‘About a century ago the Western world entered an age of artificial substitutes, technical ingenuity, mechanical products, technological values, and accelerating motion. The watchword of that age was objectivity – a highly illusive standard for both leaders and the led. In particular, the notion of objectivity deeply affected the emerging mass communications industry, which before long was serving as one of the most powerful tools of global social management.
In the 19th century news had been an open ideological weapon; opinions splattered across most printed pages. But the modern media age brought with it a new “best practice” – objective reporting. Based on the contention that “rational people” could discover the truth if presented with enough unfettered facts, objectivity quickly became the largely unexamined goal of the professional press. In 1947, however, the Commission on Freedom of the Press concluded that it was no longer just a goal. It had become a fetish.’