by Denyse O'Leary
When assessing media coverage of the intelligent design controversy, the first thing you should do is forget what defenders of legacy mainstream media say about their media.
You've already heard it all anyway: "We're objective." "We're not biased." "We only report the facts." Et cetera.
Not only isn't that true, but it couldn't possibly be true, as I will explain below. And it wouldn't be a good thing if it were true.
Modern media grew up self-consciously aware of their key role in promoting materialist ideas. You know the sort of thing: "Science has shown/research has demonstrated/studies have shown" .. what? The Big Bazooms theory of human evolution? The fact that it is completely ridiculous would make no impact on them.
Due to the rise of citizen-directed, Internet-based, new media, they currently face a crisis of sinking readership and advertising revenues.
They may respond by trying to keep control over who defines what is news and who reports it. In that case, citizen-directed media - the sort that most of the intelligent design community uses now - might have to fight for their existence.
Having given some thought to these matters, I offer some reflections and recommendations:
Part: 1: Here is what happened up to about 2000: Believing that materialism is the truth, many journalists assume that their role is to promote materialism at the expense of traditional, spiritually oriented ideas about human nature.
Part 2: Now, what changed after 2000? New findings that don't support materialism became common, and so did new media that bypass old media. Old media contemplate restrictions on new media.
Part 3: What forms could restrictions on new media take? (Basically, any form that could possibly slow them down, but some are discussed here.)
Part 4: Recommendations for the next decade. For example, "Start new media now, before you need a licence. (When new laws are introduced, people who are already key players on the scene are usually "grandfathered.")"
Next: Part 1: Here is what happened up to about 2000:
Toronto-based Canadian journalist Denyse O'Leary (www.designorchance.com) is the author of the multiple award-winning By Design or by Chance? (Augsburg Fortress 2004), an overview of the intelligent design controversy. She was named CBA Canada's Recommended Author of the Year in 2005 and is co-author, with Montreal neuroscientist Mario Beauregard, of The Spiritual Brain: A neuroscientist's case for the existence of the soul (Harper 2007).
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