So because I read a lot of news articles, and then, because I must be a masochist, I read the comments, I have recently run across the term “MSM” quite a bit. This is an acronym most often used by extremely conservative commenters as a shorthand reference to “mainstream media,” invariably connoting a liberal bias of the irretrievable and unacceptable kind, and collusion to promulgate that bias through every media outlet in the known ‘verse. “MSM” is spat out in text, as in, “Well, what do you expect from the mainstream media?” in much the same way you might spit out, “Well, what do you expect from a sociopathic methhead bent on the complete and total annihilation of the country?”
Every time I see it, I break out in hives, because, you see, I am allergic to stupidity. First of all, “mainstream” is one word. So if you want an acronym (and oh god, you know they do), it needs to be “MM,” not “MSM.” “MSM” indicates a willful ignorance of English (which is the only language they’re gonna allow in their nation they’re busy with that takin’ back of), by randomly splitting words in the middle to add another letter to acronyms. Every time I see this ersatz acronym, I immediately dismiss the writer as an idiot and move on. They believe in conspiracies and they don’t know how to write their own language; therefore, they have no point I feel compelled to consider.
Secondly, do they not understand the word “mainstream”? “Mainstream” means the most commonly accepted version, whether it’s an educational track or a news source. That doesn’t necessarily make it correct, courageous, or clever, but it IS common. If you’re part of the mainstream, it means you’re part of the largest group, the average Joes and Josephines, for better and worse. You are not on the fringe where the Teabaggers and the treehuggers hang out. If you are mainstream, you are adamantly acceptable to the great majority of folks. (And that should be a big damn hint that perhaps your “moral majority” is…well…not, but alas.) If you’re not down with the mainstream media, YOU are the fringe.
Of course, the rest of us already knew that.