Accurate. Agreed. And a completely fair business decision. We all have bill to pay.
Unfortunately, they (wrongly) continue to sell this new version of their craft (?) as journalism. The masses buy in - confirmation bias is a powerful force - and we are today exactly where we should be: Truth is fluid. Editorial is journalism. Everyone - blue, red or orange - gets hammer their facts into their echo chamber. Etc.
It's important to realize that there is no democracy or democratic process without a health and proper Fouth Estate.
Btw, Tali Sharot's "The Influential Mind" is a great read on the subject on influence.
Edit: their to there. with to without.
How is the general public supposed to learn what is happening though? If the entire MSM had adopted this new business model, and with the whole fake news thing that's been drilled into people's heads for so long, along with the narrative that anyone that disagrees with trustworthy organizations is a conspiracy theorist...is there a path out that consists of anything other than a major player committing financial suicide by breaking ranks, or them all deciding to come clean simultaneously?
Bloggers might be the one bright spot, but what percentage of the population reads blogs, and if they started to get too popular they may be framed as conspiracy theorists before long too. Not a good situation, unless you're China or Russia.
If you happen to see this late reply and have any recommendations of such people, I'd appreciate any suggestions you could make.
That's a good question. In theory I'd like to suggest they think. That is, develop critical thinking skills and some basic analysis skills. Yes, it's a big ask. But it would be useful across the board. Basics such as: confirmation bias, correlation vs cause, conflict of interest, and such. These skills are not as common as they should be.
That aside, broadcasters and publishers should be required to label news as news and editorial as editorial. Anecdotally, many people don't understand the difference, or why it matters. It's difficult to have discussions when "the facts" most people cite are based on editorial opinion. Sadly, hammer that option often enough and loud enough and it becomes "true."
Even so, it's a massive problem. There's still too much wiggle room for senders to "baffle them with bullshit." (See below.)
Editorial: My definition of news is: facts that are not only true but are also relevant and important. Anything - true or not - that doesn't meet this standard - again, to me - is fake news. In other words, when important and relevant stories are buried with trite fodder, the fodder is fake news. Just because something happened, just because some is true doesn't make it news. The sun coming up again is not news.