Why Do Readers “Tag” Media Outfits? Drawdown To Cross River…BY AGBA JALINGO

In Breaking News, Civic Space, Opinion

Almost all front line independent mainstream media organizations in the West like CNN, BBC, Al Jazeera, Fox, NYT, Telegraph, Washington Post, AP, Reuters, MSN, RFI are all tagged “Western Media Propaganda” outfits or accused of leaning towards the Republicans or Democrats or Labor or Conservatives or the Lib Dems, by those who find issues with their reporting per time. Even Trump labeled most of them “Fake News” media.

The reason is that they perpetually keep the focus on the paramount interest of their countries and their editorial ideological leaning. Ironically, those who call them names are their most ardent followers, listeners, and readers.

The only other alternative to them is State-controlled media organizations from China, Russia, Iran among other fundamentalist homegrown extremists platforms. I don’t know if these name-calling folks are saying that we should abandon independent media reporting and rely on State-controlled media outfits and propaganda. God forbid!

Back home in Nigeria, Punch Newspaper has been called names, Channels TV has been called APC media, same with The Nation Newspaper, TVC and Max Fm (former radio continental) have been called Tinubu media, Arise and AIT have been dubbed PDP media. SaharaReporters has been labeled, PremiumTimes too has been labeled. There is none of them you mention that they will not have a tag for. Some persons have even gone as far as saying the entire Nigerian media is useless.

But be rest assured, once news breaks, these same people who tag the media organizations will immediately forget the tags and rush there to find out “the facts” of the breaking news. The question remains: Why are you so addicted to sources you claim to doubt so much?

There is no adequate answer to that question unless every media house is loved or hated based on the often-ness of reportage considered favorable or not favorable by sections of the society with interest. But ultimately, the media is needed by all and available to all when they are needed. And that has been the situation if you look closely.

The labeling is to see how they can emotionally blackmail the media to achieve their end. And the only media organizations that have never been tagged with a bias or leaning are the ones that are not making any impact or do not have any influence.

So when people tag a media outfit, it is a mere reflection of how they perceive part of what that organization churns. There is another section of the people who define events and hold a contrary opinion about the same outfit. It is the natural tendency of news consumers to behave following their perception of your output. There is nothing untoward about it. That shows that the outfit is in the center of the control of public opinion.

Drawdown to Cross River State and you will agree that it is the situation with CrossRiverWatch, the foremost investigative online media platform in the State, which is constantly on the tag list of the State’s ruling class and their apparatchiks and of those who themselves started blogs and failed woefully in attempting to run them or haven’t been able to recruit even one individual to join them and build a team.

Yours sincerely.

Citizen Agba Jalingo, Publisher of CrossRiverWatch and a rights activist, is a Cross Riverian and writes in from Lagos.

NB: Opinions expressed in this article are strictly attributable to the author, Agba Jalingo and do not represent the opinion of CrossRiverWatch or any other organization the author works for/with.

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