It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

The Inverted Pyramid

page: 1
8

log in

join
share:

posted on Feb, 12 2011 @ 09:55 PM
link   
This is just a quick overview of a common technique of the media. I am writing this thread to point out how a rather mundane quote can be amplified for attention as a catchy headline and pertinent info either buried or pushed to the back of the article or story.

A very popular format is The Inverted Pyramid based on a reader's tendency to want the facts early in the story then their interest wanes and they tend to lose interest or quit reading. Often the crux of the factual information is contained within first few paragraphs, then background Information follows and the reader can continue at their discretion. In our time strapped society this format continues to be very popular and used by all media outlets in print, on-line, radio and TV news mediums. Often people read the shocking headline, get a little of the story and move on without all of the facts.

The story format is called the Inverted Pyramd for obvious reasons.


Here is a rather short case in point:

McConnell says Obama agenda is `over'




Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell says President Barack Obama's legislative agenda "is over" and that Congress must act now to make deep cuts in federal spending. The Kentucky Republican told a GOP gathering in Louisville on Saturday night that Obama is doing "Clintonian back flips" in trying to portray himself as a moderate. McConnell said it's unclear whether the president's new tone is "rhetoric or reality." He said many Republicans are "prepared to do business" with the Democratic president, but that Obama's credentials on spending and the deficit are "horrible." McConnell said cutting federal spending won't be painless but has to be accomplished. McConnell's comments come weeks after he worked with the president to push through an extension of Bush administration tax cuts, including for top-earners.


Opening sentence: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell says President Barack Obama's legislative agenda "is over"

Closing sentence buried at the end:McConnell's comments come weeks after he worked with the president to push through an extension of Bush administration tax cuts, including for top-earners.

LINK TO STORY

Please be aware of techniques such as this when gathering information for your own use and sharing on ATS and ALWAYS CONSIDER THE SOURCE. Now more than ever there exists much bias.




posted on Feb, 12 2011 @ 10:35 PM
link   
I don't think this is necessarily a bad thing, its just a smart way of getting people to read what you have to say.



posted on Feb, 12 2011 @ 10:45 PM
link   
reply to post by Jake93
 


As I pointed out, it is effective and popular. I am trying to illustrate that in this case the "catchy headline" was somewhat contradicted by the last line in the story. The fact that the person in the story was a very part of the agenda that he so publicly decries.

It is incumbent on reader to ascertain all of the facts and upon the journalist to offer them in the story. Ideally not at the end as a "button" in this case. But perhaps earlier on in the story to show the overt hypocrisy. It is rife on both liberal and conservative media. Just using this story as an example.

Sorry if I failed to illustrate that. Thanks for pointing it out.



posted on Feb, 12 2011 @ 10:50 PM
link   
reply to post by kinda kurious
 


If I am going to tell you what happened in my day I don't start off by telling you a bunch of minute details. I would start with the big general picture. I had a great day! Or. My day was alright. Or. I had a terrible day!

Then we go more specific- give names, examples, descriptions, etc....

Authors use the same technique. I was also taught this technique in high school for writing persuasive essays. It's a popular technique, and logically it makes sense.
edit on 12-2-2011 by freedish because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 12 2011 @ 11:05 PM
link   
reply to post by freedish
 


Yes I agree it is effective when employed fairly. You make a strong case. Please see my post above yours as I did a poor job in OP stating my point in this particular case. Sorry.



posted on Feb, 12 2011 @ 11:19 PM
link   
I applaud you for bringing these subtle programmings to light, in the future I would like to see more of these information structures further explained. I've noticed that during a big controversy being discussed smaller sometimes more important news will be shown in smaller print at the bottom of the screen. I suppose that would fit perfectly into the inverted pyramid structure aforementioned, right?

s&f



posted on Feb, 13 2011 @ 11:53 AM
link   

Originally posted by kinda kurious
reply to post by freedish
 


Yes I agree it is effective when employed fairly. You make a strong case. Please see my post above yours as I did a poor job in OP stating my point in this particular case. Sorry.


Sorry- I guess it is being somewhat misused....



posted on Feb, 24 2011 @ 05:37 AM
link   

Originally posted by kinda kurious
 

... In our time strapped society this format continues to be very popular and used by all media outlets in print, on-line, radio and TV news mediums. ...


I agree that it’s important to understand the process and trust the source. The technique discussed here is just one of many average writing tools. When propaganda is produced, someone has to write it. Propaganda writers train like other writers about technique, tools, etc. However, not all writers who use inverted pyramid are propagandists.

Although I agree with OP Kinda Kurious’s take that this format is “popular,” it is more of the writer’s tool than the person or persons who control media.

Inverted Pyramid is only a format. When talking about text headlines and slugs, it’s important to get the reader’s attention. Leads and nut graphs usually support the headline. The body and conclusion finish out the rest. It all comes in the toolbox. As the saying goes, “Don’t hate the writer, hate the publisher.” Or maybe it’s, “Don’t hate the publisher, hate those rich guys who pay the publisher.” Don’t hate the player, etc.

Well, don’t hate the player for using the Inverted Pyramid format to tell the story. It is not how they REALLY lie or deceive people; it is only how they package the lie. Some writers who use inverted pyramid are assholes, but not all writers who use it are assholes. It is just a bucket for word slop.

I do not agree that the format is meant to deceive people.

SENSATIONALISM and OPINION are the tools used to puff up a piece. The bait, if you will. The stuff asshole “news” writers are made of. Sensationalism makes a story bigger than it is. Opinion mixes fact with personal ideals and beliefs.

Sometimes ideals and beliefs outweigh facts to readers, writers, editors and wealthy people who control media. Opinion is fine when the top of the page reads OPINION. When writers construe fact with sensationalism and opinion, this is where news people fail to be news people and become propaganda pitching ass puppets. I emphasize puppets, as some writers in media are ultimately tools in the tool boxes of the rich.

Sensationalism and opinion are more dangerous than the Inverted Pyramid format.



posted on Feb, 24 2011 @ 06:56 AM
link   
reply to post by danats
 


Thank you for your cogent reply. You obviously know of what you speak. I AGREE with EVERYTHING you stated.


I had tried in a couple of subsequent replies to emphasize that it was the article in question I was perhaps more suspect of than the technique itself. Regardless it is refreshing to get an erudite perspective from a new member. We are lucky to have you in our midst. Welcome!



new topics

top topics



 
8

log in

join