Pantagraph and Social media

By: Diane Benjamin

Yesterday the Pantagraph printed an editorial called:

Commentary: Social media is hurting America, and 2019 is the year we need to do something about it

It was supposedly from the Dallas Morning News with no names attached.  Read it here if you missed it:

Yes, they claim social media is hurting America.

Since I use many social media sites, I find people fall into 4 categories:

  1. People who lean far left
  2. People who lean far right
  3. People who observe and want to be informed but rarely state an opinion
  4. People who NEVER want to see politics discussed (the most dangerous of the four)

Before social media it was difficult to say where people stood on issues.  Politicians could lie and change their message to fit whatever crowd they were in front of.  Now they can’t because it is very easy to find video of them with the opposite position.  The media won’t call out “their” side, social media does.

Before social media facts were whatever the media said they were.  Now media has lost much of their credibility because what they do report and FAIL to report.  The best example on a national level is the Mueller investigation and all the people who have not been prosecuted because they aren’t on the Trump side of the investigation.  The investigation was never about truth, from the start it was “Get Trump”.  Don’t bother posting hate comments here, my site and I will delete them.

Yes, truth doesn’t matter to some people – see point 1 above.

Things social media exposed that media hasn’t:

  • Planned Parenthood selling baby body parts
  • Scandals in the Catholic Church
  • Government spending on stupid things like shrimp on a treadmill
  • Salaries and pensions of government employees
  • Coliseum theft
  • Local government spending
  • What really happens at government meetings

The list is endless and nationally there are many more things exposed by people other than those who call themselves media.  America is better without places for those in power to hide, social media makes that possible.

Maybe the local issues are why the Pantagraph printed the rant.  It’s difficult to see your readers decrease while social media increases.

The editorial thinks:   “We know that social media has become the preferred platform autocracies use to control their populaces and undermine democracy.” 

Now they are calling you stupid.  People are much smarter than the media gives them credit for.  They don’t need a four-year journalism degree to smell rot in reporting.  Partisan opinion is what much of media does report while calling it news.

People need news from lots of sources, there are a ton of them on social media.  People could do a better job of not sharing information from sites they have never heard of.  There are satirical sites that are funny, but not the truth.  I’ve seen people share them as truth, I remember once I was guilty of that.

Google is now hiding sites.  Facebook is censoring stories their left-wing investigators don’t want people to see.  Twitter has banned people for no valid reason.  If the purpose of these sites is to spread information and allow debate they are failing.  Others will eventually replace them, they are destroying themselves.

Government has no place regulating speech.  Calls for them to intervene because foreign governments might try to spread propaganda violates the first amendment and once again calls you stupid for believing un-sourced stories.  Hillary didn’t lose because of Russia.

If the media wasn’t left-wing social media news wouldn’t be as big as it is.  Truth matters, the media isn’t providing it.  Yes, the people are smart enough to see that.

I bet the British Press did the same editorials when Thomas Paine printed Common Sense.  Hopefully you know how that turned out.

Social Media isn’t hurting America, it’s preserving it.











9 thoughts on “Pantagraph and Social media

  1. Yes social media is allowing the people to speak and to talk back to those who want to silence them. The genie is out of the bottle and he is not going back in. Unless you adopt a completely authoritarian state (like China) – the age of information is here to stay. And for all of those who are appalled by the president tweeting take it from me (I was an early adopter and have taught twitter to business people) #1 President Trump is a master level user of Twitter #2 He uses twitter to directly communicate with his supporters (with what he really thinks) very much like the fireside chats of FDR. #3 President Trump is a master level persuader and constantly controls the conversation with his tweets #4 People who dislike his tweeting don’t understand Twitter or its power.

    I go to Twitter to see from the people I follow what is going on and what is being talked about everyday. I have been doing this since 2009. The threat that social media poses is a threat to the power of the establishment and the establishment media. Knowledge and information are power. They want to control what you know and what you see while they carefully control their narrative. Try as they might, social media (in many changing forms) is not going away.

  2. It is amusing to me that Mayor Koos recently wanted to hire someone to counter the “horrible” social media misinformation that is “out there”. I am not sure if he has hired anyone yet? In case the newly hired person is reading this and they want to know where to start… Here is where you should start in your work defending Mayor Koos and his buddies:

    Hey this worked for Adolf Hitler and it can work for Mayor Koos!

  3. Social media is exactly that social. One would and should expect a bias in what is written….no different from when you talk to a friend. You have an opinion and that is the way it should be.
    Now to the trashograph—-Pantagraph and for that matter most all of the so called “professional media”.
    It is simple. At one time we expected to be able to read a news area of such and get just the facts and little to no bias. They had a special area to spew their biased opinion. It was called the editorial page. Now the whole paper, newscast or what have you is the editorial page. 100% bias 100% of the time.
    As pointed out, if it were not for social media a lot of REAL problems would go unanswered. Do you think the Coliseum fiasco would have gotten noticed if it were not first brought up on social media? The local media would have NEVER brought it up. Often when they finally get around to bringing it up is usually theft of the originator in social media’s work without attribution. (Can we say Edith?) The role of investigator has disappeared.
    Instead of having watchdogs in the so called professional media that would report the news without bias we have lapdogs who jump the whims of their master. One big recently moved in to kennel is located in downtown Bloomington called the Pantagraph.
    People like the Pantagraph being called the 4th estate only means the whole estate at best is nothing more than an outhouse where what one leaves behind actually has more value than the words they write.

  4. Good points Lawrence! I’ve lived 50+ years WITHOUT social media, and STILL doing well without it. I believe I have better things to do then look at Facemug or tweet all the time, BUT, I do have good “situational awareness” which allows me to SEE and OBSERVE what is going on! Yes, I watch the news, and quit the local rag. I read NON FICTION and pay attention to what’s going on in the world. And about the ONLY “social media I share is an occasional cartoon that I find funny, of which anymore, they cut so many of the comics down they don’t make sense.
    And as for social media, read it, interpret it, and remember, it worked pretty good for ole Hitler and it STILL works for China, and as for Trump. YES! He’s a JEDI MASTER when it comes to tweet, as he is NOT a negotiator. which makes him unpopular with the democrats who are USED to getting their way, and IF they don’t , they whine and yell “FOUL” which doesn’t work on Donald. Probably WHY other world leaders (except for Putin) don’t like him also He DON’t put up with BS, and he calls them as he sees them. And IF you think Putin don’t see that in him, then Putin would have gotten where HE is… Putin wouldn’t take Hillary to lunch, he’d HAVE her for lunch..

  5. Social media has created new industries and brands while destroying institutional players. It’s progress. Like it or not its reality. The market has spoken. (Like most of you, I suspect, I see this as both good and bad…but regardless, its reality.) The Pantagraph yearns for the day when buying ink by the barrel means yours is the voice that counts, you’re the bellwether, the alpha if you will. They want to return to a bygone era where centralized institutions like newspapers controlled what is said and what is not said. Social media and other non-traditional media are a threat to the Pantagraph, as well as its advertising revenue. When businesses realize they’re wasting money advertising in the newspaper its game over. The Pantagraph has every reason to attack or join the attack on social media.

  6. Wait…isn’t the Slantigraph on Facebook and Twitter? This reprint seems like a sad attempt to make those who speak the truth feel shame. It’s disgusting really.

    1. Yes, they are on Twitter and Facebook. But as you might imagine, they have really no clue about how to use either platforms. You see they (and many more companies and institutions here) believe that both platforms are just a new way to advertise and get the word out about what they are up to. The name of the game in social media is engagement. It is a conversation and it involves real people who need to be respected and communicated with. The Pantagraph just tweets out it’s latest article… that’s it. Twitter is an advertising platform for them. They have no idea what to do with Twitter or its real power to engage and communicate.

      Being involved with social media (especially Twitter for example) requires transparency and honesty. Yes you need to tell the truth and not hide things. Why? Because people can call you out publicly on Twitter. We can question them. We can embarrass them. We can question what they post. And if they are spreading lies, BS or establishment talking points… they can be called out publicly for their actions. This is why they don’t like it. It is no longer a one way street with them in charge of telling us what they want us to know. We can tweet our information/articles that prove they are spreading lies, BS or establishment talking points. We can challenge the narrative that they are trying to move into the public consciousness.

      So the world has changed. The media here, the liberal elites and city governments want to control what we see, read and hear. This is why they want to control social media. They want to control social media because they want to control us.

  7. You make a lot of good points and are a smart woman. That’s why it’s so hard to understand how you got on the Cadena bus.

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