I recall studying journalism in college when discussions came up about the notion of “yellow journalism” and how a man …
You certainly don’t hear newspaper editors talk like this anymore. Then again can you blame them? Under the gun by …
Sometimes I miss working in journalism. Not the high profile sniping that we read in the newspapers or the reports …
It’s offensive when politicians try to convince us of something that they’re not. I once had this experience with a Republican state senator in California when, as a newspaper reporter, I pinned him down on his votes to raise taxes via something called the Vehicle License Fee. His answers to my questions sounded an awful lot like Sen. McCain’s protests covered by the Yuma Sun, or Nancy Pelosi’s “We have to pass the (health care) bill so you can see what’s in it.”
The only way to turn this around is for publishers to cease and desist the notion and practice that newspapers web editions should be a free commodity. That right there tells the public that you don’t think you have a product worthy of consumption. It also tells advertisers that you KNOW your product isn’t worth the money you charge them to advertise. Is there any wonder why actual newsprint subscriptions continue to drop when it’s easy and free to get your news online?
Government doesn’t guarantee anything, and certainly not a free press. The great danger I see in the idea covered here is that it puts government more in charge of the Fourth Estate than it does to guarantee the health of America’s watchdog, which over the past several decades has aged into a lap dog that should have been euthanized long ago.
As for the comment about the day of the local, ambitious newsroom being gone, don’t explain that to the host of small, local weeklies out there who rely upon local reporters, or their own one-man show, to provide the editorial content, photos, ads and everything else that goes with building a newspaper.
Even worse, Kiernan tries to paint a dooms-day approach to his piece by alleging that all of us will somehow pay if newspaper drop their AP subscriptions because the Associated Press offers so much more than just “free” stories for newspapers to pick up.
For starters, those stories aren’t “free.” Not only do the newspapers pay for the privilege of running AP wire stories, but many of those newspapers actually WRITE the stories that AP then picks up and distributes. I’ve had stories I’ve written for one daily newspaper picked up by the AP and broadcast across their global network. AP didn’t pay me and I’m sure AP didn’t pay the newspaper that was employing me, but the newspaper I worked for was certainly paying AP for the privilege of carrying AP stories on their pages.
The two school girls who were attending the same American high school, but from different hemispheres, each saw snap shots of history and were able to provide a perspective no American could ever get from simply watching the evening news. One girl talked about the birthday party she was attending that was interrupted by the physical destruction of the Berlin Wall. She and her friends lived in East Berlin at the time and were otherwise occupied in the celebration of a friend’s 16th birthday when someone told them “the Wall is down.” To hear her explain that moment in her own words was priceless. I still recall her using words such as “euphoria” and other descriptive phrases to paint a picture of the emotions running through their minds as all they ever knew prior to that moment was a divided Europe.
The one part of being a journalist that always fascinated me was simply listening to people. There’s a vast wealth of things to be learned from every-day people — not those we see on television or read about in magazines or newspapers even, but simple folk, who’s lives were impacted by history. As a reporter I loved to get that information out of people and put it down on paper for others to read.