Lee (striver) wrote in blog_sociology,

Throughout much of my life there has been a problem of 'trial by media', where 'news' reports basically convicted people before the blood was dry. I believe it was the case of a gentleman wrongly accused of being the green river killer that lead to the widespread use of the word 'alleged' in the news. Not that such a mild change really made much difference.

So it is not surprising that the same issue is now popping up on the Internet. Trial by Facebook could silence witnesses. Here is an interesting case...


Will this be harder to control than mainstream media? Is the entire Internet going to become a jury of your peers?

Here are a couple more cases that question blogging in the courtroom



This last case differentiates between descriptive and evaluative. Many news sources now are more evaluative than descriptive and it is often subtle and hard to spot. Take for example the use of the term "scud" as a label for the Russian made rockets in the first Iraq war. That was not their actual name but a negative nickname NATO gave them. So even in the simple reporting of a "scud" missile attack there was a strong evaluative element. In the minds of many people, that became a war between the scuds and the Patriots. Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scud_missile

This issue, trial by blog, is really a bit larger than just court cases in the respect of influencing public opinion. Israel recently launched a large online propaganda campaign to promote their attack on Palestine. They used both Twitter and Youtube. Although their videos were removed from Youtube.


This is clearly trial by online media.
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