No longer just the basic networks, television offers all day coverage of the news on specific cable television channels like CNN and Fox News. With an increased emphasis on spectacles and the now, television often presents the news without the proper perspective, placement in time, and context (Fallows 53). This focus has created a “crisis in broadcast journalism” as the quality of television continues to deteriorate (Baym 259). But the creation of comedic television shows that brand themselves as “fake news” have recently captivated viewers. Although not necessarily the first comedic television show, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart achieved much success by becoming the first “fake news” show.
Meanwhile, some newspapers continued their campaign this week to have the controversial comedian Frankie Boyle purged from our screens for ever, and even suggested he has been snubbed by the British Comedy awards tonight. Are comedians really more offensive than ever? One of tonight's nominees, Shappi Khorsandi, and fellow comedian Steve Punt discuss new trends in comedy. But first, Emine Saner asks, why all the fuss about Gervais? Steve Punt: The thing that seems odd is that America has this vituperative political culture where there are news channels, radio stations and websites devoted to all-out assaults on politicians, but if you make jokes about Hollywood actors, people throw their hands up in horror.
In Baumgartner and Morris’s research on the attitudinal effects of soft news programs on American public indicates that there is an increase in viewers’ cynical exhibition towards the media and an overall degradation on the evaluation of candidates. Based on the findings of Baumgartner(2002, 2003b), soft news, in comparison to traditional hard news, focuses on entertainment by composing sarcastic and satirical comments about mainstream news and politicians. In addition to his research, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, an increasingly popular soft news program in the eyes of young Americans, centralizes their attention on jokes of candidate’s caricatures and uses pre-existing stereotypes on them, which negatively inflates viewers’ evaluation on candidates on the 2004 presidential campaign (Pew Research Center, 2004a). While The Daily Show may be entertaining at the expense of the flaws in candidate’s attributes, political process, and the media, their research portrays an increase in internal efficacy, a person’s confidence in their ability to understand politics and a decrease in external efficacy, a person’s beliefs about the government’s ability in covering the needs of people Based on experimental results and the statistic information acquired from the surveys, Baumgartner and Morris conclude that soft the decline in external efficacy is associated with the process of ridiculing both the media and the electoral (Jones, 2005) while the increase in internal efficacy is associated with simplification of the political process for passively attentive public – young Americans. Thus, the Baumgartner and Morris’s hypothesis of their research – a overall decrease in evaluation of candidates (especially lesser known candidates like John Kerry in comparison to George Bush) and an increase cynicism towards the news media and the electoral process – proves that exposure
Bowling for Columbine, a documentary written and directed by Mr Michael Moore in 2002 after the horrific shooting at Columbine High School, on April 20th 1999. Not long after the shooting, Americans were quick to blame violent video games, movies and heavy metal music artists. Mr Moore believes that this is not the reason, but believes that it was caused by America's relaxed gun laws. Through the use of technical, written and audio codes Moore did an excellent job at portraying his negative views about America's gun laws and how racist America is. In this documentary Mr More used an audio code known as a voice over, one example is where he showed us a film of buildings being blown up and saying over the top of this clip “and the president ordered the bombing of another country we couldn’t pronounce”.
She uses different numbers and awards to show how devoted the shows fans are and how well the show is actually doing. Peacocke talks about her own struggle with the shows offensive humor but then now she realizes the use of humor in the jokes. The author uses different segments of the show to show how although the jokes are, at first glance, offensive the hidden meaning is simply "pointing out the weaknesses and defects of U.S. society in a mocking and sometimes intolerable way." (263). Antonia Peacocke uses short parts of from different authors to shape her argument, agreeing with some and pointing fun at others.
It is interesting to note that this film almost paralleled to a point, the real life scandal of President Clinton and his threats of military action against Iraq; the film started production before the Lewinsky scandal, but opened up after it happened. To pull of the ‘war without a war’ idea, they turned to Hollywood; more specifically to Hollywood producer Stanley Motss to pull it off. So Motss and crew start planning and executing this fake war; they come up with slogans to support the war and the cause, recruit a singer to come up with a moving theme song (shades of Lee Greenwood? ), and even come up with actors to portray the needed parts. More importantly are the ‘leaks’ that are let out to the media; something that the media is more than willing to run with.
In today’s American society, we are seeing a shift in the way we consume the news; reading newspapers and religiously watching local TV news the way our elders did seem to have become ways of the past. Today, younger generations have almost countless methods to stay up-to-date with current information; some methods, like Twitter, are generated by public interest, while others allow the general public to look at news, especially that involving America’s most powerful and rich, in a satirical light. In this analysis I take a look at the latter, using Jon Stewart’s show on Comedy Central, The Daily Show. This show is an excellent example of alternative journalism commonly consumed today; although its motives are partially humor-based, its willingness to critique and interrogate our political and societal leadership takes advantage of the true freedoms allowed to us in our democracy. From the first minute of watching an episode of the Daily Show, it becomes abundantly clear that it is no ordinary news show; the host’s willingness to mock both the oddities in our society today, and, at times, even his own personal opinions, prove that there are no biases; rather, it shows the viewer that no one, including Jon Stewart himself, is perfect.
While this is happening, the audience hears an invisible announcer that states the date, followed by "from Comedy Central's world news headquarters in New York, this is The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.” The audience then sees Jon Stewart "scribbling" on a paper, followed by a close up of his face. This is a parody of how news channels always have big, flashy headings in the beginning of every news segment to catch your attention. Jon Stewart exaggerates it to a significant extent so that it makes those headings look ridiculous. The reference to New York mocks the authoritative power of New York-based news stations. The background of The Daily Show mirrors that of a standard news setting.
In Dan Wasserman’s cartoon that appeared in an issue of the Boston Globe in July of 2011, Obama is attempting to make things better, or “avoid default” while a Republican who is far away “misinterprets” what he says and states his feelings of everything being Obama’s fault. The cartoon portrays the use of symbolism, exaggeration, humor and caricature to convey the message of republicans blaming Obama for everything even when he tries to do right; Republicans don’t “hear” or listen to Obama. The cartoon most likely would create laughter from an audience due to the fact that there is no denying that this is true, but the facts were shown in a humorous way. The large crack in the ground as a way of showing everything falling apart demonstrates Wasserman’s use of symbolism because the crack represents America. The crack could also be a representation of how split republicans and Democrats are on their views.
We were stunned because up until that point we were allowed to do legitimate news and suddenly we were ordered from the top to carry propaganda to carry republican right winged propaganda.” It can be said that this is the point in which Fox News lost its integrity. In my experience in talking to conservative extremists, it seems they have adopted the antics of Fox News in that they belittle people who do not fully agree with their opinion. To put it simply, they have brainwashed their followers into believing that there is no other correct opinion to have. Former employees have become so fearful of the media giant that they have resorted to speaking out anonymously and ensuring their voices are disguised before coming forward to share their experiences. They have felt and continue to feel the impact of being essentially blacklisted in the industry because of their former employer.