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    • Respectfully, I disagree.

      The topic is pandering versus unbiased reporting.

      It is not my purpose in this thread to discuss whether a certain set of "scriptures" is legitimate or not. My point is that if a group or a "preacher" claims that a certain set of "scriptures" are from God then those "scriptures" should not be wrested out of their context nor made to mean whatever is desired by the people who are listening. That is pandering. The correct attitude should be "that is what the text is saying" regardless of whether we like it or not.

    • But fiction framed as truth leads to disrespect and the eventual collapse of credibility.

      It's like Mason Weems biography of Washington. When it came out, it was a best seller but in the long run it completely destroyed Weems's reputation as a biographer.

      BTW, a case in point concerning the media's slanting of the news happened today. Google News listed headlines from five sources regarding Alito's dissent. Of the five, only CNN had a headline that accurately described the reason for Alito's dissent.

      ABC made it out that it had to do with him being "Conservative."

      The problem with that suggestion is that Alito acknowledged that the plaintiff's complaint might actually end up being valid.

      "...are important and may ultimately be held to have merit."

      Alito was angry with the attorneys regarding their timing of the filing.

      “If the tactics of Murphy’s attorneys in this case are not inexcusably dilatory, it is hard to know what the concept means,”

      In fairness, I should also state that "The Hill" headline was accurate but it was misleading.

      His complaint had nothing to do with the fact that the inmate in question was a Buddhist. He actually acknowledged that this subject needs to be considered and that the issues in question are important.

      Now personally, I think that Alito was wrong to oppose the blocking of the execution but I do understand on an intellectual level where he is coming from. His complaint concerning the tactics of attorneys and the idea that other attorneys might try the same tactic certainly has intellectual merit. Yet I do not think that he was right to oppose the blocking of the execution out of pique against the attorneys

    • Respectfully, I disagree.

      The topic is pandering versus unbiased reporting.

      I removed the laughing emoji from my post because while my intent was to be light-hearted about the topic drift, I can see how it might be construed as making light of your remarks. Which is absolutely not what I wanted to convey.

      But I do disagree with your assessment.

      We started with “On Anti-Social Media”.

      We then migrated to news media via your analysis, which I thought was quite informative and I enjoyed reading it.

      I also thought it was relevant because online news stories and headlines are optimized to get you to click, and many of the online techniques used by YouTube to feed you more and more conspiracy videos can be used by news agencies.

      So on the one hand, I can see an extension to other sources of manipulation. Which could include religion.

      On the other hand, it felt like the conversation was going in a direction completely different than the Medium article. Or completely different than what someone clicking on the conversation would expect to read based on the title and topics selected.

      I know you are quite knowledgeable on scripture and religion, based on reading other conversations you’ve started here.

      Would someone who followed one of these religions, which you’ve identified as pandering “to the cravings of humans and to preach man-made constructs falsely labeled ‘God’”, be offended to read what you said about their religion?

      If yes, then it feels like your comment should be moved to a religion topic conversation with a headline that makes clear it’s a criticism of religion.

      If not, then I was wrong to call “off-topic”.

    • An interesting of the daily newspapers in our city is deciding to try to get permission from the IRS to run as a nonprofit. I’m curious to see if that will have any impact on the mainstream media’s click-bait culture here.

    • Lidja,

      If this was only a product of financial concerns, this might be a solution. But, I think that the desire for relevance and attention is a driving motivation even in non-profits. As an example, NPR is not completely immune to the "click bait culture" syndrome. It may be a lower priority at NPR than some other news outlets but it still seems to exist.

    • Totally agree with you.

      Special interests can (and do) hijack nonprofits even more easily than they do for-profits.

      The local newspaper owner is a one-percenter himself, and he has used the newspaper personally to advance his own family’s agendas when it suits him, so I think this effort may be more of a PR move and an attempt to stem the tide of wealth that is draining from his own pocket than anything else. The sad thing is watching the hard-working staff get pinched more and more, and to see all the layoffs taking a toll on the quality and relevance of the journalism...