One of the most loathsome practices of our so-called “news media” is their insistence on playing the role of hall monitors against Free Speech.
The same people who spent four years clutching their pearls over President Trump’s mythical “threat” to the First Amendment have themselves become a very real threat to the First Amendment.
The coordinated effort to get Fox News off the air.
The embarrassing “troll through social media posts to find something objectionable and then ruin the person” beat.
Famous person or random nobody – it doesn’t matter – these intrepid “reporters” will search you out, expose your wrong-speak, then campaign to have you destroyed.
It really is unbelievable.
Well, yesterday independent journalist Glenn Greenwald took a blowtorch to these nasty little hall monitors in his column “The Journalistic Tattletale and Censorship Industry Suffers Several Well-Deserved Blows.”
It is seriously good. And I’m not saying that just because I despise these people with every fiber of my being and Greenwald rakes them over the coals.
Okay, that’s a large part of it.
Here’s just a few pull-quotes, but you’ll want to read the whole thing.
A new and rapidly growing journalistic “beat” has arisen over the last several years that can best be described as an unholy mix of junior high hall-monitor tattling and Stasi-like citizen surveillance. It is half adolescent and half malevolent. Its primary objectives are control, censorship, and the destruction of reputations for fun and power. Though its epicenter is the largest corporate media outlets, it is the very antithesis of journalism.
Major news outlets – both print and television – actually hire these “reporters” expressly to play hall monitors and tattletales. Rather than shoe-leather journalism, these guys troll sub-Reddit, 4Chan, Twitter, Facebook, you name it, all in search of people to ruin.
And Greenwald doesn’t disguise his loathing of those who practice this lazy, snotty style of “journalism.”
Oliver Darcy has built his CNN career by sitting around with Brian Stelter petulantly pointing to people breaking the rules on social media and demanding tech executives make the rule-breakers disappear. The little crew of tattletale millennials assembled by NBC — who refer to their twerpy work with the self-glorifying title of “working in the disinformation space”: as intrepid and hazardous as exposing corruption by repressive regimes or reporting from war zones — spend their dreary days scrolling through 4Chan boards to expose the offensive memes and bad words used by transgressive adolescents; they then pat themselves on the back for confronting dangerous power centers, even when it is nothing more trivial and bullying than doxxing the identities of powerless, obscure citizens.
The whole “Q-Anon is the most dangerous threat to the country” narrative was spawned by these internet hall monitors.
While most people couldn’t define Q-Anon if their lives depended on it, these hall monitors made it their mission to root out these “dangerous” nobodies and get them driven off social media.
These hall-monitor reporters are a major factor explaining why tech monopolies, which (for reasons of self-interest and ideology) never wanted the responsibility to censor, now do so with abandon and seemingly arbitrary blunt force: they are shamed by the world’s loudest media companies when they do not.
Can you believe these childish Nosy Parkers think behaving like junior high school tattletale hall monitors actually makes them serious journalists?
I hate people like this. I really do.
We’ve become a society of snitches. And the snitchiest among us work in the news media.
They don’t “hold the powerful to account.”
They’re not “brave firefighters running toward a story.”
They’re hall monitors, busybodies and tattletales.
Like I said the other day, the Campus Snowflake Culture hasn’t remained within the confines of universities. The busybody speech police that occupy our colleges have brought this tattletale cancel culture into the real world with them. It is metastasizing and spreading throughout major corporations, institutions, government, and the news media.
As Greenwald puts it:
But this is now the prevailing ethos in corporate journalism. They have insufficient talent or skill, and even less desire, to take on real power centers: the military-industrial complex, the CIA and FBI, the clandestine security state, Wall Street, Silicon Valley monopolies, the corrupted and lying corporate media outlets they serve. So settling on this penny-ante, trivial bullshit — tattling, hall monitoring, speech policing: all in the most anti-intellectual, adolescent and primitive ways — is all they have. It’s all they are. It’s why they have fully earned the contempt and distrust in which the public holds them.
I highly recommend you read the whole column.
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