The Future Depends on Knowing

World news today is in a sad state. What once was a source of uncompromised facts—searched for by honest, truth-seeking journalists—is now a corporate, highly biased, agenda-based machine. Most people with a decent understanding of current affairs would agree that finding a reliable news source—especially on TV—is nearly impossible. It seems most major news agencies are more concerned with increasing their audience size and pleasing their sponsors than seeking out real news about what’s really going on. The aptly named Real News Network, however, is attempting to do just that.

Still in its BETA form online, The Real News Network claims it will change “what’s news and what’s a newsmaker.” With no corporate or government funding and no advertising, the network relies on viewer support via donations. With this freedom, Real News aims to “think and act independently and courageously,” according to Paul Jay, CEO and senior editor of Real News. “We won't blindly follow wire services or official press releases that attempt to set the news agenda. We will cover the big stories of the day, but we will broaden the definition of what's important.”

Considering the nonstop bombarded of contradictory information, it comes as no surprise that the American public is adopting skepticism as the new patriotism. These days, news programs are nothing more than a major source of frustration. Mostly fueled by the fact the Iraq War is proving is be a gigantic mistake, people simply don’t know what to believe anymore. In 2003, “If TV news had done its job,” Real News explains on its homepage video, “you would have known then what you know now.”

Real News could conceivably be the beginning of a much-needed restructuring in news media. Real News will begin online daily news in the fall and will launch a TV news program in 2008 centered on the election.