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Publisher's Summary

Based on the meticulous research of the news watchdog organization Media Matters for America, David Brock and Ari Rabin-Havt show how Fox News, under its president Roger Ailes, changed from a right-leaning news network into a partisan advocate for the Republican Party.

The Fox Effect follows the career of Ailes from his early work as a television producer and media consultant for Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush. Consequently, when he was hired in 1996 as the president of Rupert Murdoch’s flagship conservative cable news network, Ailes had little journalism experience, but brought to the job the mindset of a political operative. As Brock and Rabin-Havt demonstrate through numerous examples, Ailes used his extraordinary power and influence to spread a partisan political agenda that is at odds with long-established, widely held standards of fairness and objectivity in news reporting.

Featuring transcripts of leaked audio and memos from Fox News reporters and executives, The Fox Effect is a damning indictment of how the network’s news coverage and commentators have biased reporting, drummed up marginal stories, and even consciously manipulated established facts in their efforts to attack the Obama administration.

©2012 David Brock, Ari Rabin-Havt (P)2012 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"It's the truth, stupid. That's Brock, Rabin-Havt and Media Matters' message and it's a pretty darn good one." (James Carville)
“Media Matters tells the truth - and then spreads the truth far and wide. They are a leading and effective voice in combating misinformation. This latest book, by founder David Brock, makes clear the threat that incendiary journalism poses to our democracy.” (Nancy Pelosi)
“This pointed study of modern politics is both a must-read and a cautionary tale." (Senator John F. Kerry)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Fox news lack of journalistic integrity clarified

An excellent review of Fox "News'" bias for one political party, with many examples of archived dishonesties and their unfortunate effects regarding political discourse by feeding a susceptible portion of the general public material tailored to satisfy the confirmation bias and cynicism with spin and blatent lies.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Pretty good - just a liberal confirmation bias boo

Any additional comments?

If you're listening to this book, you're probably already a Fox News loathing liberal. This book satisfies the craving for confirmation bias, but isn't much more than that. Worth a read. I picked up some "golden nuggets."

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A solid expose hampered by a poor narrator

Any additional comments?

Overall a lot of people probably see this as muckraking or merely there to preach to the choir, but on some level the latter is almost all Media Matters can ever do. That isn't their fault- people tend to insulate themselves from opposing views- it's a problem on both ends of the ideological spectrum- but it does mean that this book may only provide some additional nuggets to the already convinced. It's still a pretty interesting piece and given that Fox is still certainly incredibly relevant, still worth reading for anybody interested in a progressive take on Fox, though there is certainly some things that have come up that might warrant a new, updated edition. The only issue is that the performance really drags it down a bit- I haven't listened to any other performances by the narrator so I don't know if this is just Bob's style or if it was an affectation specifically for this book, but the frequent at times almost random-seeming pauses really grated on me since it felt like it made the book lose punch at times. Still a very interesting listen, but it could have been "great" instead of "good" if there had been a different narrator.

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I thought I knew how awful FOX news was

If only FOX news was as "fair and balanced" as this book. If you really care about a "fair and balanced" presentation of the facts you must read to this book. I don't expect anyone to change their opinion about the best way to spend our tax dollars or what societal goals are desirable as a result of reading this book. But do read this book so you will realize the FOX has an agenda that has nothing to do with being fair and balanced in their presentation of the facts.

I listen to NPR and BBC news every day. I read Glenn Greenwald and other progressive bloggers such as The Rude Pundit. But I also regularly read other conservatives such as David Brooks, Peggy Noonan and Charles Krauthammer. I was already aware of the study which showed that people who primarily got their news from FOX were significantly more likely to believe bogus "facts" (e.g., about Iraq and WMDs). So I thought I knew how much FOX news skewed reality for their audience. This book made me realize the situation is far worse than I knew.

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Preaching to the Choir

Would you listen to The Fox Effect again? Why?

Yes I would listen again to make a list of the names of some of the players to do additional research on their previous political dealings.

What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

the appalling arrogance of Ailes, and the horror that his behavior is seen as appropriate to a certain sector of society in these perilous times.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

I found the narration clear and effective but slight slower paced than I would have preferred

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

You won't believe what you're hearing, no, seriously, you won't believe it; because you've already made up your mind!

Any additional comments?

The people who most need to read this book will never buy it, Tea Partiers, ignore your confirmation bias and buy this book!

5 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Nicholas
  • New Hartford, New York, United States
  • 04-09-12

Exposes FOX'S Real Agenda

What did you love best about The Fox Effect?

Rips the veil of fair and balanced off of Fox. Factually presents the distortions and misrepresentations that are designed to mislead and confuse the viewer.

What did you like best about this story?

After reading The Fox Effect it is easy to understand why Fox viewers are the most under informed about the facts.

Have you listened to any of Bob Dunsworth’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

N/A

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Is Roger Ailes a danger to America?

Any additional comments?

I highly recommend all Fox viewers read this book.

2 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Charles
  • Maysville, KY, United States
  • 05-03-12

Mediocre Analysis, Poor Performance

Would you try another book from the authors and/or Bob Dunsworth?

No

Would you be willing to try another one of Bob Dunsworth’s performances?

Not my perference

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

As stated in the discription, it showed Fox News to fall short of journalistic principles.

Any additional comments?

It is a muckraker calling a muckraker a muckraker, It showed a correlation between Fox News and the Republican Party, but no cause and effect.

4 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Steven
  • PHILADELPHIA, PA, United States
  • 05-21-12

A Look Behind the Scenes at Fox

If you've ever wondered how Fox became a podium for the right wing in the U.S. then this is the book that explains it. This a well researched, interesting book that examines the history of Roger Ailes, and how and why he crossed the line from journalism, to right wing Republican advocacy.

2 of 6 people found this review helpful