Fox News critics looking for ways to take down Murdoch press over UK hack scandal

James Fallows in the Atlantic calls this video “The Most Incredible Thing Fox News Has Ever Done”:

Or at least the most amazingly brazen I can think of at this moment.

Via Erik Wemple of the Washington Post, the simply unbelievable Fox and Friends segment below. It’s about the News of the World hacking scandal.

To the good: they treat hacking as a problem and scandal. To the incredible/bad: they present their (now closed) UK sister publication News of the World as a victim of the hacking problem, rather than as a perpetrator.


From Fallows text, i expected the video to contain a lie or gross misstatement or ridiculous argument or SOME-thing illegitimate. instead, the opinion made by the guest is so solid that the article doesnt even attempt to refute it. it just record-scratches (ie, abrupt stop) that the guest did something the Atlantic and the propagandistic haters at Newshounds didnt like due to their own bias, not Fox’s nor the guests. I’ve been wondering the same things this video says. someone may have broke the law in england and all i’ve been seeing online about it is a piranha frenzy of hopeful haters who are trying to spin it into a way to take down the rest of a multi billion dollar corporation. the video doesn’t pay off the articles claims. For one, it’s from Newshounds, which is more propagandistic than any Murdoch outlet could ever hope to be. The title Newshounds gave the upload of this video on youtube is 10 times more egregious than any of the videos content, reading: “Fox & Friends’ Jaw-Dropping Whitewash of News of the World Scandal”. To “whitewash” means to censor. Hint to the dishonest propagandizers at Newshounds: it is not possible to both whitewash a story and talk about its details.

Neither the Washington Post nor Fallows at the Atlantic nor the Newshounds bother to support their claims and explain why its not a legit point to ask why someone hacking into a bank as big as Citibank or the nation of China hacking into our countries computers is less of a concern than a tabloid in London hacking into a civilians phone to get a news scoop. Yet Fallows calls this the “most incredible thing Fox News has done”? This is the “most incredible (ever)” part:

Watch, if you can stand to. They roll out some expert, Bob Dilenschneider, to say how hacking is a big problem. It’s happened at the Pentagon. It’s happened at Citibank. It’s happened at the News of the World. When are we going to get serious about it?

HEY, WAIT A MINUTE!!! Citibank and the Pentagon were the hackees — the objects of hacking, by criminals or spies. Murdoch’s News of the World was the hacker — the perpetrator, the criminal-or-spy counterpart.

The Washington Post article that Fallows got this Newshound clip from describes the content in a more reasoned tone but makes the same change, saying:

Facile stuff there. If you’re only paying cursory attention, Dilenschneider sounds pretty reasonable. Of course, his attempt to suggest equivalency among Citicorp, Bank of America, and American Express falls victim to an inversion: Those entities were the victims of hacking; News Corp. is the alleged perpetrator of hacking. Not a good example of effective scandal suppression.

That is probably why the article and video contain no argument to support their claim that it is inappropriate to name other hacking scandals without reiterating that Newscorp is evil. condemning an argument with an opinion is not a legit condemnation of a news source. the article could have just as easily said “Hey wait a minute!! Citibank and the Pentagon are undeniably bigger and more important targets than a civillian crime victim. and a nation with an army the size of China hacking into our nations computers is undeniably a bigger scandal than one employee at a tabloid in England hacking into a persons phone”.

Its “evidence” like this about Fox News that makes it look more credible, not less. the headline says this is the most “incredible thing” the network has ever done… having a guest on their morning talk show who made a comment putting a hacking story into a larger context of inarguably more dangerous (and thus newsworthy) hacking stories gets the title of “most incredible”? dude… c’mon…

This video doesnt come close to shaking Fox News as a reputable source, is all im saying. im not helping defend any organization with less than acceptable morals and neither did the guest in this segment. he said if someone broke the law then thats terrible and actionable, as he should have. It takes a biased mind to blame Fox for running a short segment like this noting that the coverage from their competitors has been overblown.

If Rebekah Brooks is found guilty then she should get the same sentence any other conspirator to hack a private phone would get and if Rupert Murdoch knew about this then he needs to resign as chairman and face similar prosecution. im only defending the logic of the attack behind the video and adding that its totally legit to compare this to other scandals that caused a fifth of a media frenzy despite being vastly more alarming.

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