Media Watch: The Sharyl Attkisson approach
Via Fox News:
If you’re a fan of all things Obama, NBC Universal’s online store has no fewer than 29 options for your buying pleasure — from a shirt with the president’s picture proclaiming “YES WE DID”…to both of his books…to a special inauguration DVD…to a refrigerator magnet of the first couple.
And don’t forget the Barack Obama Action Figure — yours for $15, plus tax.
You can buy them online — or at NBC Universal’s retail store in New York.
Some analysts say it’s good business, that NBC is simply offering what people want to buy. They point out that the adult version of the “YES WE DID” shirt ($25) was so popular, it sold out on the Web site.
But others note that there is no merchandise available that shows support for the other side of the political aisle. And they question whether the political bent of the items on sale are healthy for a corporation that operates an impartial news outlet.
Some of NBC’s item descriptions would seem to support that notion: “Bring reform to your refrigerator. Or at least keep company with the President while you’re at work, with the Barack Obama Magnet,” one item description reads.
“From Yes We Can to Yes We Did! Celebrate Barack Obama’s historic victory with the new ‘Yes We Did’ Unisex T-Shirt,” reads another.
But if your favorite color in the red, white and blue just happens to be red, you’re out of luck.
There are no t-shirts or refrigerator magnets for George and Laura Bush, and NBC did not say whether it ever sold Bush items after his victory in 2000.
The CBS and ABC online stores sell books about the president, but no merchandise. Fox and CNN do not sell books or gear.
Some journalism ethics scholars said NBC Universal’s focus on Obama merchandise was unseemly for a media outlet.
“The NBC Universal Store stands out for the amount of pro-Obama trinkets and gadgets and promotional material it sells. Its nearest competitor is CBS, which has a dozen items…books and the 60 Minutes interview with Obama,” DePaul University journalism professor Bruce Evensen said.
“The [NBC] site seems like a campaign stop for those following their messiah…The appearance that NBC isn’t reporting the news with fairness, balance and impartiality — but is instead cheerleading — is apparent,” he said.
This really is nothing new, unfortunately. As we read in the days leading up to the election and long after, the MSM – including the WaPo, McCatchy, NYT and other liberal news outlets were eager to sell Obama merchandise, including books which featured professional pictures and articles from the campaign trail, individual photos for sale on their websites, and a solicitation for people to buy congratulatory inaugural ads only – ads that would be featured in print and on the website of the Washington Post.
Not only were mainstream media journalists in the tank for Obama because they agreed with his platform and because they thought he was “hip” and “sexy” and, most importantly, messiah-like, but they also dug him because of the “historic nature” of his candidacy, which was a guaranteed ca$h cow.
Not watchdogs but lapdogs. Not investigative journalists but passive cultists. Just another day in the life of our so-called “non-partisan” MSM.