Sometimes it seems today’s mainstream media sees itself as no different in its pre-election analysis than Brent Musburger, Irv Cross, Phyllis George and Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder did in the late 70’s when “The NFL Today” was the only real pre-game show out there.
In fact, much of the MSM seems ready to call the “game” even before the kick-off. Instead of devoting time and energy delving into socialistic economic plans and “possibly-sordid” associations of candidates, they’re devoting more and more time investigating “Joe the Plumber” and going after tough questioners like WFTV’s Barbara West in Orlando… people who would dare question Barack Obama’s stances on an issue.
Objectivity seems to be flying out the window, which makes non-traditional media even more important than ever. Before the days of blogs, YouTube, and non-traditional news alternatives, the networks and the newspapers were our only source of information. At least back then, there seemed to be something more than a feigned attempt at balanced reporting.
Just take a look at what my dear wife forwarded me this morning. The insights of an “average Joe” (or Chris, in this case) can be very telling. The polls are within the margin of error. The race, if looking at national polls, seems to be tipping toward Obama, but reality is that the race for the White House boils down to just a handful of keep battleground states. Polling there is all that matters.
And then there’s the polling data itself. Pollsters can only reach those folks who have traditional landline phone capabilities. How are they factoring in the growing population of cell-phone-only households? As blogger Chris Jeub points out…
First, the polls are polling TV watchers. Most cable shows are bundled with DSL packages, and those with cable or DSL likely have landlines. Those who are dependent on Internet news (the source of alternative media) rely on cell phones, not television. Internet-savvy folks are much more educated as to the issues of this election, and because of this they are more apt to vote for McCain/Palin.
So before we hang up the pads and head to the locker room for post-game analysis, let’s keep in mind that Election Day is still 6 days out… and technology is beginning to make a little more than a dent in the way people receive their news and information. What the pre-game pundits are saying should be taken with more than just a grain of salt.