web analytics
August 20, 2014 / 24 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat (L) visits the JewishPress.com booth at The Event. And the Winners of the JewishPress.com Raffle Are…

Congratulations to all the winners of the JewishPress.com raffle at The Event



Home » InDepth » Monitor »

ADL’s Misleading Media Surveys


Media-Monitor-logo

The Anti-Defamation League, fresh off its lamentable stint as unwitting public relations apparatus for Mel Gibson, has, yet again, demonstrated a jaw-dropping inability (or perhaps a cynical unwillingness) to differentiate between a newspaper’s news coverage and its editorial views.

Every so often the ADL releases a survey of Israel-related editorials from a few dozen U.S. newspapers, and each time the organization trumpets its finding that, what do you know, they love us, they really love us!

Typical of the mawkish – and misleading – spin the ADL puts on these surveys was this comment which adorned a press release dated June 25, 2001: ‘Contrary to the widespread negative assumptions about U.S. media coverage in the Middle East, the Anti-Defamation League…today released findings of an editorial survey of the nation’s largest daily newspapers, which showed overwhelming support for Israel and significant criticism of the Palestinian Authority and its leader, Yasir Arafat.’

An even bigger howler was this statement, which appeared in the introduction to a Dec. 14, 2000 survey: ‘ ‘Contrary to some prevailing assumptions about media coverage of the Mideast crisis, newspapers in the United States by and large support Israel’s position in the conflict,’ said Glen A. Tobias, ADL national chairman, and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL national director.’

(Don’the statement in perfect tandem, or did Tobias start the thought and Foxman pick it up mid-sentence? You think maybe Tobias made like Paul Winchell or Edgar Bergen, throwing his voice while Foxman merely moved his lips, a latter-day Knucklehead Smiff or Charlie McCarthy? Of course, the possibility exists that they sang the words, a few decades late for Ted Mack’s Amateur Hour and a couple of years too early for American Idol, but who wouldn’t pay for a bootleg recording of that?)

Notice that the ADL release speaks of ‘prevailing assumptions about media coverage’ – which to anybody reading it suggests exactly that – media coverage. But as we’ve indicated, the ADL’s sporadic surveys deal strictly with editorials, a whole different animal.

And don’t let anyone tell you the ADL is not a tradition-minded outfit. Foxman and company are positively Tevya-esque in their adherence to the familiar old ways – namely, their insistence on blurring distinctions, as evidenced by the following headline that sits atop their press release of November 30, 2004: ‘U.S. Newspapers Overwhelmingly Critical of Arafat.’

Well, the news coverage may or may not have been hard on Arafat, but there’s no way to tell from the ADL survey, which once again focused exclusively on editorial comment. ‘Thirty-nine of the papers (78 percent) expressed criticism of Arafat, his life and legacy,’ the ADL reassured itself, although the organization did acknowledge that ‘nine of the papers (18 percent) presented a mixed view of Arafat, his life and his legacy’ and ‘two newspapers – The New York Times and The Los Angeles times – presented no criticism of Arafat but rather focused on the future of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.’

That’s all very informative, but the question remains: Why does the ADL insist on monitoring newspaper editorials, when it’s the reporting of stories relating to Israel and the Middle East that frames readers’ perspectives and shapes popular perceptions? Check out the best pro-Israel media watchdogs –  CAMERA.org,  HonestReporting.com,  MRC.org,  TimesWatch.org - and what you’ll immediately notice is that the problem with the media’s Israel coverage lies not with editorials but with day-in, day-out reporting – the choice of what to emphasize or play down; the selection of photographs; the way headlines are worded; the very placement of articles.

The Monitor suspects the ADL would rather not survey actual news reporting because the only honest conclusion would be that the most reliably pro-Israel reporting tends to be found in newspapers with a conser-vative political orientation, while papers with a liberal bent are decidedly more sympathetic to the Palestinians.

After all, the last thing Abe Foxman wants is to jeopardize his good relations with The New York Times.

About the Author: Jason Maoz is the Senior Editor of The Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “ADL’s Misleading Media Surveys”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
The Gaza Region
Live Updates: Hamas Rockets Explode in Southern Israel (16:30pm)
Latest Indepth Stories
Sigmar Guggenheimer

The world wars caused unimaginable anguish for the Jews but God also scripted a great glory for our people.

Mowing the lawn

Judging by history, every time Hamas rebuilds their infrastructure, they are stronger than before.

Digital StillCamera

His father asked him to read Psalms from the Book of Tehilim every day.

Bosch-Fawstin-They-Say-We-Say

(Reposted with permission from author’s website) Moderate truth-teller Daniel Pipes (Dream) has further moderated his stance on Islam by actually entertaining the idea of “Moderate Islamism”, with Andrew C. McCarthy- whom I’ve debated about this- giving it some credence. We’ve gone from Naming the Enemy -Nazism, Communism- to Renaming the Enemy – “Islamic Totalitarianism”, “Radical Islam”, “Islamism”, […]

Maimonides: “Your 1 mitzva may tip the scales and bring redemption to the entire world and creation”

Jerusalem has been aware of the importance of China to its growth and security.

In other words, how by any rational playbook can one even begin to explain anti-Semitism?

Israel has nine Iron Domes, but you Mr. Hannity are the tenth.

Entire movements within “orthodoxy” propagate a Judaism of outlandish folklore and Jewish mysticism

The Rebbetzin began campaigning to increase public awareness of the importance of saying Amen.

Obama is transparent, if you read his oracular signs with the right key.

Everything I imbibe is with my inimitable fervor for being Jewish.

The multiculturalism that animates the hate-Israel crowd is sprinkled with code words of oppression

All the tactical problems have solutions. The real problem is not with the enemy; it is with us.

Israel feebly begged Hamas to end the barrage, promising that “quiet will be met with quiet.”

The UN ignores humanity’s worst war criminals while incessantly condemning Israel.

More Articles from Jason Maoz
Presidential-Seal-062014

These are not necessarily the best all-around biographies or studies of the individual presidents listed (though some rank right up there), but the strongest in terms of exploring presidential attitudes and policies toward Israel.

Clinton-051614

The Clintonan “engagement” liberals remember with such fondness did nothing but embolden Arafat and Hamas and Hizbullah as they witnessed Israel’s only real ally elevate process ahead of policy.

What really makes one wonder about the affinity felt by certain Jews for Grant was the welcome mat he put out for some of the country’s most pernicious anti-Semites.

With 2013 marking half a century since Kennedy’s fateful limousine ride in Dallas, the current revels are exceeding the revisionist frenzies of years past, with a seemingly endless parade of books, articles and television specials designed to assure us that, despite everything that has come to light about him since his death, JFK was a great president, or at least a very good president who would have been great had his life not been so cruelly cut short.

As someone who for the past fifteen years has been writing a column that largely focuses on the news media, I’ve read what is no doubt an altogether unhealthy number of books on the subject. Most of them were instantly forgettable while some created a brief buzz but failed to pass the test of time. And then there were those select few that merited a permanent spot on the bookshelf.

George W. Bush has been getting some positive media coverage lately, with recent polls showing him at least as popular as his successor, Barack Obama, and a big new book about the Bush presidency by New York Times chief White House correspondent Peter Baker (Days of Fire, Doubleday) portraying Bush as a much more hands-on chief executive than his detractors ever imagined.

Readers who’ve stuck with the Monitor over the years will forgive this rerun of sorts, but as we approach the fortieth anniversary of the Yom Kippur War – and with the stench of presidential indecisiveness hanging so heavily over Washington these days – it seemed only appropriate to revisit Richard Nixon’s role in enabling Israel to recover from the staggering setbacks it suffered in the first week of fighting.

Shakespeare had it right. The evil that men do indeed lives after them. Case in point: Nahum Goldmann, who served in a variety of Jewish and Zionist organizational leadership posts from the 1920s through the 1970s.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/media-monitor/adls-misleading-media-surveys/2004/12/15/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: