Fox is controversially proclaimed the most watched news station, even over CNN. Although many disagree with the methods of ratings calculation used in the formation of these statistics, no one denies that Fox News has risen in popularity.
Fox news is owned by Rupert Murdoch, who was recently involved in a hacking scandal that crossed oceans and offended millions. Murdoch’s companies have allegedly been involved in the hacking of voicemails of 9-11 victims and their families, and have even reportedly gone so far as to hack into the voicemails of a missing girl, deleting them and giving her family false hope that she was alive. Even so, FOX News has not yet suffered in popularity.
This is not the first time that Fox has escaped the notice of its viewers during a scandal. By simply doing a quick internet search for the phrase “Fox fabricates,” one can see the many times Fox has been found to have fabricated “evidence” and “facts” that are presented on its many news programs. This fabricated evidence seems to arouse viewers instead of offending them. Fox personalities have a way of blaming the mainstream media for all of the pitfalls of the world, and so any reports of these fabrications offend viewers who see the reports as another attack from the liberal media.
As if these problems weren’t enough, studies indicate that Fox viewers are adopting these views that are so often based upon false evidence and statistics at an alarming rate. Fox viewers are more likely than viewers of any other news network to adopt views consistent with those of their news network. (See the study here.) Given the abundance of scandal and lack of credibility associated with Fox news, this is a big problem for American politics.
Rupert Murdoch has long supported conservative and corporate causes. As a billionaire, it is in his best interest to support causes that will protect his wealth, even at the expense of society at large. To do this, his news networks employ tactics such as using false information and statistics to evoke outrage from the public. As viewers spread the misinformation and outrage, the popularity of the network increases. In states such as Louisiana, where the population is largely religious, largely advanced in age, less educated, and more economically disadvantaged, the network is even more popular, and the tactics more effective.
In short, the next time you are outraged by something you heard on the news, ask yourself if it is really news, or if it is only serving the needs of those out to protect their billions.