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View Diary: Question is, what DO we need them for? (151 comments)

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  •  It isn't easy being on the news anymore... (3+ / 0-)

    Most of the journalist, real journalists, are gone, having lost their jobs or left in frustration.
    My brother is one who has stuck it out. over the course of his career he's been to Hartford (PM Magazine), Tucson, Baltimore, Spokane, San Luis Obispo, Bangor, Albany, Eugene, and now Boise.
    Through it all he's kept his head held high, even in the toughest times. He's had news directors who believed "There are two sides to every story"; who when faced with pure evidence (like no WMDs in Iraq) insist it is the "liberal" media getting it wrong. He's had reporters who don't read a newspaper or watch news on TV.
    And he's watched as bubble heads (both male and female) come and go with no other interest than being on TV and maybe moving up to some job with more visibility...not to be a better journalist, not to get a story right, not to craft a story, nothing more than to be famous.
    Sometimes I wonder why he stays. Except he's GOOD at what he does. No, wait, he's not good, he's GREAT. The guy's got NINE Emmy awards, and Edward R. Murrow, and an Iris award. Some of the Emmys are for documentaries he's done, back when stations spent money on that ind of thing. And a recent story at the new station he's at is being talked about for next year's Emmy awards. he's only been there since December, and already he's produced, and written a few stories most stations can only dream about.
    And yet, he's stuck in a red state where the local populace still think Obama's a Muslim terrorist, saddled with a news director with a Jeckle-and-Hyde personality, being asked to attend a seminar on how to write news (seriously? The guy's got NINE Emmys, he hardly needs a course in how to write for TV - he ought to be teaching it!).
    Journalism today is a tough business. The corporate overlords, who know nothing about journalism, don't care about truth, facts or good writing, only ratings.
    I was in the business too (Sports Illustrated) but left in the purge of the early 90's when consolidation was the rule and thousands lost their jobs. I got out at a time when the traditional line separating church and state in journalism (i.e. editorial vs. publishing) was being blurred and MBA's (perhaps the most worthless degree I can think of and one of the reasons we're where we are today) started deciding content via focus groups and ratings.
    We live in a nation becoming increasingly ignorant. A steady diet of Fox News, and stations/networks (like CNN) who follow their lead has done the electorate a great disservice.
    Journalism is dead (well maybe on life-support). And it's a damn shame.

    Isn’t it ironic to think that man might determine his own future by something so seemingly trivial as the choice of an insect spray. ~ Rachel Carson, Silent Spring ~

    by MA Liberal on Tue Mar 12, 2013 at 07:43:50 AM PDT

    •  And another thing... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MA Liberal

      ...the "news" aspect of the gas price topic reminds me of similar news topics that get too much attention.   The stock market went up, the stock market went down....the weather will be sunny, the weather will be rainy...the school year is starting, the school year is ending, etc.

      What they have in similar is that they are focused on very short-term trends that require very little original analysis.  

      As a corollary, we have stories about other cyclical topics but only when they have negative movement.  e.g., Local crime rates are up (but we rarely hear that they go down)...gas prices are up (again, it's more rare to hear when they drop.)

      It seems very formulaic and predictable.

    •  Sorry, posted my comment in the wrong lace. (0+ / 0-)

      Had just read (and rec'd) your comment and clicked on the wrong link to start to compose my comment.  If it seems non sequitar-ish, it sure is!  Sorry again.

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