Russian news may be biased – but so is much western media
Piers Robinson, The Guardian- Manipulation of the news for propaganda purposes is not the prerogative of the west’s enemies. It’s vital to look at all media, including the UK’s, with a critical eye
As tensions continue to escalate with Russia, increasing attention is being paid in western media to what are frequently described as the “propaganda” activities of Vladimir Putin’s regime. The Sun headlines “Putin’s glamorous propaganda girls who front a new UK-based news agency ‘that aims to destabilise Britain’” in reference to the recent establishment of Sputnik News in Edinburgh, while the Mail describes how “Vladimir Putin is waging a propaganda war on the UK”.
Most recently in the Times, a study by an MPhil student at the University of Oxford, Monica Richter, is reported to confirm that people who watch the 24-hour English-language news channel Russia Today (RT) are more likely to hold anti-western views. The tone of the Times article is clear: RT uses unqualified and “obscure” experts, is frequently sanctioned by Ofcom for bias and failure to remain impartial and, worst of all, actually seems to be “turning viewers against the west”. Perhaps the intended subtext of this particular news story is to warn people off watching non-western media for fear of betraying their home country in some way.