In: Other Topics
Media BiasDetecting Media Bias
June 21, 2012
Dr. Geneace Williams/University of Phoenix
Detecting Media Bias
The importance of making critical evaluations of news stories comes to play in the recent stories about the Trayvon Martin & George Zimmerman case. This is a story about a young black teenager and a neighborhood watchman that shot and killed the boy. Many news stations reported the story showing pictures of both of them that had been taken years prior to the actual event. Trayvon’s pictures showed him as an innocent boy and Zimmerman as upset and angry in a much earlier mug shot. The media shows bias to both these individuals and seemed to be concerned with sensationalism, rather than finding out the true facts in the case.
The concern they showed at the time the story broke, appeared to be geared towards selling the story and building the story into a racially motivated incident. The news was not completely clear or accurate and the investigative methods were not sufficient in either depth or breadth. The stories promoted the idea that Trayvon was an innocent young black kid who just happened to be out late at night and that Zimmerman was just looking to act as judge, jury and executioner. The pictures of George Zimmerman seemed to promote prejudice and negative emotions from the audience. They used bias in the news by deliberately ignoring more current pictures of both these individuals.
Many of the news channels seemed to deliberately ignore the truth of the story regarding what type of people both Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman were. A mug shot of a younger angry looking Zimmerman and a more recent picture shows Zimmerman in a dress coat and tie with him clearly smiling shows a distinct disregard for truthful reporting and bias in reporting. The news clearly chose to ignore any alternative perspectives in regards to this story. The stories focused on accusing Zimmerman of being an...