Tag Archives: journalism ethics

Journalism/Media/Web links for April 27

8 Ways for Entrepreneurial Journalists to Think Like Business People:

“Many, many businesses have failed where the income statement showed things were great, but they didn’t have cash. Cash flow is ‘the lifeblood of your business.’ ”

Bias Or Balance: Media Wrestle With Faltering Trust:

“Five or 10 years ago, the conversation about trust and the media would have triggered different results. But people no longer volunteer so many complaints about reporters making up stories, as they did in the wake of the scandals involving Jayson Blair at The New York Times and Jack Kelley at USA Today. And concern over how stories are slanted no longer comes just from conservatives. It comes from all quarters.”

72 Marietta — I Still Love You:

The Journal and Constitution hated each other then — a deep, healthy hatred that was a beautiful thing. The first time in history when the Constitution out-circulated the Journal was on Aug. 17, 1977, when the morning rag reported Elvis Presley’s death. I never forgave Elvis for dying on Constitution time.”

Terry Gross: What I Read:

“I really don’t keep up with bloggers. I suppose I should feel guilty about that but my goal in life is to get away from the computer. Time spent reading blogs takes away from the time I should be spending preparing for guests. It’s hard when you’re doing a show like Fresh Air and you’re talking to musicians, theater people, actors and experts on every subject. You have to make peace with the fact that you can’t keep up with everything. It’s more information than you can possibly absorb.”

Think Again: The Internet:

“Today’s Internet is a world where homophobic activists in Serbia are turning to Facebook to organize against gay rights, and where social conservatives in Saudi Arabia are setting up online equivalents of the Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice. So much for the ‘freedom to connect’ lauded by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in her much-ballyhooed speech on the Internet and human rights. Sadly enough, a networked world is not inherently a more just world.”

Facebook Further Reduces Your Control Over Personal Information:

“The new connections features benefit Facebook and its business partners, with little benefit to you. But what are you going to do about it? Facebook has consistently ignored demands from its users to create an easy ‘exit plan’ for migrating their personal data to another social networking website, even as it has continued — one small privacy policy update after another — to reduce its users’ control over their information.”


Kvetch of the Week: Obama’s media hucksters

There are times when I’m reading a juicy media kvetch that I don’t may much attention to the byline until I’ve reached the end. Who wrote that?

That was the case today as I came across a piece in Editor & Publisher slamming media organizations for making more than a few bucks off the historic election of Barack Obama. For a moment I hesitated to use this piece because it was written by a former colleague at my paper (we worked in different departments and rarely crossed paths. He covered the military and defense issues, I was a sportswriter. He took a buyout last year; I followed suit three months ago.). But the über-kvetchiness off Ron Martz’ diatribe is too good to be passed up here, earning it the latest Kvetch of the Week honors. A few excerpts:

“Ombudsmen and reader advocates who are supposed to examine individual media organizations rarely do an adequate job because more often than not they are employed by the very companies whose dealings they are supposed to scrutinize. Who is going to take a chance on making the boss angry and being relegated to a dead-end job, or being jobless, at a time when so many journalists are out of work?”

And this:

“It is one thing for private entrepreneurs to get into the business of making a buck off Obama. More power to them. But the media, who have set standards for others, now refuse to live by their own standards.”

Go read the whole thing. My take: I’m not entirely surprised that the press has gone ga-ga over all this, since I’ve lived through plenty of “big” memories in my experience (Braves win World Series, 1996 Atlanta Olympics, Sept. 11th) that my paper and other news outlets jumped on like a dog on a bone. For quite a while we’ve been guilty of going overboard promoting merchandise stemming from a major news event. However, I was taken aback at how expensive some of these trinkets are. Then again, I’m not spending my money on stuff like this given the economy and my status as a newspaper refugee.

Gripes about the coverage of the presidential campaign by The New York Times I found a bit over the top. They took away from detailed descriptions of the media’s milking of the Obama election (and what the L.A. Times has pocketed, for example) that are quite revealing on their own.

But there would have been one less really good kvetch in a piece oozing with them.