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Current events learning and alternative media?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
My preteens are starting to get interested in current events and I'm looking for media outlets that are less than mainstream to compare news stories. Any recommendations? What are your favourites?
post #2 of 10

I don't have much to add, but I hope folks have some suggestions for you, because I have been repeatedly disappointed by every media outlet I've looked into so far. I would love to find someone that actually shares news still, instead of either fluff or trying to shove some agenda down my throat! 

post #3 of 10

I admit I have kind of just let my kids at current events without much filtering or active provision of resources. And in Canada I don't think we suffer from as blatant news bias as your bi-partisan political landscape tends to create. My kids read and watch a lot of current events stuff on the internet, often encountering heated discussions on blogs or reddit and then heading off to research facts and search up commentary from both sides. My 9-year-old less so; she gets a lot of her current events stuff of the TV news, as well as from a couple of awesome political satire / political commentary shows we have here ("This Hour Has 22 Minutes" and "Rick Mercer Report"). But that's CBC; they have mild liberal leanings here in Canada, but it's very minimal. They are, after all, the state-supported media corporation, and the government is currently right of centre. So not much political bias in the grand scheme of things, and I'm happy with her getting her info there.

 

But I wonder if as Americans you might find some interesting perspectives from CBC or BBC? If you're looking for US news free of US political bias, you might find a bit of fodder there. Canada in particular devotes a fair bit of air-time to US affairs. If nothing else it might be interesting to look at how politics in the US are portrayed elsewhere. www.cbc.ca/news/world might be a place to start. Just a thought.

 

Miranda


Edited by moominmamma - 11/20/12 at 2:52pm
post #4 of 10

Very good idea. Thanks for the tip. While I haven't been specifically aiming for US based news, I think most of what I'm finding is either US based or may as well be. I'll check out the link you gave me, as well as digging specifically into international views of US and international news.

post #5 of 10

NPR and PBS are both great and the equivalent of Canada's the CBC.  There is of course the BBC (from Britain) and also ABC (Australian). Radio Netherlands and Radio New Zealand are both pretty great.  These are all public broadcasting services with quality programming but with a different geographical focuses.  Deutsche Welle which is the German world radio.  

 

Al Jazeera has fantastic documentaries in its Witness series covering stuff from around the world (http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/witness).  Al Jazeera also has other really good programming and its focus obviously is the middle east.   I think your pre-teens will benefit from being exposed from may public broadcasting services around.  Our world is fascinating.   

 

The Korean Broadcasting Service (KBS) has some fun travel/food shows while the rest is meh.  The same with CCTV of China which has some cool travel pieces in China but overall it's programing is poor and it is the arm of the government and not a good source of information.  Fun to check out once in a while though.

 
All in all, I think PBS, NPR,  BBC CBC, Al Jazeera, Australian Broadcasting Company, and Radio New Zealand have the most to offer to a preteen as they have a full range of programming in English.  The rest are worth checking out as an adult though because to me they are all interesting!
post #6 of 10
I like to take a look at NaturalNews.com every so often. It's sometimes a little extreme, but it has also turned me onto some issues I never would have known about just reading CNN.
post #7 of 10

It's not something I've used with my kids, but I love TRNN (The Real News Network). They receive no government or corporate funding and accept no advertising. They don't cover everything comprehensively, but I like what I do see from them. I'm also a donor.

 

http://therealnews.com

 

Miranda

post #8 of 10

I love all the recommendations so far, and I have nothing to add as relates to unbiased reporting. If your preteens are interested in identifying how bias enters into reporting and what that looks like, you might try comparing articles on the same topic from sources biased in opposite directions and contrasting those with a neutral or mainstream source.  Alternet is pretty far left and Fox (obv) is far right as far as news in the US.  Confession: while i do read or listen to NPR, PBS, CNN, NYT, etc. I get a lot of my news from the Daily Show or Stephen Colbert if I am pressed for time or discouraged by the tone or content at other outlets.

post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the input, ladies. My kids and I love Rick Mercer, we watch him often. I had sort of forgotten about 22 minutes, we'll have to add that to the mix. I think TRNN is exactly the kind of thing I was looking for, it seems less sensational and over the top than some we've been listening to/reading.

We are in Canada and do listen to CBC broadcasts, but I find they leave a lot out, maybe not as much as some US networks though.

Love the idea about listening to international stations, if we decide to devote more time.
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Qalliope View Post

I love all the recommendations so far, and I have nothing to add as relates to unbiased reporting. If your preteens are interested in identifying how bias enters into reporting and what that looks like, you might try comparing articles on the same topic from sources biased in opposite directions and contrasting those with a neutral or mainstream source.  Alternet is pretty far left and Fox (obv) is far right as far as news in the US.  Confession: while i do read or listen to NPR, PBS, CNN, NYT, etc. I get a lot of my news from the Daily Show or Stephen Colbert if I am pressed for time or discouraged by the tone or content at other outlets.

I like this idea of comparing, say, Fox and Alternet's takes on the same stories.
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