(cross-posted at kickin it with cg and motley moose)

Over the weekend as total chaos broke out in Iran one wouldn't have known anything about it if they weren't on the tubes. As E.D Kain writes,

if I wasn't online, an avid blogger and reader of blogs, and if I didn't frequent the New York Times, I wouldn't know a damn thing about the phenomenon in Iran.  It would feel like just any other story from the "crazy Middle East." I wouldn't have seen images of the streets of green-clad protestors.  I wouldn't have seen the beatings or the fires or read the twitter feeds or the first hand accounts.  I wouldn't have seen the youtube videos.  And lest it be forgotten, the news most people receive if they receive any at all is from their televisions.

This utter and complete failure of the MSM did not escape those of us connected as we literally watched the horrors and chaos coming from Iran right before our eyes.

Twitter users were posting "#CNNfail" on thousands of tweets Saturday night saying that their coverage of important news like the Iranian elections were downplayed by the cable network.
Here are some of those tweets:

clickmomukhamo: OMG! Major developments in Iran yet CNN isn't breaking into Larry King who's interviewing some bikers! #cnnfail

lifeonqueen: CNN is screwing the pooch on this one - top story on web is Six Flags bankruptcy not Iran. Way to miss history CNN #CNNfail

geoffeighinger: RT @Elektracutie They should quit the news and just do travel brochures. #cnnfail

ivanlasso: RT @dabloguiman: COVER IRAN NOW!!!! @CNN @CNNbrk @CNNWORLD #iranelection #CNNFAIL pls RT

Many American Twitter users praised British and other international news outlets for covering the Iranian election aftermath of riots and civil unrest. The "#cnnfail" tag was the third most tweeted topic on the microblogging network Saturday night. The "#iremember" tag and "#Iranelections" tags were first and second respectively.

Which has been leading some to ask - "Is Iran the end of the MSM?" The answer is probably no right now - but as Kain notes:

We are witnessing two revolutions here - one, the "green revolution" in Iran which may or may not be a success, and the other the technology and news information revolution.  We are witnessing the unwitting suicide and slow death of the news media as we know it, as they cave to ratings and apathy rather than getting out there and covering a real story, as they aid and abbet the numbing and dumbing down of the American people.

Well put.  Oh and don't forget your hashtags.

Tags: cnnfail, fail, general election, hashtags, Iran, MSM, twitter (all tags)



props for citizen journalists.

by canadian gal 2009-06-16 05:43PM | 0 recs
Just goes to show...

That Twitter/Facebook/YouTube/Blogger/etc. "netizen journalism" is the future. And whether it's Iran's state-run media or CNN trying to "filter" the news down to us, they can only control the messaging for so long...

by atdleft 2009-06-16 05:52PM | 0 recs
Montazeri condemns violence, questions

election results, supports youths pursuit for their rights and justice and warns the police and army personnels on illegal actions.

Now, based on my religious duties, I will remind you :

1- A legitimate state must respect all points of view. It may not oppress all critical views. I fear that this lead to the lost of people's faith in Islam.

2- Given the current circumstances, I expect the government to take all measures to restore people's confidence. Otherwise, as I have already said, a government not respecting people's vote has no religious or political legitimacy.

3- I invite everyone, specially the youth, to continue reclaiming their dues in calm, and not let those who want to associate this movement with chaos succeed.

4- I ask the police and army personals not to "sell their religion", and beware that receiving orders will not excuse them before god. Recognize the protesting youth as your children. Today censor and cutting telecommunication lines can not hide the truth.

I pray for the greatness of the Iranian people.

http://occident.blogspot.com/2009/06/con firmed-montazeri-questions-election.html

by louisprandtl 2009-06-16 05:53PM | 0 recs
Jerome, please turn MyDD green in support
of Iranians!!
by louisprandtl 2009-06-16 06:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Jerome, please turn MyDD green in support


by canadian gal 2009-06-16 06:51PM | 0 recs
I don't know

green is the color of Mousavi.  It's not a neutral color symbolizing free elections.  I think Obama is wise to just call for a fair process rather than getting behind one candidate.  While he's better than Ahmadinejad, Mousavi was a brutal repressor when he was PM.  

by JJE 2009-06-17 05:50AM | 0 recs
I agree Mousavi's term as PM during 80s was

marked with repressive measures especially against the secular leftwing forces.

The green has become the symbol of Iranian youth's quest for freedom and justice.

by louisprandtl 2009-06-17 05:57AM | 0 recs
We aren't Obama

Obama isn't free to endorse one candidate or another.  We, anonymous bloggers, can (and maybe should) show solidarity with the person and movement that is currently the reform agent; what happened in the '80s is not the key issue right now.

by Dracomicron 2009-06-17 06:03AM | 0 recs
I suppose

but it's hard for me to muster full-throated support for the lesser of two evils.  A large part of this crisis is a struggle wetween wings of a theocratic elite.

by JJE 2009-06-17 06:38AM | 0 recs
No, that's not the point

It's not the struggle between "wings of a theocratic elite," it's the struggle between proponents of corruption and proponents of free and fair elections that we should be concerned with.

I couldn't care less what Mousawi's policies are; if he was cheated out of a fair vote and the people want to take issue with that with peaceful protests, then I'm behind that 100%.  

by Dracomicron 2009-06-17 06:49AM | 0 recs
The point is

can you express solidarity with those clamoring for a fair result without appearing to be endorsing Mousavi's candidacy?  I just think it's important to be careful that we aren't doing the latter while intending to do only the former.

by JJE 2009-06-17 10:08AM | 0 recs
I don't think it's possible at this point

Just as you could never undermine Obama's status as the civil rights and reform candidate, Mousavi has wedded his candidacy to the cause of fair elections.  Not much to be done about that.

I would rather they do a re-vote instead of just declaring Mousavi the winner, but it's not really my decision, and the important thing here is letting Iran's people sort this out themselves.

by Dracomicron 2009-06-17 10:46AM | 0 recs
Re: No, that's not the point

You are under the illusion that this was a free election, it was corrupt well before the first vote was cast. All candidates are preapproved by the Ayatollah. It's a big sham to create the image of democracy. Mousavi deserves no sympathy, the voters do though. Not because of the potential fraud in the vote counting, but because the voters were never given honest candidates to vote for to begin with and Iranians live under the dictatorship of the Ayatollah.

by oc 2009-06-17 09:05PM | 0 recs
Bomb, bomb, bomb

Bomb, bomb Iran.

by JJE 2009-06-18 06:11AM | 0 recs
how about the right of the people

to get the leader they voted for?  Can you get behind that?

by Teacher1956 2009-06-17 01:53PM | 0 recs
Obama was not wise

he basically said it should matter to us who wins because they are both the same.  But that is not the effing point. The point is that clearly, the election was rigged and we are supposed to believe in the will of the people, not just care whether one politician or another is better to our american eyes.

by Teacher1956 2009-06-17 01:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama was not wise

Oh my god - I've been hoping you'd stop by.

Can you tell me, what the fuck is THIS:

For example, "It's no secret that we flaunt our perceptions on others with a vorosity(???) that is unequaled."  Is that even English?

And when did you guys get all New Age?  It's alright if I wasn't supposed to see this - you can keep it "in the mix" if you want.  Just promise me you won't go all Heaven's Gate on us.

by Jess81 2009-06-17 02:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama was not wise

Outside the circle, to infinity and beyond!

by french imp 2009-06-17 03:21PM | 0 recs
WTF is that?

my god its worse than i thought.

by canadian gal 2009-06-17 03:37PM | 0 recs
Re: WTF is that?

I know it's like "hmm.  Wtf?  W.T.F...." and then you begin to feel afraid.

I'm worried about subliminal messages, like after watching it someone will flash a red queen at me and I'll get in my car and drive it into a fuel station at 90 miles an hour.

by Jess81 2009-06-17 05:24PM | 0 recs
Re: WTF is that?

you've had me giggling for like 10 minutes now with that comment.

by canadian gal 2009-06-17 06:33PM | 0 recs
Re: WTF is that?



"...seven days"

by Jess81 2009-06-17 06:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama was not wise

Zen PUMA.  That's fucking hilarious!

by fogiv 2009-06-17 03:49PM | 0 recs
So is that the voice of Marshall Applewhite

or New Hampster? I like how it morphed into aliens...so I now know that PUMAs are actually the aliens amongst us...although I don't know what to do with that knowledge.

by louisprandtl 2009-06-17 05:30PM | 0 recs
New Hampster?

I hadn't thought of that.

Yeah, it's totally New Hampster narrating the "Taj Mahal of Political Consciousness".  That is until someone proves me wrong.  That's totally New Hampster.

Haha, New Hampster sounds like Chuck Schumer after a gelding.

by Jess81 2009-06-17 10:22PM | 0 recs
In SNL World, it was almost one of those

Jack Handey's Deep Thoughts....;)

http://www.deepthoughtsbyjackhandey.com/ today.asp

by louisprandtl 2009-06-17 11:04PM | 0 recs
I don't know why I feel so but I think we are onto

to something...it must be New Hampster..

by louisprandtl 2009-06-18 12:59AM | 0 recs
LOL, what the shit is that...??

So glad I popped in today.

by sricki 2009-06-17 05:30PM | 0 recs
Is that the effing point?

I thought the effing point was that if Obama looks like he's taking Mousavi's side, then the regime says "See?  Mousavi's supporters are just American stooges seeking to overturn the Islamic Revolution.  Time for a crackdown."  Then a bunch of protesting Iranians get their asses kicked/murdered/imprisoned/tortured.  But hey, it makes American bloggers with no skin in the game feel better, and that's all that matters, right?

by JJE 2009-06-17 06:38PM | 0 recs
When Ahmadinejad rears his head

where does he rear it?  Alaska of course.

by JJE 2009-06-18 06:09AM | 0 recs
Re: I don't know

An American President supporting one of the candidates in an Iranian election would be a boon to their opponent.  That's not exactly a secret.  Hell, in THIS country a candidate can't be too popular with foreign nationals - otherwise voters will start looking at them cockeyed.  Let alone Iran.  Let alone popular with a head of state of a country that called them part of the axis-of-evil.  Can you imagine if Ahmadinijad had endorsed in 2008?

Other than platitudes, the less the state department says, the better.  If interational PR could effect things, that would be different, but it can't.

by Jess81 2009-06-17 02:18PM | 0 recs
Re: #iranelection.

CNN/FoxNews/MSNBC model:

1.  Government, corporation, or political campaign emails a press release.

2.  News outlet repeats it in whole.

3.  Hired Hacks (the same ones every time) "debate" the press release.

4.  Morons watch, believe, get scared, and spend all their money on the advertised junk.

by SuperCameron 2009-06-17 05:52AM | 0 recs
Remember when it was cool that you could program

in your pajamas?
Now you can be a CIA agent too!
Or a novelist.
or a reporter, for that matter.

Treasure every single piece of information that you get out of Iran during this. Innocent people will die because of that information.

by RisingTide 2009-06-17 08:38AM | 0 recs
An Indian blogger view of the events

http://www.ultrabrown.com/posts/you-say- you-want-a-revolution

Just to give us a different perspective.

by Pravin 2009-06-17 11:02AM | 0 recs
Re: #iranelection.

Ahmadinejad got 2/3 of the vote in all counties of Iran... which is almost as probable as winning the lottery...

by evamoly 2009-06-17 11:02PM | 0 recs
Re: #iranelection.

On the other hand, someone has to win at the lottery...

by french imp 2009-06-18 12:30AM | 0 recs
Re: #iranelection.

Quite frankly, I am fine with Obama being cautious on this. This is hardly among the biggest injustices going on in the world right now. I dont think it's worth risking America's name on this. There are bigger battles to be fought.

by Pravin 2009-06-18 11:21AM | 0 recs
Regardless of Obama's or Other Gov't Response...

...as the diary points out, this is truly a dismal failure of the MSM, where the coverage I saw revolved around depictions that, at least to me, just re-enforced the aforementioned 'crazy Middle Easterners acting crazy' stereotype - mixed with an "of course it's a rigged election, it's the Middle East" atmosphere.

Also - while I can't claim this definitively for all MSM coverage, what I personally saw unforgivably underplayed the serious risks that protesters took. I suppose that was superfluous to the stereotype... or at least just a typical aspect of it.

#CNNfail indeed!

On a slight tangent... this is the second time in the last 12-18 months that I've heard some at-least-moderately-represented corner of the non-MSM news-covering world proclaim that the MSM handling of a particular story was heralding the death of the MSM (I'm sure there have been others, but this I remember well).

The last time, the discussion from those expressing outrage was a lot more palpably angry, and the combination of outrage and decisiveness with which they described how the "MSM's finally gone too far and will be rejected by the greater public" was stunning.

And with good reason...

The 'outraged ones' were part of a "Pajama's Media" show, and the weighty topic which the MSM dropped the ball on was...

...get ready for it...

John Edwards' affair!

Yes, if only the MSM had covered that one properly, the world would be a different, better place.

Good to know the left and the right is keeping tabs on how the MSM handles the big stuff!

[sorry to semi-hijack the diary; I just had to bring it up once this diary jogged my memory]

by RecoveringRepublican 2009-06-18 03:26PM | 0 recs


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