By Harsha Man Maharjan
On 16 september I got chance to watch Robert Greenwald‘s documentary Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism. So far as I know this documentary is unavailable in Nepali market.
Michael Moore’s documentary, Fahrenheit 9/11 that came in same year, 2004, is easy to find in different video parlors here. I must thank Saphala for providing me the documentary. Recently she returned from the US. And she brought it into Nepal.
It was BBC TV’s program Talking Movies that informed me about the documentary. I wanted to watch it on the same day.
Talking Movies informed me that that the documentary unveils one-sided news of Fox news channel. It opposed Clinton government and supported Bush government. In the documentary, Greenwald and his team have found certain techniques that Fox TV uses like conservative experts.
Other way is to dominate and humiliate speakers. I have seen no news and talk host in Nepal who humiliate their speakers. But it is the rule in Fox TV. In one program Bill O'Reilly, a host demoralized and bullied Jeremy Glick a young man whose father was killed in the attack on 9/11. Bill O'Reilly shows anger on Glick‘s anti-war sentiment.
It is said that “Fair and Balance” is the motto of Fox tv. What this documentary shows through its own footage is this is wrong.
Formers media workers of Fox TV and media critiques speak about Fox‘s biased reporting in the documentary. The memo of news editorial chief, John Moody which he gave to his employees shows the true color Fox TV.
In Nepalese context it is difficult to find this kind of corporate control in media. But we have government-owned media supporting views of Minister of Communication and Information, and partisan media blindly support particular political parties and their fractions.
The documentary urges viewers to use different news sources and come at own conclusion. It also requests to complain at FCC if people think media are presenting biased news. Nepalese also need to do same thing.
Beware of media. Coz media power is a political power as Ben Bagdikian says. And power corrupts us.