Last week the team at HMA watched the Netflix documentary Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press. While I will let you watch the documentary (Click to view trailer) and form your own opinion, the focus was on three main stories: Hulk Hogan’s (or should I say Terry Bollea) court case against Gawker; the secret purchase of the Las Vegas Review-Journal and the Trump campaign, specifically the exclusion of the media coverage at specific events.
The interesting connection in all three stories was the impact that money and power can have (and have had) on the media process. That if one doesn’t like the stance a publication is taking or the coverage on them as individuals they can use their money and/or power to influence what is covered, as seen in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, or to put a media outlet out of business, as seen with the Hulk Hogan/Gawker case.
Right or wrong, I have always thought that certain media outlets tend to have a particular slant on certain issues and politics. They might have a liberal agenda or a conservative agenda (just watch the same news story on competing stations) but they are still reporting the news and we can form our own opinions based on the information we have. But what happens when we can only get one side (news outlets are excluded) or we can’t get either side at all (because a media outlet is put out of business)? Why is it okay for those that have money or power to control the messaging and the way we receive our media?