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The reason for choosing this article is because the meddling of US elections by Russia has been a contentious issue in the US. It is an important news item in which journalists should not rush into conclusions owing to the fact that investigations are still underway.
The information found in the news by New York Times is subjective, misleading and contains incorrect information. The story reports that at least 3000 Facebook advertisements which were purchased using fake accounts were traceable to sources in Russia, and that they generated more than $100,000 with regards to advertisement revenue (Shane and Goel).
The authors probably presented the topic to shed more light on Facebook selling advertisements to fake companies. They intended to show that Facebook generated a lot from selling their user’s data, albeit they missed the point against the backdrop of haphazard research.
In real sense, Facebook’s revenue from advertisement in 2017 was 39 billion US dollars, implying that it generated about $100,000 from the same per day (www.statista.com). The real information on Facebook’s advertisement revenue is also backed up by Columbia Journalism Review (Watts and Rothschild). $100,000 would imply that only 0.1 % of the adverts were advertisement revenue. As such, The New York Times delivered misleading information to the public. Moreover, the investigation on Facebook and fake news is not yet complete (Stewart). Additionally, the source where the journalist derived the news from was informal as it had not been made official. The post had been made on Facebook, a social platform where posts are erasable and by an employee, as opposed to being made official to authorities. Moreover, the information had not been verified by investigators and was suspicious because it was coming from the accused. The authors were trying to reach Facebook users whose data was suspected to have been manipulated. They were trying to express that the magnitude of the incident was high. In a nutshell, they are trying to show that the Facebook data breach case was more intense than people thought.
News Item 2
I chose the News item “US Denying Passports to Americans along the Border” because it is an international issue which has been covered by several journalists. It is also a concern of significance under investigation in which several human rights activists are involved.
The News item lacks objectivity because it is inclined to one side. The author only questioned the side which was affected by immigration and did not fully investigate the story from the government’s view or records. Any claim by the government is dismissed as false based on what immigration attorney’s and immigrants say (Sieff). The author claims that some citizens were being illegally jailed. The information is misleading because there is neither statistics nor sources of information provided of the number of people being jailed. Further proof of the false news is that the item had been edited and the editor provides his comments. The editor even acknowledges the misleading claims and makes a correction on their initial contention that the ordeal began only after the Obama era (Sieff).
The author probably wanted to critique the Trump administration for ethnic discrimination. His intention was to show that Hispanic Americans are being denied citizenship in their own country. The main audience of the article is the US government. The author intends to show the authorities that what they are doing is illegal. Additionally, he intends to express his “findings” to American citizens, implying to point out the government’s failures.
While a lot of information in the media is true, some could be misleading and bias. The study finds out that two articles from the Washington Post and New York Times respectively are misleading, bias and contains false information. The news items are significant because they touch on contentious issues in the government and which affect the public, both of which are still under investigation. The authors should have been neutral in investigating unconcluded cases. For example, one should not claim that the American government is blocking citizens from entering the country. Instead, they should have been more neutral by using the word “possibly” in their heading and claims. Additionally, they should have balanced the government’s claims and the immigrant’s contentions. Instead, they leaned on the immigrants’ side. New York Times should have made investigations from multiple sources instead of relying on a suspect’s Facebook claim.
Shane, Scott and Vindu Goel. facebook-russian-political-ads. 06 September 2017. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/06/technology/facebook-russian-political-ads.html. 15 October 2018.
Sieff, Kevin. the_americas/us-is-denying-passports-to-americans-along-the-border-throwing-their-citizenship-into-question. 13 September 2018. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/us-is-denying-passports-to-americans-along-the-border-throwing-their-citizenship-into-question/2018/08/29/1d630e84-a0da-11e8-a3dd-2a1991f075d5_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.0dcb62940d15. 15 October 2018.
Stewart, Emily. facebook-mark-zuckerberg-congress-testimony-regulation. 10 April 2018. https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/4/10/17208322/facebook-mark-zuckerberg-congress-testimony-regulation. 15 October 2018.
Watts, Duncan J. and David M Rothschild. fake-news-media-election-trump. 05 December 2017. https://www.cjr.org/analysis/fake-news-media-election-trump.php. 15 October 2018.
www.statista.com. facebooks-advertising-revenue-worldwide. 2017. https://www.statista.com/statistics/271258/facebooks-advertising-revenue-worldwide/. 15 October 2018.
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