Horrors! We can’t have that, now, can we? Why — people might start questioning the consensus, and then where would we be?
Our Norwegian correspondent The Observer has translated an article about this disturbing trend. The translator includes this note:
This article fits in nicely with the ‘Radio Free Norway’ post that you published yesterday.
Professor Frank Aarebrot, who is mentioned in this article, testified in ‘Circus Breivik’ the other day. In his testimony he adamantly claimed that the fact that Norwegian journalists are mostly left-wing have absolutely no bearing whatsoever on the way news is presented in Norway. And it certainly, according to the good professor, doesn’t mean that the political left in Norway receives preferential treatment.
However, in this article he does express concern that the lamestream media in Scandinavia seem to be losing their grip on the news monopoly.
Also notice that the journalists themselves get their information mainly from… other journalists! They don’t go outside the consensus, either. Big surprise there!
Here’s the translated article from Nordiske Mediedager (Nordic Media Festival):
Journalists lose their grip on the net
Large sections of Scandinavian media users prefer websites that aren’t edited by journalists.
“Disturbing,” says Professor Frank Aarebrot.
Earlier in May, Professor Aarebrot presented the unique Scandinavian media survey conducted by Respons Analyse for the Nordic Media Festival (NMD).
According to the survey approximately a third of media users in Denmark, Sweden and Norway answered that they prefer “other websites” rather than those that are edited and published by the media when asked to clarify what type of websites best met their interests.
“This means that they sidestep the journalistic link. It is a development that I find rather troublesome, and it is a development which I believe ought to be debated. We find that more or less confused people seek out internet forums and blogs which are not subjected to journalistic quality control and source verification in order to corroborate their world views,” says Professor Frank Aarebrot of the University of Bergen.
A similar survey of Scandinavian journalists shows that journalists still prefer traditional media controlled websites.
“I have to admit that I would feel more at ease if the conclusion had been that journalists were the most avid users of other websites. After all it is their job to seek out and estimate the quality of information, and this invariably means that they have to look for information on ‘amateur’ websites,” Professor Aarebrot says.
Least left wing in Norway
The media survey has been conducted since 1999 by the Nordic Media Festival. This year, for the first time, it was conducted in all three Scandinavian countries. Approximately 4000 journalists and members of the public were asked nearly 50 questions about media habits, media quality, relevance and trust in the media.
Professor Aarebrot could reveal big disparities between the Scandinavian nations, not just among the general population but also among journalists.
The traditional “journalists’ parliament” this time also included all the Scandinavian countries. The survey shows that journalists in all three Scandinavian nations are left-wing, but to a greater extent in Sweden and Denmark than in Norway.
In Norway SV (socialistic Left), AP (Labour) and Venstre (the Liberals) are heavily favoured by journalists. While in Sweden there is a strong overrepresentation of journalists who vote for Vänsterpartiet (The Left Party) and Miljøpartiet (The Green Party). In Denmark Radikale Venstre (the Radical Left), a traditional centre party which is a member of the red-green coalition government is the big winner among journalists.
The Scandinavian Media Survey is conducted by Respons Analyse A/S. The survey was carried out between February 16 and March 2, 2012. Approximately 600 journalists and 800 members of the public in each of the three Scandinavian countries participated in the survey.