“Working Hard for the Truth”

As a follow up to the last post (and to further demonstrate the ways we we think about and value “truth” in communication), check out this short editorial by a news anchor from KSBW in Monterey, CA. My guess is that some of his opinions about truth are very familiar. For example:

  • he argues that “professional journalists truly do try to do their best each day to report in an unbiased fashion” and they “work very hard to take disciplined steps to be as objective as possible”
  • he “testifies” to the FACT of the news because testify “the stories we report are overseen by reporters, editors, and news managers who do their best to check and counter check what we report” for truth
  • he attacks a popular writer for her belief that the “pursuit of ‘truth’ cannot be objective or neutral” and in defense of his news channel’s truth (and taking another swipe at so-called biased news) he says, “We’ll leave the opinionated news to some activist weekly newspapers, cable news outfits, and the internet.”

All of these statements represent a “standard view of communication” or “transmission model” that values clear, unbiased, noise-free, sending of true or correct messages … they are things we’ve heard before and maybe even things we’ve said ourselves. As the semester continues we’re going to challenge these ways of thinking and talking about truth.

For now, you might want to write about and discuss on your team blog why you agree or disagree with the way Plato wants us to think about communication, rhetoric, and “Truth.”  Or why you agree or disagree with Isocrates that everything we have starts with communication (logos). Feel free to use the blog posts to disagree with things we’re talking about in class or to offer counter-arguments about course ideas. We can learn a lot more if we work through some disagreements.


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