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Colbert Report

I watched an episode of the Colbert Report entitled “David Albright”. I decided to focus on only one section of the show; the story about Italy’s Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and charges with may be upon him. The people of Italy, in over 200 cities, marched the other day in protest of their leader and his demeaning ways. This being an issue of sexual misconduct it sets up Stephen Colbert to use his most effective tool sensational journalism. In this section and most others of Colbert’s report he uses sensational journalism, which means news that is embellished here and there in order to add more feeling to the reporter’s story. Colbert does this in a number of ways, but mainly through humor. It is undeniable in my opinion that if you watch the Colbert Report and nothing else you will be more aware of what is going on in the world; in turn this proves to me that the Colbert Report is a form of news.

However, since he does only give the audience a brief overview of the topic and with a “spin”, sensation journalism, it is not a news source that should be relied upon. Because Colbert is entertaining and not only reporting the news to inform the viewers on current events, he does point out information that other sources would not, as helpful or unhelpful as they may be. For example, in this episode segment on Berlusconi he brings up other evidence that the people of Italy have confronted Berlusconi about, such as his parties. This is where Berlusconi has been reported to inviting underage girls to his villa and had, as Colbert put it in his sarcastic overtone, “bunga-bunga parties”. While I watch CNN’s version of the story not once did I feel like laughing, I rather found myself thinking more deeply about the issue and other like it. CNN, in around the same time that Colbert allotted to the issue, provided more quality information on the subject. Even though Colbert’s puns and investigatory tactics are quite amusing, it is not a source that a person who wants to be well informed on the world around them should solely use.

 

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Categories: #11
  1. February 23, 2011 at 2:29 am

    I agree that Colbert uses sensational journalism, and also that it’s primarily about getting an audience. I also agree that CNN’s definitely better as a news source. A program like Colbert Report could never be seen in an authoritarian regime, but only in a free press society like ours that values giving everyone the right to voice an opinion even if it’s critical of our governmental leaders.

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