In an interesting rejoinder to attacks against the New York Times and other media by the Trump administration, the newspaper is running an ad called “The Truth is Hard,” which is slated during the Academy Awards on Sunday.
The ad opens with a white screen and the words “the truth is,” followed by dozens of different contradictory phrases from the last months, both written and spoken. It begins with: “The truth is our nation is more divided than ever,” but segues into statements such as “alternative facts are lies,” “the media is dishonest,” “women should dress like women,” and “women’s rights are human rights.”
It concludes: “The truth is hard to find. The truth is hard to know. The truth is more important now than ever.”
The 30-second spot is running just two days after the Times, along with and CNN, the Los Angeles Times, the Huffington Post, Buzzfeed and other news organizations, were barred from attending a press briefing at the White House on Friday. It’s the first time the newspaper has run a TV commercial since 2010, according to the Associated Press.
“The idea is to be a part of that discussion about what does it mean to find the truth,” newspaper branding exec David Rubin told CNNMoney. “What does that mean in a world of ‘fake news’? And what is the role of journalism and journalists in that process, and what is the role of reader in supporting that journalism?”
Rubin said the Academy Awards was chosen for the spot because it’s a “high-profile media moment.”
The commercial will be presented in other time slots as well, and will also run in print.
The New York Times has been repeatedly targeted by Donald Trump as “failing” and branded as a purveyor of “fake news.”
A different kind of truth defense was launched earlier in the week with a new catch phrase by the Washington Post on its website: “Democracy dies in darkness.”
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