Media Bias

All media is biased.

That’s the message I took away from watching a documentary called The Control Room last night.

This movie was made by Jehane Noujaim, who also made Startup.com. I lived through Startup.com. Our old offices are even a scene in the movie. So I know that Jehane tells the truth, as brutal as it may be at times.

The Control Room is about Al Jazeera’s coverage of the Iraq war.

It is amazing to see what went on in that war that the US media never talked about. The images that weren’t shown to us. The facts that were not disclosed to us.

But the big “aha moment” for me was a scene where a US reporter is interviewing a producer from Al Jazeera. Both were women. The US reporter asked why Al Jazeera would show pictures of Iraqis being maimed and killed. Wasn’t Al Jazeera biased against the US?, the reporter asked. Of course, the woman from Al Jazeera replied. But don’t you know that all media is biased, she said. And then she pointed out that the US media wasn’t showing the same pictures for the exact same reasons that Al Jazeera was showing them.

Different Channels, Different Truths. That’s the tag line of The Control Room. And it is so true.