Post-‘Bias’ bias

Edward Driscoll at TechCentralStation says that Bernard Goldberg’s book Bias changed the landscape of media bias discussion.

The first big difference is a real sea change in how the media discusses the subject. In the past, any claims of bias were responded to with lines such as those Lesley Stahl tried to sell Cal Thomas on Fox News with in early January of 2003, when she said, “I don’t know of anybody’s political bias at CBS News. I really think we try very hard to get any opinion that we have out of our stories, and most of our stories are balanced.” Or as Howell Raines said the following month (only a few months before he resigned as the editor of The New York Times), “Our greatest accomplishment as a profession is the development since World War II of a news reporting craft that is truly non-partisan, and non-ideological, and that strives to be independent of undue commercial or governmental influence.”

But after Bias was released, and after the first round of the media’s Scud missile attacks against Goldberg, something remarkable happened. Journalists have started going on the record that they — and their employers — are biased.

Driscoll emphasizes the role of blogs in this process. Goldberg is concerned about irresponsible media monitoring online, but concludes that ‘the best places on the Web offer the kind of journalism that you don’t get from the evening news.’

Read it here.