When you google the words “Mainstream Media,” you will be greeted immediately with this definition from Wikipedia: Mainstream media (MSM) is mass media reflective of prevailing currents of thought, influence, or activity. It may be contrasted with alternative media which may contain content discordant with prevailing views.
If you are a Filipino, you mostly get your news from GMA Network, ABS-CBN, TV 5, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Manila Bulletin and Philippine Star. In the US, you have American Broadcasting Company (ABC), Cable News Network (CNN), Fox News, Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), The New York Times, The Washington Post, etc. The British have The Sun, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail and The Guardian for papers and BBC for television.
I usually read the British online websites when it comes to world news. They usually have the same slant when it comes to geopolitics, although I can only stomach The Independent when reading articles word for word. My favorite site is The Guardian, but not because of their kind of reporting. Historically, The Guardian is a left-wing newspaper. At least, it is definitely left of the Daily Telegraph. But when I started perusing it, I discovered that their readers are the real left-wingers.
My favorite nook is the comment section; more popularly known as CiF (Comment is Free). I was brought into this world by my frustration of the online forums in other news sites. In CiF, I get a blast of contrary people. The things you read below the line are a complete contrast to the article. It is incredible to find people with differing views, who don’t merely sprout off what their favorite mouthpiece fed them. But it is best to be careful too. It is infested with conspiracy theorists. Some are obvious shills, whether they are employed by the Pentagon or the Kremlin, although they are a joy to read if you’re bored. Who wouldn’t find it hilarious when a paid troll calls out another paid troll?
Setting aside all the trolling, the commenters there are more informed than most. By more informed I meant that they read more than one source of news and always seem to see through the bullshit of most mainstream media. They share alternative sources to current events. I also read Animal Farm and 1984 because I wanted to learn all about the “secret codes” they use in the comment threads. Orwellian, double speak, ministry of truth, thought crime. Some are more equal than others. Four legs good, two legs even better. The sheep and the pigs.
All thanks to them I was not convinced and hoodwinked to believe that Venezuela is a hellhole just because they have toilet paper “crisis”, Greeks are a bunch of lazy people, those pesky Russians are out to get Europe, all Muslims are terrorists and Vladimir Putin eats babies for breakfast.
I believe getting instant feedback is one of the perks of accessing news online. Long ago, any news outlet can spit anything without fear of prompt repercussions. Today readers can tear apart a bias article below the line, albeit with the limitations of community guidelines where some comments may be deemed inappropriate.
Note: It took me several months to finally update this category. I have a few drafts lined up but I can’t make up my mind whether to publish them or keep on revising them. That is the very reason why I hate planning things. This one has been sitting on my drafts folder for five months. I hope I will be more punctual for the next update. 🙂