Prediction #2: Non-Partisan and Foreign Media Sources Grow in Popularity
In the future, US public distrust of mass media accuracy will lead to a paradigm shift. Social media will take over as the main source of breaking news. I also believe that foreign and non-partisan media outlets will get more attention form the US public for analysis and discussion on said news (reported by social media.) Publicly funded PBS, though favored heavily by liberal viewers, is in fact non-partisan in views. PBS provides only analysis, no spin or agenda. They simply report the story as it happened. The public, after hearing of the news on twitter or Facebook, will turn to a source akin to PBS to hear the whole story. No spin, or political BS in-between.
A trend in the appreciation of foreign and non-partisan media outlets has already begun. Back in January (2013), former US Vice-President Al Gore sold his station, Current TV, to Middle-East based news firm Al-Jazeera. Effectively, this brought Al-Jazeera to many US public television sets (in place of Current.) At the time, Gore faced much criticism and hate from Republicans and Liberals alike. However, a large group of the US public was excited. Al-Jazeera is highly respected worldwide as being a source of non-partisan and accurate news reporting. They are regarded as one of the best. When Gore sold his Current TV, he effectively introduced factual reporting to the United States.
I believe that, given time, the US public will gain a respect for Al-Jazeera and what they provide in regards to factual news reporting. In addition, I think that the BBC will get more attention in the near future. BBC America was founded a few years ago, and it mostly plays sitcoms and special interest shows. I believe that, if the BBC were to begin a US focused news segment, they would be very successful. I say this, because I use BBC as my main source of news. It is British, but they report on worldwide issues. From what I have seen in their reporting, I am led to believe that a US focused segment could truly change the public’s outlook on mass media trust.
NPR and PBS, I must admit, are rather dry and boring to listen to or watch. However, they are accurate and factual, with no spin. That said, perhaps boring and drab is the way news reporting to the public is supposed to be? Personally, I think that PBS and NPR could do well by an increased social media usage. They need to get listeners/viewers involved in the discussion. Find out the public’s reaction to the actual story, not the station’s spin of that story, and you have laid the groundwork for a trusting media-public relationship.