Trash Media: The Tabloidization of the News
Once upon a time sleaze stories were associated with the likes of the National Enquirer. They would confront you while you were in line at supermarket checkout counters. Now, sexcapades, sensationalism and infotainment are pervasive. Step right up, it’s showtime! Media circuses feature such big-time acts as Amy and Joey, Nancy and Tonya and of course O.J. The ringmasters are network anchors and talk show hosts. They measure guilt, innocence and moral worth. Market share, ratings and profits are the engines that drive the trend toward tabloid journalism.
Interview by David Barsamian.
Recorded at the Z Media Institute.
Barbara Ehrenreich is a social critic, journalist, and activist. She received a PhD in cell biology from Rockefeller University. In the 1970s, she was involved with the nascent women’s health movement. After publishing an article in Ms. magazine, she became a regular columnist there and with Mother Jones. She is the author of numerous books including such bestsellers as Nickel and Dimed, Bait and Switch, This Land is Their Land and Bright-Sided. In 2012 she founded the Economic Hardship Reporting Project, a website designed to place the crisis of poverty and economic insecurity at the center of the national political conversation.