Media Landscape

03.20.12

There is America, and Then There is "Fox News America"

If you want an(other) example of how America is hardening into information valleys that do not communicate with each other, look at this chart of cable attention to the Trayvon Martin case:

cable_crop

CNN has led the coverage, no surprise given my home network's fascination with crime stories.

Liberal MSNBC has followed.

And Fox? Hardly any coverage at all. If you get your information from Fox, as so many do, you'd probably have no idea at all of a crime story that has transfixed the other half of America.

I know, I know: Fox has a narrative. But even a narrative-network would, you might think, want to offer its viewers some glimpse of what's going on in the next valley, if only informationally. "Here's what to say when your crazy liberal sister-in-law starts ranting and raving about Trayvon Martin."

But no.

The Canadian novelist Hugh MacLennan used the phrase "two solitudes" to describe the mutual incomprehension of French and English-Canadians. It applies as aptly now to the residents of Fox Nation as compared to the rest of the people of the United States.