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Blog 11 Colbert Report

                The Colbert Report is a very interesting and different form of journalism, one that could be classified as sensationalism.  Sensationalism is “news that exaggerates or features lurid details and depictions of events to reach a target audience”.  I recently watched the February 15th episode, and watched many interesting takes on various aspects of news.

                Colbert discusses the Middle Eastern conflicts in this episode, and takes a very light approach to them- one that could be considered offensive or thought-provoking.  The offensiveness is apparent by just watching the show, through jokes about Heidi Mubarak taking Egypt’s government head (it was a picture of Mubarak with blonde braids).  Thought-provoking things are also brought up in the show. For example, at one point, Colbert shows reports of Muslims “celebrating their democracy in the streets” and later shows the same clips, only saying that it is “Muslims rioting in the streets.”  It plays on a common American perception, because the words that correlate with the video often give the viewers opinions on what is actually occurring.  Also, Colbert plays with the American misperceptions of actual politics in the Middle East.  He shows clips over and over again with Americans talking about how the Muslim Brotherhood will inevitably take over and constantly question whether or not the Middle East is ready for democracy.  Colbert then proceeded to do research proving that only 1% of the population even voted for the Muslim Brotherhood for a presidential election.  In addition, Colbert questions many people’s reasons that Egypt “isn’t ready for democracy” and asks if the Middle East has genetically different codes that make people believe that democracy is not a good choice.  It was a funny and interesting look on the perceptions many people have.  Fox News on the other hand, is one of the news sources that questions whether or not Egypt is ready for democracy.  In an episode of late, Fox had an author about Middle Eastern affairs come in and talk about the effect.  Rosenberg, the author, brings up the Muslim Brotherhood and their vow to dominate, but the lack of information that connects with Colbert makes me question who actually knows? Which of the two is known to be a more reliable news source? Obviously, Fox is more reliable because it is actually dedicated to news, whereas the Colbert Report is more about fun and jokes.  I feel that the Colbert report definitely is not a legitimate news source compared to others.

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