Saying something does not make it true

Just a quick note in response to Robert Goodrich’s letter (Herald, July 9) defending Fox News as “the only reliable, accurate television news source, which always polls nationally highest in trustworthy reporting.” While it seems to be true that Fox News can claim to have the largest number of viewers compared to other “news” programs, it is wishful thinking that Fox News has ever received high marks for accurate, reliable or even trustworthy reporting. Goodrich should cite his references when making such dubious claims.

Here’s a finding worth mentioning: A study by Farleigh Dickinson University has concluded that people who only watch Fox News are less informed than all other news consumers (http://publicmind.fdu.edu/2011/knowless/). In fact, it seems that Fox News viewers are less informed than people who don’t watch any news at all. It might be tempting to scoff and write off these findings with the objection that universities are a bastion of liberal/socialist thinking with an agenda of undermining conservative dogma.

Unfortunately, an anti-intellectual mindset is not persuasive when faced with a national poll which controlled for factors such as partisanship (MSNBC viewers also scored poorly). Further analysis of the study is available at The Poynter Institute’s website. Goodrich should remember that just because someone says it, doesn’t make it true.

Gordon Henriksen

Durango

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