President Trump Battling the Media Over Fake News?
When it comes to President Donald Trump’s relationship with the media, it seems to only go in one of two directions: either the media takes a pro-Trump stance or they criticize the president’s every move.
More often than not, the two words that President Trump reiterates are “fake news.” These two words are used when President Trump disagrees with reports put out by a media outlet or if there is false information being reported.
This now leads us to answering the question of whether or not media companies are attempting to use their platforms to defame the president for the purpose of starting controversy. Let’s take a more in-depth look at this matter.
Who Is Making This Claim?
Donald Trump himself is making the claim that the media is creating fake news stories about him and his team. President Trump took to Twitter to state his opinion.
Very little discussion of all the purposely false and defamatory stories put out this week by the Fake News Media. They are out of control – correct reporting means nothing to them. Major lies written, then forced to be withdrawn after they are exposed…a stain on America!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 10, 2017
President Trump is simply stating that the fake news being created is harmful to his public image. This would include how Americans and the world look at him as President of the United States of America. Many of the news outlets that President Trump is referring to have a global position, which does not help his image from the public’s point of view.
Now, the comments made by President Trump are not to start his own storyline and attack media companies. The claim being made through his Twitter account is actually true; the media is defaming President Trump. Recently, there have been three fake news stories that were reported by companies not fond of the president. This is why President Trump posted the above tweet.
Below are the details of the false reports that were spread about President Trump in order to defame him.
3 Big Fake News Stories in a Week
The fake news stories reported to defame President Trump came from multiple media sources. Therefore, the target on President Trump’s back is not only from one media company.
1) ABC News Fake News Report
The fake news report from ABC News resulted in Brain Ross being suspended by the network for four weeks without pay. The suspension was a result of reporting false facts about Michael Flynn, who was the former national security advisor for President Trump. Ross agreed with the suspension, stating, “My job is to hold people accountable and that’s why I agree with being held accountable myself.” (Source: “Brian Ross On ABC News Suspension: “I Agree With Being Held Accountable” — Update,” ABC News, December 2, 2017.)
Here are the details of what went down. Ross reported that President Donald Trump forced Flynn to contact Russia in regards to foreign policy before the election took place. Ross added that Flynn was going to testify against the president when Flynn admitted lying to the FBI. This news caused an uproar and an assumption that Trump would be impeached as the president.
The correct news was that Trump did assign Flynn and a small team of advisors to repair the tensions with Russia and for the U.S. to work with Russia against ISIS. But this all happened after the election took place. (Source: “ABC News statement on Michael Flynn report,” ABC News, December 2, 2017.)
In this case, it seems that ABC took the underlying story and twisted it. Of course, at face value, the initial report would not have put President Trump under a positive spotlight. But the true story puts Trump in a positive light; that he’s trying to put America in a better situation with its relationship to Russia. This is one example of the media trying to defame the president by having fake news reported.
2) CNN False Report
At first, CNN claimed that Donald Trump and his son received documents from WikiLeaks before the documents were available publicly. There was, in fact, an email sent to the Trumps, but this was after the documents were public record. (Source: “CNN corrects story on email to Trumps about Wikileaks,” CNN, December 8, 2017.)
CNN did not look into the claims being made against the Trump family to ensure that the news being reported was correct. Rather, The Washington Post looked into the claims and stated that the emails were sent after the reports were leaked. After this, CNN admitted their first report had false information.
This resulted in President Trump attacking CNN on Twitter for releasing false statements. This is another example of the media trying to taint President Trump’s image.
CNN’S slogan is CNN, THE MOST TRUSTED NAME IN NEWS. Everyone knows this is not true, that this could, in fact, be a fraud on the American Public. There are many outlets that are far more trusted than Fake News CNN. Their slogan should be CNN, THE LEAST TRUSTED NAME IN NEWS!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 9, 2017
This is not the first time that CNN reported “fake news.” Earlier in the year, there was a team of reporters that resigned over a false story about Trump having a link to a Russian investment fund. (Source: “CNN pulls story linking Trump ally to Russian bank executive,” NY Daily News, June 24, 2017.)
3) False Claims Reported by Bloomberg
Bloomberg reported that Robert Mueller and his special investigation team were receiving a subpoena on Donald Trump’s banking information with Deutsche Bank AG (NYSE:DB). This report was somewhat true; there was a subpoena, but it was for people that were affiliated with Donald Trump, not the president himself. (Source: “Deutsche Bank Records Said to Be Subpoenaed by Mueller,” Bloomberg, December 5, 2017.)
Again, at first look, the report that President Trump is being looked into is a major issue and would be concerning as an American. But this is only as a result of false statements being reported.
Conclusion: President Donald Trump Being Defamed
Yes. This one simple word answers the question of whether or not the president is being targeted by fake news. It is understandable if a small media company wrote a fake news story to drum up traffic and get a following.
However, the issue in this case is that these are large global media companies reporting false news. With a large audience base, these large media companies can influence how people view President Trump. In the end, it does seem that President Trump is being put under a negative spotlight.
The fake news stories all have a pattern; there is one underlying fact taken from the true story and the rest is twisted. Also, in each story, the president seems to have done nothing wrong or has tried to work for America in order to make it better.
If these types of fake news pieces continue, it could end with the reporter being suspended or perhaps even a termination of employment. It is possible that the media will tone down the fake news pieces and focus more on real news.