On Feb. 24, several media outlets (including The New York Times and Los Angeles Times) were barred from a press briefing at the White House. The move came as President Donald Trump and his staff continue to call out the media for their reporting on the administration.
"Many of these groups are part of large media corporations that have their own agenda," Trump told CPAC during a speech to the conference that same day, notes Vox. "And it's not your agenda and it's not the country's agenda, it's their own agenda. They have a professional obligation as members of the press to report honestly, but as you saw throughout the entire campaign and even now, the fake news doesn't tell the truth."
Now, an analysis by Media Tenor, an independent media research firm, has taken a look at the reports done by NBC and CBS for their evening news, and found that only 3 percent are positive, notes The Hill.
Furthermore, the firm found that 43 percent of the reports on "NBC Nightly News" and "CBS Evening News," between Jan. 20 and Feb. 17 portrayed Trump negatively, and the remaining 54 percent of reports were neutral.
The analysis also looked at Fox News’s "Special Report" for the same period and found that 25 percent of the reports on Trump were considered negative, 12 percent were positive, and the remaining 63 percent were deemed neutral.
"Don’t misunderstand what's going on with that rhetoric and with today's action banning various media outlets, including CNN, The New York Times," said CNN anchor Jake Tapper, notes Democracy Now!. "This White House does not seem to respect the idea of accountability. This White House does not seem to value an independent press. There is a word for that line of thinking. The word is 'un-American.'"
However, Steve Bannon, Trump's Chief Strategist and former head of Breitbart News, also portrayed the media as misinformed during a speech at CPAC on Feb. 23.
"If you look at ... the opposition party and how they portrayed the campaign, how they portrayed the transition and now they're portraying the administration, it's always wrong," Bannon said. "[What the] mainstream media or opposition party never caught, is that if you want to see the Trump agenda, it's very simple. It was all in the speeches. ... They're corporatist, globalist media that are adamantly opposed -- adamantly opposed to a economic nationalist agenda like Donald Trump has."
Robert Mahoney, deputy executive director of the Committee to Protect Journalists, commented to Democracy Now! about Bannon's comments:
Yeah. I mean, it's all laid out for you, that it's painting the media as the opposition The media is not the opposition. The press is the fourth estate. It has a very clear role to play in any democracy. By calling it the opposition, again, you are inoculating yourself, I believe, against future criticism, for when things start to go wrong and the press is digging and doing its job. You will be able to dismiss it as biased and politically affiliated. This sends a very, very dangerous message, and journalists are right to stand up to this at this point and say, "We won't accept this. We are not the opposition. We're doing our jobs."