Politics, Business Guides Mainstream Media

Mainstream media coverage of national and international affairs is guided by the political and economic agenda of the United States and Europe, experts told Sputnik.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Nicolas Kazarian, a political analyst and French Institute for International and Strategic Affairs (IRIS) associate research fellow, says the poll demonstrates that news organizations in these countries “are medias of opinion.”

“This only fact explains that the treatment of news topics not only on an interior level, but also in international affairs, depends on the angle used,” the expert stressed.

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Kazarian added that by giving “the impression of taking sides” in covering international affairs, Western media does not appear to be objective.

“Being media of influence often rhymes with losing independence and freedom,” the IRIS expert noted, adding that the appearance of media subjectivity undermines their stated goal of informing the public in a fair and balanced way.

Texas Tech University Journalism and Electronic Media professor Lyombe Eko suggests that news organizations are motivated not only politically, but economically via parent companies.

“In the United States, the media are private entities that protect the economic and political interests of their owners,” he stressed.

The professor said that, as a consequence, news consumers have recently begun to substitute traditional media with alternative nontraditional media sources that are widely accessible on the Internet.

“The media are not objective, they have never been objective, no matter which country you look at,” Eko underscored.

That subjectivity is exemplified in Sweden, says University of Gothenburg Faculty of Education communication officer Torsten Arpi.

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“Swedish media is dominated by liberal and conservative owners, and that influences what and how international affairs are reported,” Arpi stressed.

The educational marketing expert emphasized that business and political dominance can be identified “all over” European and US mainstream media organizations.

A new poll conducted by ICM Research exclusively for Sputnik and published Tuesday revealed that 56 percent of European and US residents believe mainstream media in their countries is influenced by politicians and big business.

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