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Opinion >  Letters

It’s ‘info-tainment,’ not news

I agree with Mr. Lythgoe (“Democrats, media don’t care,” March 28) that what he calls the media got way over its skis during the Mueller investigation, including Fox News and News Max as well as MSNBC and CNN.

The problem, Mr. Lythgoe, is the 24-hour news cycle, created in 1980 with the debut of Ted Turner’s CNN. Turner learned the hard way there aren’t enough resources at any network to cover actual news 24 hours a day. So networks started filling space with pundits and provocateurs who could be put under contracts to fill those holes in the news hour with speculation and opinion. It created the media sugar high called info-tainment. We get five minutes of actual news followed by 55 minutes of spin and speculation from right and left. And we seem have a bottomless appetite for it.

Mr. Lythgoe misses the mark when he refers to these info-tainers as mainstream media. They are entertainers who play to their slice of the cable audience. They provoke to entertain.

Real news media, meanwhile, did its job extraordinarily well since 2016. The New York Times, Washington Post and Wall Street Journal have all done outstanding investigative reporting about Russian interference in our 2016 election and the business practices of Trump, Inc. Just because they present facts that don’t comport with our prejudices doesn’t make them “fake news.”

There’s a reason these newspapers have been around for 200 years. You want news, read a real newspaper.

Jim Wavada

Spokane


 

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