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Novelist says it is fiction that most news is fact, not opinion 5/30/08

Posted by Steve Boriss in FactVsOpinion.

Slate magazine is more impressed than I am with novelist Michael Crichton’s 15 year-old, right-for-the-wrong-reasons prediction that mass media would decline. But, I am tremendously impressed with how well this fiction writer can tell the difference between fiction and fact.

Take mainstream media’s claims of superiority for separating fact from opinion. He notes that just about any run-of-the-mill story that is framed has been branded with an opinion, e.g. ‘How much will Rev. Wright hurt Obama’s chances?’, ‘Is Hillary now looking toward 2012?’, and ‘How will McCain overcome the age argument?’ Also opinion, in his opinion, are all stories that are unsourced or have unnamed sources. And any story about what may, might, or could happen just happens to be opinion. Which has led me to form an opinion. Perhaps there’s no one better than a writer who makes stuff up to identify others who do the same. (H/T: Chris Bachelder)


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