bushco propaganda and/or celebrity trash", seamlessly. This phenomena also occurred during gulf war I for the news show "McNeil-Leher" on PBS after it was reformatted and renamed the "News Hour".
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 07:59 AM
Response to Reply #34
51. Huge problem for NPR; huge corporations are sponsoring them.
And the new management stops just short of allowing them to advertise.

It's a tragedy. I once looked to them for the ONLY objective news out there. I saw them once as spinproof. No longer. I can't even listen except to "Prairie Home Companion" anymore.
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youspeakmylanguage Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 10:39 AM
Response to Reply #34
56. I can't detect a RW bias at all...
Edited on Tue Feb-15-05 10:41 AM by youspeakmylanguage
...in fact, NPR is the only news source I completely trust. If anything, they moved from left of center to dead center, which is where they should be. And I still think they have more integrity than all of the corporate news companies combined.

Unfortunately, I can't get Air America down here in NC, so I'll continue to support my local NPR News station.

Just for the record, I do not, nor have I ever, actually worked for NPR. I do give them money, but I have never volunteered to fundraise.
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Tyrone Slothrop Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 05:01 PM
Response to Original message
24. As a student of (and degree-holder) in Rhetoric,
I found this piece to be quite well-reasoned, astute and insightful.

Great points all around, Plaid Adder.

Additionally, I think it must be noted that portions of this post can be applied to American society as a whole and not merely the media. The capacity, the ability, and, most importantly, the interest in listening to and parsing arguments based on logos is dying in America.

This is not strictly about politics per se; intellectualism is dying in America. Partly due to the fact that it is under siege by some of out faith-based countrymen, and partly due to the growing apathy of the populace.

You've definitely given me a lot to think about, Plaid. Thanks!
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LynzM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 06:23 PM
Response to Reply #24
27. Well, I don't have a degree in Rhetoric
But I thought this was a great post. And TS, I agree with your thoughts on intellectualism in America. More important that you know what happened 'on TV' or who won sports events, than you have any ideas about actual reality and events going on in the world. I find that both sad and alienating.
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porkrind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 01:17 AM
Response to Reply #24
45. "Tyrone Slothrop"
What a great nom de plume. I hope it's your real name. :)
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crispini Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 05:04 PM
Response to Original message
25. Bravo!
:thumbsup:
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Vox_Reason Donating Member (589 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 06:09 PM
Response to Original message
26. Good show, Plaid Adder!
Well done. :toast:
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FlyingIrishman Donating Member (4 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 06:34 PM
Response to Original message
28. As soon as accountability goes out the window
things go awry. I think that the reason there seems to be a tendency for the MSM to wear its disdain for the blogosphere on its sleeve is due, more than anything, to the issue of accountability. As the Plaid Adder so brilliantly stated, the abundance of ethos has, over the years, rendered logos obsolete; the emergence of blogs and the tenacious fact-checking of bloggers has made the MSM very uncomfortable. If something is erroneously reported, or the facts are skewed, it takes a fraction of a second for a blogger to start throwing up red flags. This has so annoyed the major media outlets; just look at the way the talking heads handled Gannon or any other issue concerning the increasingly noticeable lack of accountability and credibility in journalism. As an example, can you imagine a grad or post-grad student submitting a paper without having every aspect of it scrutinized and checked for veracity or "logos"? Why does the mainstream media expect their production to be any different? All I can say is thank you to all who work so hard to check the facts, do the research, and shed light on the truth. You are my heroes. As a side note, I attend an extremely conservative university in FL, and I know that your work is making a difference when I hear republicans on campus talking about conservative hubris that has been debunked in cyberspace. Keep up the good work.
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TiredTexan Donating Member (489 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 12:25 AM
Response to Reply #28
44. Welcome, Flying Irishman
Hope you like it here.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 08:01 AM
Response to Reply #28
52. Welcome to DU!
You will find the quality of news analysis in LBN to be top-notch, if decidedly slanted.

Hope you enjoy it.

:toast:
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hippiegranny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 06:45 PM
Response to Original message
29. love ya, Plaid
You're so incredibly insightful. I agree on every point. For the poster who questioned your comments about NPR: maybe they can tell us what NPR has done lately that the MSM hasn't? What progressive viewpoint have they advanced that you wouldn't hear otherwise? I still listen, but with the reasoning that what I hear there is pretty much what the MSM is saying. If I want to hear another viewpoint, one that more closely matched mine, I tune in to AirAmerica, not NPR.
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Pithy Cherub Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 07:05 PM
Response to Original message
30. Elegant and filled with wisdom!
The mainstream media is trying to preserve its brand by appealing to the sources of revenue. They have deflated their own brand by being capitalists and not humanists. Blog consumers are content driven and enjoy substantive analysis with verifiable facts. MSM media wants their opinions to be paramount - hence their audience erosion of epic proportions.

Excellent essay!
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 07:05 PM
Response to Original message
31. Plaid Adder, I studied English
So, I know nothing about rhetoric. lol

Thank you for the break down. Brain candy on a very appropriate day, with a lot of gut satisfaction to boot.
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rocktivity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 07:10 PM
Response to Original message
32. A very salient point
Edited on Mon Feb-14-05 08:07 PM by rocknation
But here's the problem: because these MSM outlets are used to skating by on ethos and pathos, they are really falling down on the job when it comes to logos.

Brilliantly illustrated by this dustup DU thread about Aaron Brown's interview with the author of the Gannon story from Americablog.

Some argued that Brown should be credited for bringing the blogger onto the show and letting him express his views unchallenged, especially since his colleague Wolf Blizter had given such a sychophantic interview to Gannon himself. Others (present company included) felt that Brown had the wrong end of the stick. He advertised the interview by wondering "if left wing blogs went too far in 'outing' the guy simply because they disagreed with his politics." And he began the segment by describing the story as a "fuss" that had a "'so what?' quality." Brown's motive for inviting the blogger seemed to have more to do with wanting to scold him for his "naughty" behavior than with showing fairness and balance.

So what? I'll tell you so what, Mr. Brown: you and the rest of the mainstream media are running on nothing but pathos now. Because your "So what?" lacks logos, I don't know if it's sincere, or if it's CNN'S way of ensuring that it doesn't lose its own seat at the Bush White House media table. It means that I'm thinking about Dave Letterman And The Yawning Kid again. IT MEANS I DON'T KNOW IF I CAN TRUST YOU ANYMORE, THAT'S SO WHAT!!!!

:headbang:
rocknation
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 07:12 PM
Response to Reply #32
33. Oh dear, there's your good common sense all over n/t
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pearl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 08:07 PM
Response to Reply #33
36. Main Stream Media seems to have gotten out
of the truth telling, fact based, information providing business and
are now exclusively in the product selling business.

They sell Products (and services) period.

Thanks Plaid Adder for you usual moment of clarity.
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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 08:02 PM
Response to Original message
35. "getting on TV seems to really boost your ethos..."
yes - and I don't know what will ever change that....
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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 02:25 AM
Response to Reply #35
47. Better "internets" would help
When we get to the point where there is no broadband/dsl - dialup divide, when all you have to do to see quality moving images IMMEDIATELY on a computer is point to a screen, when memory, downloading and all of that concrete stuff is no longer an issue, then you'll see this reliance on TV for ethos fading away. Right now, TV is STILL "the" way to get the images. Yeah, you can git 'em on the 'internets' but that remains a laborious process.

When the day comes when some dedicated activist in the spare bedroom can produce a slick, professional production that is easy to get, high quality, compelling, and has all of those ethos/pathos/logos elements, the lamestream media can just bend over and kiss their asses goodbye.

Of course, the gubmint might want to prevent that, if at all possible...can't let we, the people control the message in a *cough, choke* "democratic" society....!
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 08:06 AM
Response to Reply #47
53. Support your local libraries! Most provide broadband service
to the public.

The one I work for always has waiting lines, patrons are limited to an hour a day--and we're pretty generous.

Funds are perpetually being cut while the service demand perpetually increases. The people who need the service the most are in the worst positions to support the libraries.

Every little bit helps, and it can be earmarked for internet service.
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peacetalksforall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 08:42 PM
Response to Original message
37. The breakdown of MSM mo these days is portioned out this way -
. Shilling for the WH, military, reverends, and bankers/investors.
. Creating news from activities and personalities at competing networks (though I don't think they really compete anymore - they're all in one pot with different corporate names for the sake of the illusion of democracy and capitalism.)
. Creating news from crimes of celebrities and celebrity types of crimes (deaths of fetuses in the stomach), creating guilt when the accused is probably innocent. Chasing police cars from the clouds.
. Creating heart news - excessive coverage of (for example) amputee soldier returning to service in Iraq with interviews of families.
. Creating a vacumn of news by not reporting essential legal and constitutional boundaries.
. Using the work of an investigative reporter on a so-called competing network as their news.
. Attempting to create news by goading and exciting a guest.
. Glorifying investigators who are on the right. Ridiculing everyone else.
. Shoving apologist and operative opinions down our throats.

Very heavy on pathos. Because they believe we are stupid as a result of their successes in getting us to follow/swallow. Their recipe may no longer require ethos. You're right about blog ethos. Even on DU - how many messages contain only one word - Link?

Excellent article, Adder!
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annabanana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 08:56 PM
Response to Original message
38. Thank you! I shall get myself an adder of crystal.
For that is how clear your post makes it!
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Wrinkle_In_Time Donating Member (664 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 10:22 PM
Response to Original message
39. Didn't you threaten to stop posting on this board?
Please don't threaten that again*. Nice post.

*Unless it wasn't you: my memory isn't what it once was. I do recall someone having a small DU-existential crisis shortly after the-November-2004-event-that-shall-not-be-called-an-election (TN2ETSNBCAE, for short) and deciding not to post as much. If it was you, thanks for changing your mind. If it wasn't you, please go find that person and show them your post.
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joytomme Donating Member (62 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 10:37 PM
Response to Original message
40. Thinking...thinking
I was thinking today too. I was thinking about the silent majority. And I do think the majority of people are silent...or at least they keep their counsel with only a few people.

The GOP and the MSM are bent on trying to make everyone believe that the majority of people are noisy and talking and noisily proselytizing the line of crappola the GOP and MSM are handing out.

I don't think they are.

Now...god only knows what these people who don't say much are actually thinking...but I don't think they're buying the horseshit.

I even have friends in Indiana who don't have a computer...there they are in Indiana, staunch voting Democrats and they don't have a computer. How many more are out there like that?

All we know is that 60% of the eligible voters voted and of that number, 51% voted Repub and 49% voted Dem. What more do we know for sure?

Joy Tomme (http://ratfuckdiary.blogspot.com )



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Jacobin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 10:37 PM
Response to Original message
41. Standing Ovation
:thumbsup:
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G_j Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 10:42 PM
Response to Original message
42. excellent, better than the NYT ...n/t
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WatchWhatISay Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-05 11:38 PM
Response to Original message
43. So that's really not what they're into any more
That just says it all.
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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 01:24 AM
Response to Original message
46. Excellent article! n/t
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union_maid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 08:11 AM
Response to Reply #46
54. Puts things perfectly
As to the MSM and this story, it's hard to believe that there's no one...no one at all...out there who wants to delve deeper and find out what this is all about. Americablog has done the legwork and come up with startling information. In information, however, raised a LOT of questions about what is going on in this administration. And there's no journalist in any outlet in this whole country other than bloggers who wants answers? This is disheartening on a whole new level.
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ElectroPrincess Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 10:36 AM
Response to Reply #54
55. Where's our Democratic representatives and senators?!?
They should be screaming this from the rafters. This is NO time to take the high ground when our best "republican lite" but still good President was IMPEACHED for much less.

We need our gutless wonder Democratic politicians to grow a spine and make NOISE. At this point in our progression toward fascism, only THEY can get the MSM to pay attention.
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bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 11:27 AM
Response to Original message
57. "Between Truth and Lies..."
Edited on Tue Feb-15-05 11:28 AM by bloom
"It is impossible for someone to lie unless he thinks he knows the truth," Mr. Frankfurt writes. "A person who lies is thereby responding to the truth, and he is to that extent respectful of it."

The bull artist, on the other hand, cares nothing for truth or falsehood. The only thing that matters to him is "getting away with what he says," Mr. Frankfurt writes. An advertiser or a politician or talk show host given to "does not reject the authority of the truth, as the liar does, and oppose himself to it," he writes. "He pays no attention to it at all."

<snip>

"These were opposite, incompatible ways of persuading people," he added. "You could persuade them with rhetoric" - or - "with sophistic arguments that weren't really sound but that you could put over on people, or you could persuade them by philosophical arguments which were dedicated to rigor and clarity of thought."

<snip>

Why we are more tolerant of than lying is something Mr. Frankfurt believes would be worth considering.

"Why is lying regarded almost as a criminal act?" he asked, while bull "is sort of cuddly and warm? It's outside the realm of serious moral criticism. Why is that?"


http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/14/books/14bull.html?inc...


Seems like a "Bullshit Artist" - as he describes - uses pathos with some kind of mixed up ethos and made up logos.
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hardreader Donating Member (1 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 04:35 PM
Response to Original message
58. Ethos, Pathos, & Logos
Dear Adder,
First off let me apologize for any fragments that might appear as a result of my inexperience with the medium.

Your post drew a hugely enthusiastic response, and I would like to suggest that it did so as a result of a pathetic (as opposed to a "logical") appeal. As a rhetorician, the danger that I see in your application of Aristotle's rhetoric, is that it does not observe what Aristotle knew well--that logic is a process, and that in and of itself, it has no content.

Statements cannot be logical, nor can they be sound, or valid. Arguments can be logical, sound, and valid, but that says _nothing at all about their truth_ (which again Aristotle knew well).

In order to begin an argument you make an assertion. Your target audience, if you have chosen carefully, will accept that assertion (indeed if your audience will not, you a talking to the wrong people). You will then follow that assertion with another (or leave the 2nd merely implied) and from the two statements draw a conclusion. If the argument is sound, and the statements are true, the conclusion will be true.

Unfortunately there is no way to determine the truth of the statements (premises). If you reply that the premises follow from others, then we are not at the "beginning" of the argument.

I am arguing, then, that all arguments (applications of reason to statements) begin in assumptions that your audience will accept or not. Your audience has no choice but to accept the premises _on the basis of how they feel about them_, not on logical bases. "All men are created equal" is an utterly emotional statement. The notion of "creation" begs a huge number of questions and the term "equal" is not defined, but we agree to what was a defiant (and illogical) assertion to the king of England that meant, "You cannot talk to us unless you understand that in defiance of the divine right of kings, we intend to behave _as if_ this statement was true.

So what was your appeal? Your respondents seem to take you to have said "We argue from reason while they "argue" from emotion. Their appeals to emotion cover their lack of Logos" while ours, less effective, remain superior to theirs. We lost, but we lost for "good" reasons. If we play like them we will become them, and in doing so we will lose our souls, our identities, and our virtue.

But rhetoric, regardless of how you regard its components _always_ makes its appeal on the basis of what the auditor will accept _prior to logical appeal_. Thus to congratulate ourselves on our virtue simply ignores that they played the emotional appeal better than we did.
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Esra Star Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-15-05 10:38 PM
Response to Reply #58
59. Welcome to the big club
I really enjoyed your first post.
You certainly read a lot more into the adder's post than I
did.
I tend to think that the blogosphere is going to be a whole
lot more educative than the traditional newsmedia/viewsmedia.
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