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elbanditoroso's avatar

When did news outlets stop using words like "spin" and "propaganda"? When did these become "narratives" instead?

Asked by elbanditoroso (14549 points ) December 28th, 2013

I was listening to one of the new shows today, and the operative word these days appears to be “narrative”.

But that term seems to be utterly devoid of any serious meaning. It appears to mean “the story that one side is telling in order to arrange the facts in a way to convince you that they are right”.

But how does that differ from what we used to call “spin” (and we used to have spin-doctors to gussy up the message). Or even older – how is that any different from “propaganda”, which is a word with a much more negative connotation?

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6 Answers

Yetanotheruser's avatar

The word “narrative” seems to be used in a subtle effort to present a spin without admitting it.

gailcalled's avatar

About the same time that “impact” became a verb and “fun” became an adjective.

ETpro's avatar

It started when giant media conglomerates “consolidated” the press, movies, popular culture and such into one amalgamated infotainment industry where the only thing that mattered was profit, and they realized investigative journalism is far more expensive than just reporting what spinmeisters feed them. Also, the spin they report is being funded by them and other corporate megaliths and is all intended to support the idea that corporatocracy is what the Founding Fathers wanted to set up here.

josie's avatar

I did not notice it until the current president was elected. I bet it has something to do with Harvard.
It is right up there with “having a dialogue” in terms of new phrases that sound fabulous but have no meaning.

Can’t wait for this thread.

josie's avatar

But the point is, it just another word for propaganda. This is called this the “euphemism treadmill”
http://www.lesjones.com/2010/10/15/word-of-the-day-euphemism-treadmill/

snowberry's avatar

It’s simple. When spin and propaganda became the norm, that’s when!

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