Media fluff

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Media fluff (or media padding) is the name given to the phenomenon among many news organisations of giving disproportionate air-time (or in the case of newspapers, column space) to news stories that are usually regarded as trivial or inconsequential. Media fluff is most prevalent among 24-hour news television channels, that often find themselves struggling to to fill air-time in a competitive "infotainment" market.

DougPD, a libertarian at Nolan Chart, describes[1] media fluff: "The MSM keeps the sheeple of this country busy with nonsense, trash 'news' so that we might not see through the veil of truth."

The concept of media fluff is explored in the book It's Not News It's Fark: How Mass Media Tries to Pass Off Crap as News[2], in which author Drew Curtis describes specific patterns in news reporting - generally among television news.

Sections of the book showcase examples of media fluff, including:

  • Media Fearmongering, whereby "scare stories" are used to attract an audience's attention
  • Unpaid Placement Masquerading as Actual Article, in which news stories advertise a product or organization
  • Seasonal Articles, which focus on recurring articles published the same time every year
  • Media Fatigue refers to stories examined and exhausted past their relevance

References

  1. http://www.nolanchart.com/article520.html
  2. http://www.fark.com/2007/book/
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