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The More You Watch the Less You Know: News Wars/(sub)Merged Hopes/Media Adventures Paperback – November 4, 1997
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From Library Journal
From his beginnings at a Boston rock station, to a producer's spot with 20/20, to his extensive contributions as producer and director of television specials, Schechter's media experiences have put him at the head of the line to comment on the industry's eccentricities. Throughout, he has closely observed the people, politics, and conglomerates of the media world with uncanny recall, providing an absorbing retrospective replete with astute observations on the subtleties underlying content, "slants," players, and messages conveyed to the public. The result is an intelligent and saddening yet humorous depiction of the inner workings of giant media groups and behind-the-scenes forces that often mold public reaction to world events. For those with an interest beyond the superficial in news and media, this will be particularly thought-provoking. For general circulating libraries, especially those with media collections.?Carol J. Binkowski, Bloomfield, N.J.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Kirkus Reviews
This behind-the-scenes look at America's media monopoly might more aptly be titled ``The More You Write, the Less You Remember Your Point.'' Although Schechter offers many interesting insights about the world of journalism and where it is going (downhill, fast), this book suffers from a lack of cohesion. If this were one of the documentaries or news programs Schechter (Emmy Awardwinning producer for 20/20 and CNN) directed or produced, you'd have to assume he'd be yelling, ``Cut, cut!'' Hints that this was going to be more than a tad rambling come in the introduction, which is a whopping 54 pages long. There is also more than a little back-patting going on in this memoir/expos. Readers are constantly reminded that plenty of other journalists may have sold out, but Schechter did not. That said, he does America a service by warning of the problems inherent in a society in which journalism has become synonymous with entertainment, and media mergers mean news that is one-sided and sanitized. Not one to simply whine, Schechter closes the book with suggestions about what journalists and the American public can do to change the status quo. -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
At bottom, Sheckter's book provides insights into both strengths and weaknesses of the New Left from which he hails. None of the Old Left's rigid dogmatism enters into the text. On one hand, this allows him to confront a lock-step media in a more agile and less preconceived manner than critics of old. On the other hand, it produces a hopeful innocence that seems to learn much less from informed experience than should be the case. Does the author really expect these corporate entities to reform themselves in a progressive manner as his recommendations indicate. Here we arrive at a crux of the dilemma confronting any erstwhile reformer. Can real, humane change be expected of those entities whose bottom line is always money, even when an inventive and dedicated gadfly like Sheckter burrows from within. Without serious pressure from outside the industry, can such gadflys serve as anything more than occasionally troublesome house radicals. Given the temper of the times, that may be as much as anyone can expect.
However, the book soon veers off course focusing mainly on the aphartide in South Africa. While this does correspond with the theme, I don't know if it deserves 3/4 of the book.
I also got the impression that the author sees himself as a saint, impervious to the trends that are affecting the rest of the media.
Not a bad book, I suppose, but there are better out there.