FEATURING ROBERT MCCHESNEY – The fight between the US news media and Donald Trump that was on full display at the recent President elect’s press conference has been a long time coming. Even before he ran for President Trump assailed the media. But during his candidacy and after his November win, that antagonism has been on full display. Trump has blamed the media both reporting on his statements and actions, and not reporting on them. He has hinted that he may remove press access to the White House and singled out specific media outlets like CNN and Buzzfeed.
But the media are not entirely innocent. For too long mainstream corporate media outlets have enjoyed cozy access to the halls of power. Their business model has been based on advertising revenues that benefit from sensationalist news – a model that many have co-opted and distorted into so-called fake news outlets.
Will the Trump Presidency prompt American news media to resume its forgotten tradition of being an adversarial force to power?
Robert McChesney, Professor Department of Communication at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, longtime expert on media reform, co-founder of the group Free Press, and author of a number of books including Digital Disconnect: How Capitalism Is Turning the Internet Against Democracy.