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Blog post for Prof. Cifatte’s recitations

November 27, 2011

Due by 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 28:

Evaluate how your perspective has changed over the course of the semester. Pick one article on something in the news this week, identify if for us (include the link), and explain how your critical eye is different now when you read/watch the news from what it was in August.

28 Comments leave one →
  1. marycastro000 permalink
    November 27, 2011 10:38 am

    The article I used is the article I also used for the group presentations we had a couple of weeks back. I chose this article because this article, for me, shows what a bias article looks like. If I would have read the article before this class I honestly would have not seen anything wrong with it. But after taking this class I see that the person who wrote this article claims that he is all-knowing and does not quote any experts. This would have went over my head if I read this before August. Through this class I also have learned how to look at articles critically and question a journalist credibility if they “did not open the freezer.”

  2. November 27, 2011 5:02 pm

    I chose an article on the Jose Ortiz shooting. Prior to this class, if I read this article I might have just been appalled by what I read and not really think much afterwards. However, learning about news neighborhoods, I can say that there is some propaganda in this article. I felt that while reading, the journalist subtly portrayed the law enforcement and the American government as incompetent and trigger happy fools. I myself was swayed to cry injustice at our government and saw the flaws in their “justified shooting.” There was also sympathy bias for the Ortiz family, where the article had more words describing why the SWAT was wrong than how Jose had to be shot countless times. After this class, I can see when an article demonstrates bias, or when there are missing pieces to the article as a whole.

  3. Taylor Dawson permalink
    November 27, 2011 6:32 pm

    I chose to read an article regarding the Bernie Fine scandals at Syracuse University. After I chose this topic I read many different articles from many different news sources. Until I came across this article from the Post-Standard (located in Syracuse) they all seemed to be nearly identical. All of the articles discussed the third accuser of Bernie Fine, Zach Tomaselli, and simply stated that he faced sexual assault charges of his own in Maine, whereas the article from the Post-Standard gave many details regarding his charges, seeming to focus the spotlight on Tomaselli rather than Fine. Back in August I would have simply looked at the Post-Standard article as a more detailed interpretation, but now knowing the large effect that geographical location can have on the bias of an article I know differently. My perspective has definitely changed in more ways than one as whenever I read a news article now I am always looking critically and searching for bias throughout.

  4. Melissa Bognaski permalink
    November 27, 2011 6:43 pm

    Throughout this semester I have learned to become a more critical news consumer. I now feel as if I am a news analyst, instead of an ordinary citizen that easily falls prey to “bull” news. Before this class I never evaluated what I needed and wanted from the news. I also never knew how to determine the trustworthiness of the source. Now I know that there are six different news neighborhoods that have different goals and outcomes in mind.
    The article I chose is about this Sundays’ sinking of a cargo vessel in the Irish Sea. Because of what I have learned over this semester I quickly realized that the source was biased. It fell under the news neighborhood called publicity. The whole article seemed to be dedicated to Prince William, who helped saved two of the members of the ship. It did not mention the pilot of the Royal Air Force chopper that led the rescue. It also hardly mentioned the reasons behind the sinking. A thank you is due to this class for letting me realize the article’s goal was to enhance the Prince’s image.

  5. Heather Comitz permalink
    November 27, 2011 7:57 pm

    Before August I felt I was a normally consistent news consumer. However consistent I may have confided in the news, I never really looked at the reliability of the sources used to produce the news article! The article I chose is about William Ackman and Carl Icahn ‘battling’ against each other for a ‘paltry $4.5 million.’ This article clearly falls within the entertainment category of the information neighborhoods. I felt as though the author focused more on his opinion of these two so-called “wall street titans” more than actual raw information. It seems the author has no direction in this article; it seems to go nowhere and lacks a purpose besides solely for entertainment purposes only. He is guilty of libel against the two and obviously dislikes the entire situation that’s going on between them. I wouldn’t trust his sources nor his truthfulness. Throughout the semester, I’ve learned of the information neighborhoods, how to decipher “bull,” libel and biased, and the reliability of sources.

  6. Heather Comitz permalink
    November 27, 2011 7:57 pm

    Forgot to include the article:

    Before August I felt I was a normally consistent news consumer. However consistent I may have confided in the news, I never really looked at the reliability of the sources used to produce the news article! The article I chose is about William Ackman and Carl Icahn ‘battling’ against each other for a ‘paltry $4.5 million.’ This article clearly falls within the entertainment category of the information neighborhoods. I felt as though the author focused more on his opinion of these two so-called “wall street titans” more than actual raw information. It seems the author has no direction in this article; it seems to go nowhere and lacks a purpose besides solely for entertainment purposes only. He is guilty of libel against the two and obviously dislikes the entire situation that’s going on between them. I wouldn’t trust his sources nor his truthfulness. Throughout the semester, I’ve learned of the information neighborhoods, how to decipher “bull,” libel and biased, and the reliability of sources.

    • Chris Cifatte permalink
      November 29, 2011 9:27 am

      got it – thanks.

  7. November 27, 2011 8:23 pm

    I chose to read this article because it is clearly biased right off the bat. The title “Herman Cain stumbles badly on Libya question” contains a biased opinion. While reading the article, I came across many biased statements where the author is trying to get us to form a negative opinion about Herman Cain. For example, the statement “The video is particularly damaging for Cain, who has struggled on matters of foreign policy in the past” is trying to sway our view of Cain’s history as a public figure. This class has taught me to “detect bull” when reading articles like this and point out a biased opinion from a clearly stated fact. I am not saying whether I like or dislike Herman Cain, but I would rather read clearly stated facts about the situation and form my own opinion about him, rather than read a biased article that is obviously trying to get me to agree with the author’s point of view.

  8. Jasmine Lewis permalink
    November 27, 2011 8:33 pm

    I have a whole different perspective on news media since taking this course. I always considered news very boring and was more in to entertainment news than anything else. Now, when reading about current events or watching the news, I am more alert. I now look for bias language and viewpoints. Before, I had no idea that the media’s viewpoints were obviously imprinted in articles without actually bluntly giving them. For example, this Sunday one of my favorite NFL players, Tim Tebow showcased his talent in the Denver Broncos vs. San Diego Chargers game and sporting news wrote an article about it. Normally, when reading something like this I would take it as an article stating general news. But now, I can clearly identify when the author is taking sides on an issue. The headline reads, “Tim Tebow surprise: Touchdown pass burns Chargers.” The word “burn” makes it sound like Tim Tebow alone, beat the chargers. Also, the author begin with the phrase “Take that, naysayers.” Clearly the author is a Tebow fan.

  9. Nathan Ingham permalink
    November 28, 2011 3:11 am

    Since the beginning of the year I have learned a lot about news sources, reliable news, and how to detect “bull”; although that sounds pretty cliche. I now have a tendancy to look at magazines while in the cash line in a grocery store just to see the headlines; I can’t believe some of the stuff is even aloud to be published. Through this class I have gotten a lot better at sterring clear of unreliable sources and finding good news.
    I chose an article regarding Sidney Crosby’s return to the NHL after coming back from a head injury. The first line of the article says…. “Sidney Crosby is still the best, particularly at inspiring hyperbole.” an immediate shot at Crosby and shows the bias, he doesn’t like Crosby being talked up (i’m guessing he’s not a big fan). He then goes on to say that they were playing a below sub-par team AND that they had a 4th string goalie in, at this time he points out that he is not going to bring up a conspiracy that the league planned a soft return for Crosby. This was a very obvious technique of bringing up that he thinks there was a conspiracy, to make a great player look even better. Before this class I would have skimmed through it and moved on with life.

  10. Laureen Esposito permalink
    November 28, 2011 12:03 pm

    Honestly this course has taught me some serious lessons. For one, news is important and not just something that is printed and shown on TV at certain times. I know can say I watch the news and can tell what is reliable and what isn’t. The worst thing I would say is some of the trash printed in magazines .

    The article I chose to look at is The American Idea and 2012
    Basically is an article praising Obama for all he has done. It is extremely biased in his favor and this is something I wouldnt have really noticed before because like I stated early i never even watched or read about the news. It goes on to say that the 2012 election is more than just an election its the American Idea and how badly it is being trashed in the campaign promises.

    Honestly this article is one of the most biased ones I have read in a while but it also has some good hard facts to back up the opinions expressed although I dont agree with the opinion stated in the article. At least the author took initiative to go and find sources to back up his opinion.

  11. Brittany Hubbard permalink
    November 28, 2011 12:55 pm

    The article I chose was Boat crashes into seawall, 2 hospitalized from Before entering this class, I would of just read the article and believed everything they said even though they did not provide enough facts and enough outside sources. Now looking at this article. I see that they only used one outside source, which was someone from marine towing. As a consumer I want to know that all the facts are true therefor I want to have back up as to where they got the information and facts from. Just listing the sequence of the accident and the minor details is not enough information and factual evidence to help me fully believe and understand what the situation is. I have become more knowledgeable as to how to pinpoint the facts from the opinions.

  12. Tania Pluviose permalink
    November 28, 2011 12:56 pm

    In the article titled Barney Frank to Quit House After 30 Years, prior to taking this course, I would have only read one article from one news source. Now, however I look for different media sources addressing on specific article. This is because I now have a better understanding that one event can take on varied points of view. Addition the person who is reporting may attempt to not only inform to but persuade the audience of his or her point of view.
    Before this course I would first I look for claims and types of sources used to back them up. Additionally, I would look at word choice, and tone. I would try to decipher whether there is a subtext. The questions that now pop when I read or listen to news source is- what is the writer trying to tell me? Does he have an agenda? Is this his opinion that he’s trying to pass off as fact?
    In the article that is hyperlinked above, from The New York Times, this article is basically raw information. Basically everything discuss in this article can be verified by election poll results to show how long he has been reelected to his district primarily voting Democrat.
    In sum after taking this course I am somewhat more of a skeptical, I am not longer forces feed information, I filter a lot now.

  13. Andrew Yelich permalink
    November 28, 2011 2:32 pm

    I read more sports news than any other news out there. I’m truly uninterested in politics, and things like OWS. But sports news sparks my interest. And I don’t mean just the scores of the games. I think to see what the sports teams are doing off the field. Such as the article post above. Ohio State has scandal overshadowing its season and now they hire a big time coach. When the news first came out about Urban Meyer being the next coach at Ohio State I read the articles and thought they were some b.s. rumors and it’s not real. I thought they were too vague to be serious and there wasn’t enough info to really believe it. Then the article i posted came out and its clear to see that it is happening, with given dates and times of news conferences and such. I just look at the news now differently than in August in a way that I’m searching for the real data instead of a blown out of proportion headline. Tell me where and when this article can be proven, how did it come to be and who gave this information up or how it was gathered. Facts more than opinion or rumor is what separates what I think is real or not.

  14. November 28, 2011 2:42 pm

    Over the semester I have become better at determining what is accurate and what is not accurate news. I was surprised to see that so many journalists are biased. I chose an article that deals with the recent Syracuse scandal. In my effort to find an article that is accurate, Jason Whitlock of Fox Sports report stood out the most. He begins the article by describing how the truth is unclear at this point and how media outlets have furiously tried to make this a huge scandal like Penn State. In this scandal, Bernie Fine was recently fired from the head men’s basketball coach position at Syracuse University. The firing was due to allegations of Fine molesting team ball boys. Whitlock calls out ESPN for releasing un-credible recordings of a third party accusing FIne of molestation. The third party is a 14-year-old boy that is being called a liar by his own father. Whitlock proceeds to explain that the truth is still yet to be found. Journalists better have a good concept of what is true and what is not true because if more evidence comes out knocking the credibility of the case they will need to have an answer for their accusations.

  15. Michael Bridges permalink
    November 28, 2011 4:50 pm

    I’ve found that my critical eye has become much stronger through the semester, and an example of this would be this Huffington Post article about Herman Cain’s activities in Miami.

    Before this semester, I would have blindly believed everything these articles said, and would have been quite amused at the way that the writers take jabs at Cain at any opportunity. But I now see that I much prefer a straight re-telling of events, instead of the writer’s opinion on what happened. I find when reading articles that I notice these things more, and it is much easier to identify and note them, so that I do not include them in my own writing.

    I have also learned the importance of being able to back up every claim you make, especially in the world of journalism. Every claim needs to be supported by evidence, and every opinion needs to be grounded in some sort of accuracy, otherwise I’m taking a complete shot in the dark, which is never good.

  16. Carleen Hunt permalink
    November 28, 2011 5:59 pm

    While searching the internet for over an hour looking for a biased news article, I find it impossible to come across one. It is easy to point out biases when they are in an article, but harder to go out there and look for them. My view has definitely changed though since the start of this semester. Rather than believing everything the media spews out, I now look at different aspects I never before thought about. Things such as who is writing or supporting the organization writing the article, and do they have an alterior motive for stating their so-called facts. Another thing to look for is expert opinion about a topic. If an author simply states what he thinks and does nothing to back it up, it is probably not the most reliable information. It is important to recognize fact from opinion. Another major thing to watch out for is expressive language. Words that provoke emotion or are very exaggerated are probably meant to get a feeling out of a reader and sway them in a certain direction, rather than simply informing them on the facts of the story.

  17. Adrienne David permalink
    November 28, 2011 6:22 pm

    I chose an article on the Syracuse coach that was fired amid a sex abuse investigation. (
    First of all, I have come to the realization that watching the news and knowing what is going on in the world makes everything that you hear through the grapevine, questionable. I have learned that if you want to know the truth, then you have to do some research every once in awhile. Usually with an article, I would just read it and believe it. Now that I have taken this class, I have to really look into it to figure out if sources are reliable, if what I am reading is truely believable. and finally, if what I am reading includes points compared to other article on the same subject have. Little phrases, like ” could not be contacted” or “some say or think (not being specific) would normally be ignored, now stick out and make me think about wording and factual evidence in news articles. Mainly, this class has given me insight on things that I normally would not care about, which in return I actually have a clue about what is happening around me, which is a very good thing.

  18. Karla permalink
    November 28, 2011 6:27 pm

    I was raised to always know what’s going on around the globe or to just simple simple watch my local news, but I usually saw myself not really paying too much attention. During August I found entertainment more important than actual news and I thought reading articles would just bring boredom. But this class has taught me to care and analyze what I’m reading. Now I can see what source is bias and which is not; I can identify the neighborhoods and the type of news the viewers get and how well they are supported. I was recently reading this article in CNN and it was about an Utah professor who was caught watching child pornography in a flight. As i was reading the article I automatically searched for bias comments and I found none. I think the article was pretty much neutral and news/articles like that are vital for the public.

  19. Melissa Roche permalink
    November 28, 2011 7:03 pm

    I chose a CNN article about Kansas governor Brownback apologizing for his staff’s “overreaction” to a tweet directed at him which was made by a student. I honestly didn’t realize how much of an impact this course had on my analysis of news. Without even acknowledging it, I was actively searching for biased undertones and words. Also, I took notice of the quoted sources and how the article portrayed each side of the argument. What surprised me the most, however, was that when I came upon a sentence that said that CNN contacted the student’s principal “but received no response”, I immediately recalled Professor Kenney’s lecture on transparency.
    Overall, I realized that I actually did develop a “BS meter” when it comes to analyzing the news. Whereas before I would tend to blindly believe and accept the news, I now question it and evaluate the sources in the news.

  20. Briana Jones permalink
    November 28, 2011 7:04 pm

    The article I found is from CNN about the SAT/ACT cheating scandal in Long Island, NY. According to the article, the two teens most recently arrested now the total to 20 arrests for identity fraud and other forms of cheating on the SAT. This article fits in the news category because it is informing the public of a serious offence. The only source they use though is a District Attorney which is pretty reliable. In the beginning of the semester I didn’t pay that much attention to the news. I took it for what it was, not really questioning it or thinking about it critically. Now when I look at news, I look at it differently. I know what news neighborhood it belongs to so, I already have an idea of what the reporter of the article or story is trying to do. I find that I’ll check the sources and how reliable they are. It makes me look at news differently and really question if they are delivering the truth.

  21. Samantha Jodice permalink
    November 28, 2011 7:16 pm

    As I read through the article on the new woman who is coming forth and saying that she and Herman Cain had an extramarital affair that lasted thirteen years, I no longer read this article with a blind eye but with a more critical eye. I now know to look for bias and unbiased statements and to look for hard evidence and facts, so as not to judge another individual with what could be false information. Truth is extremely important in the news industry and purely listening to what a news story says without researching the facts on your own could have the power to potentially destroy someones entire life, from their career to their relationships. Never listen and judge but instead take the time to search for your own judgments and be educated with real facts.

  22. Samantha Jodice permalink
    November 28, 2011 7:17 pm

    Here is the link for the above Herman Cain story:

  23. November 28, 2011 10:10 pm

    Before this class I really just took for what it’s worth, and didn’t really look much into it. After learning how to take an article and look for different clues of credibility I am able to recognize the falsities that are apparent in the media today. I chose an article about a teen who tweeted negative comments about the current Kansas governor Sam Brownback. The article was mostly raw information with no bias. It simply stated the facts and used quotes to back up that information. If more articles were like this one in the media it would be a lot clearer what was the truth and what was lies.


  24. Sheilla Dumel permalink
    November 28, 2011 10:57 pm

    Even though i am not a journalism major, i enjoyed taking this class before i did not even like watching the news, and still now i don’t but i have a different perspective when i do watch the news. i m still a little clueless when it comes to some things but i have a better clear understanding of what to look for. this is the link
    that i watch today on hermain cain denied his a ligation affairs with his wife behind him.

  25. Melissa Wolfe permalink
    November 28, 2011 11:56 pm

    Having taken this course this semester I have learned to look at news more critically. There was an article on fox news about Herman Cain and his alleged affairs. This article seemed to be more on Cain’s side then any of the articles that I read from MSNBC. This article seemed to put Cain in a much more positive light then many similar articles that I have read from other media outlets.

  26. Arcadia permalink
    November 29, 2011 12:48 pm

    The way I watch and read the news is different now then it was in August because now I find myself asking questions as I’m watching or reading a story and seeing whether or not those questions get answered in the story. Like with the one I posted about Suh from the Lions football team getting suspended, I wanted to know going in; why he got suspended, how long his suspension was going to be for and how this would affect the Lions chances. I also find myself checking for bias throughout the story and checking my own bias when listening/reading the story. I like how my critical eye has improved over the semester and made me a better news consumer.

  27. Emily Spaulding permalink
    December 1, 2011 1:44 pm

    Prior to this class, I read articles that related to my personal self-interests, that may possibly effect my life, and that usually related to pop culture and entertainment or gossip news. I have noticed my curiosity or what’s going on in the world around me has only grown throughout this semester. I think a lot of it has to to with the incorporation of news into twitter, as I am an avid tweeter. I look forward to reading the stories posted by our class twitter page each week and am genuinely interested. When reading stories, I ask myself; what bias exists in this story? who wrote the story and do they have any personal ties? does the story involve children, or someone that could cause a controversy to the public? I truly am beginning to have a passion for journalism and this class has mad me so much more excited to possibly pursue a career in this field.

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