Media and Politics in the United States

Course description: We will examine print and television media, social media and the Internet; the constitutional status of the political media; who owns and controls the media; media bias; and what is its role in campaigns, elections, and policy-making. 

I. Introduction

          The Nature of Journalism
          Who Owns and Controls the Media
          Advertising, Rhetoric, and Truth

II. Media Defined

          Language and Signs
          Print Media
          Visual Media (TV)
          Digital Media (the Internet)
           Social Media

III. The Political Context

          The First Amendment and the Media
          Political Expression
          How the Media Shape Public Opinion
          Campaigns and Elections

IV. What the Media Does To Us and For Us

          Media and Political Power
          Information: Candidates and Policy Issues
          Political Marketing

V. The Political Media and Self-Government

          Political Media and Polarization
          Channel TV
          Media Bias and Media Spin

VI. Reforming the Media

          The Ideal Media
          Constitutional and Political Obstacles to Reform

          Internet Resources     


The Annotated Constitution - The Free Speech and Press Clauses -from the U.S. Congress - [Go to page 1140.]

On the Media --This is a weekly PBS program focusing on the media.

Media Bias/Fact Check --This website classifies media outlets from left to right.

Reliable Sources --This is a program on CNN which examines news relating to the media.

Kate Vinton, “The 15 Billionaires Own America's News Media Companies“ –from Forbes Magazine, June 1, 2016

"These Six Corporations Control 90% of the Media in America" --from (2012)

Editorial Board of The Wall Street Journal, "The Tale of Stormy Donald," March 26, 2018

Ashley Lutz, "These 6 Corporations Control 90% of the Media in America" --from

"Who Owns the Media?" --from

"Who Owns the Media?" --from PBS (Independent Lens)

"Media in the United States" --from

"Media and News" --from the PEW Research Center (

"U.S. Social Media and Politics - Statistics and Facts" --from

"Do Social Media Threaten Democracy" --from The Economist, November 4, 2017

Susan Condor, Christian Tileagă, and Michael Billig, "Political Rhetoric" --from

Marshall McCluhan,
The Medium is the Message - Chapter 1 --from MIT

Museum -- "The Newseum is an interactive museum that promotes free expression and the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, while tracing the evolution of communication."

"Communicaton Studies" --from

Mark Thompson, Enough Said: What's Gone Wrong With the Language (St. Martins, 2016)

Amanda Taub and Max Fischer, "Where Countries are Tinderboxes, Facebook is a Match" --from The New York Times,
April 21, 2018

Vanessa Otero, "Keeping It Real: Tips and Strategies for Evaluating Fake News" --from Loyola Marymount University Library

Vanessa Otero, "All Generalizations Are False" --from Loyola Marymount University Library (

"Media Bias in the United States" --from

Hannah Byrd Little, "Information Bias" --from the Journal of the Association of School Librarians, April, 2017

"Media and News" --from the PEW Research Center

"Did Fake News On Facebook Help Elect Donald Trump?" --from NPR, April 11, 2018

RT - Question More --the Russian website

David E. Truncellito, "Epistemology" --from the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy

John Dickerson, "What If the Problem Isn't the President--It's the Presidency? --from The Atlantic, May, 2018

Julius Baggini, Book Review of Michael S. Gassaniga, The Conscousness Instinct: Unravelling the Mystery of How the
Brain Makes the Mind (2018)

David Callaway, "Press Freedom is Under Attack" --from USA Today, May 3, 2018

"All Pants on Fire! Statements Involving Donald Trump" --from

Daniel T. Gilbert,  "How Mental Systems Believe" -from

Nicholas Kristof, "Our Addiction to Trump" --from The New York Times,  May 5, 2018

"Is the System Rigged Against Democrats""  (book review)--from The New York Times, May 19, 2018

"Top 30 U.S. Newspapers and News Media" --from

"Louisiana News Media" --from

Hunt Alcott and Matthew Gentzkow, "Social Media and Fake News in the 2016 Election"" (Spring, 2017)

Knight First Amendment Institute v. Trump (2018) --U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, Judge
Naomi Reice Buchwald

Diane Herbst, "Donald Trump Told Lesley Stahl--Off Camera--the Real Reason He Attacks the Press" --from

Steve Bannon - ABC - Sunday, June 17, 2018 -- Lying said to be simply "Particular Vocabulary"

"Distinguishing Between Factual and Opinion Statements in the News" --from the PEW Research Center,
June 18, 2018