Anyone that follows my musings on this site is going to be aware of my penchant for dissent. So when I tell you that I think the mainstream media (MSM) is floundering as a group, it should come as no surprise. In fact, it is likely to arouse some (gasp) skepticism. There’s no need to fear, the blogosphere is here to back me up.

Mark Glaser, writing for the Online Journalism Review at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Southern California, agrees that the MSM as a whole is a slumbering giant poised for rude awakening by the likes of Yahoo and Google. Yahoo scored a major success with the introduction of Kevin Sites as the anchor to its original content aspirations. Google is changing the rules with each of its innovations, including Google Video and the entangled Google Print.

Entanglements aside, these innovations in content and reporting bely the larger issue of the decline of the MSM. Americans are growing increasingly angry about the failures of the MSM to provide us with the truth of the world outside our borders. But this is a problem long in the works. Back in 2001, there were already murmurs about the lack of reality in news coverage coming out of the world’s largest democracy.

Gallup polls conducted in the US in September 2004 found that 10 percent of adults felt “very confident” in the accuracy of the MSM’s news stories. I am no statistician, but I know enough to tell you that such figures are not doing anything to slow the decline of the MSM. Remember, this is NEWS that we are talking about. You know, the reporting of facts to inform the public. How can you or I or your friendly neighborhood Québécois be expected to support a system that cannot be relied upon to provide simple facts? The short answer: we can’t.