Jay Rosen explains the dilemma:
What happens if one of the two campaigns for president consistently ignores or simply runs over the fact checkers in the press, choosing culture war on the checkers as a better option, and making direct attempts to de-legitimate not unfair or crappy stories but whole river systems of quality news, like, say, the New York Times... while the other campaign... doesn't do any of those things, consistently, even though it is hardly innocent when it comes to distortion and selective memory.
Such a scenario could happen: a wild imbalance in liberty-taking with verified fact, as an index of different paths to victory and different coalitions under assembly. How is that situation to be reported, especially if it becomes a pattern and reporting the pattern is likely to fuel it?
It's hard for consensus judgment to handle cases like that. Pressure builds to change them into more conventional cases with a "both sides" narrative. (Feel the relief! As with this report.) Now we're no longer fine. We have distortion toward a phony mean creeping in.
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