Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe answers questions during a short press interview Kazuhiro Nogi/Getty Images

假新闻和有偏见的新闻

东京—访谈就是防不胜防。如果一位“无良”访问者想要挖掘某个答案或观点,他完全有权力去编辑、操纵甚至改写访问对象的话。正因如此,我一直会仔细阅读我被媒体引用的言辞。但对于电视或广播采访,我认为这样的扭曲会比较困难。我错了。

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不久前,一位日本某电视节目的代表要求采访我。这个节目与一家偏自由派立场的报纸有关,采访的内容是首相安倍晋三的经济改革战略,即“安倍经济学”。我被采访了大约一个小时,我的回答被做进了在工作室录制的一期专家讨论中。

结果和我预想的不一样。平心而论,对于讨论组成员否认安倍经济学的最新成果、持有货币政策无法提振经济,反而可能突然引起恶性通胀的奇怪观点,我并不是十分震惊。这样的论调由来已久,尽管货币政策驱动的低通胀复苏在美国、欧洲和日本进行的十分良好。

但节目严重扭曲了我的原话。在我的采访中,我强调了安倍经济学的成功之处。我指出,劳动力市场的强势和企业利润的上升都是安倍经济学的未竟的遗产,尽管安倍政府面临了政治挑战。节目却只播出了我两分钟的采访,强调了潜在政治挑战的部分而不是安倍经济学的巨大成功。

近几年来,人们大量关注“假新闻”——即传播广泛的完全错误的信息,它们通常通过社交媒体或其他在线平台传播。但我的最近经验突显出另一种危险:有偏见的新闻,即策略性地编辑新闻,从而支持记者、编辑或节目制作者的观点。

这类报道甚至可能由传统新闻组织制作,它们可能造成巨大的破坏性,至少对政治领导人是如此。毫无疑问,安倍的政治立场很容易受到有偏见的新闻的影响。

比如,接个月前,安倍在东京秋叶原区的群众集会上发表演讲。一些听众显然是为了捣乱,不断地发出嘘声和刁难。最后,安倍大喊道:“我不是为向你们这样瞎嚷嚷的群众演讲的!”第二天,他的这番话被广泛报道;但听众的行为只字未提,让读者产生了首相完全是主动向日本公民爆粗口的印象。

类似的扭曲也出现在对日本众议院调查指控听证会的报道中。指控来自前文部科学事务次官前川喜平(Kihei Maekawa),说安倍操纵了一所由其密友主持的大学新设兽医系的决策过程。不但安倍本人否认了指控,前大阪大学教授八田达夫(<>Tatsuo Hatta)和前爱媛县知事加户守行(Moriyuki Kato)也作证整个决策过程是公平合法的。

但许多媒体组织,包括两家大报《朝日新闻》和《每日新闻》持续报道着所谓的丑闻——对八田和加户的证词只字不提,而对前川的指控长篇累牍地报道。

这类有偏见的报道可以轻易地让选民反对领导人。对日本来说,幸运的是选民没有被骗。安倍刚刚在10月22日举行的大选中赢得压倒性胜利,轻松让其执政联盟重新掌权。

相反,在美国,有偏见的新闻报道,特别是社交媒体上的报道,对选民产生了强大的影响,也让政治极化达到了前所未有的程度。总统特朗普尤其如此,他一再抨击媒体对其政府的报道——平心而论,常常是错误的批评。

特朗普本身便是著名的问题新闻推手,绝对算不上媒体偏见的无辜受害人。但当今美国政局确实突显出,世界各国的选民都需要能够获得关于国内和国际上正在发生什么的完整可观的报道。惟其如此,他们才能真正得到民主制度所要求的赋权,做出关于集体未来的知情的选择。

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