yellow journalism

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The forerunner of what we know today as sensationalist journalism. Developed at the turn of the 20th century in the US, the phrase was originally used to describe the journalism of Joseph Pulitzer, but became synonymous with the newspapers of William Randolph Hearst. At this time, when newspapers were the main source of news in America, it was common practice for a newspaper to report the editor's interpretation of the news rather than objective facts. If the information reported was inaccurate or biased, the public had little means of verification. Newspapers wielded much political power and, in order to increase circulation, the publishers of these papers often exploited their powerful position by sponsoring a flamboyant approach to news reporting that became known as ‘yellow journalism’. Hearst, for example, is often accused of having started the Spanish-American War of 1898 by inflaming opinion using this type of approach.

Subjects: Marketing.

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