More than ever we need the press to lead the debate. Lead it with investigative stories and analyses that are grounded in intellectually honest reporting. We need the press to trust in the authority its reporters and editors earn through just-the-facts reporting that leads to a deep, contextualized understanding of the issues. Not so long ago there was a national debate over the question of good news versus bad news in Iraq. The reporters on the ground were saying that the situation was even worse than their reporting can convey. Here at home, the White House was insisting that freedom was still on the march, and its trumpeters in the partisan media were railing against the “liberal” MSM and its alleged desire to see America fail in Iraq. Today, all but the most deluded know that the reporters on the ground were right. They are the true authorities on the situation in Iraq. Many have been there longer than the military personnel who rotate in and out. They have written about it more, thought about it more, and studied it more. Why shouldn’t they be leading the debate?
Behind the News
12:04 PM - October 9, 2006
The Press Must Lead the Debate, Not Just Reflect it
As the role of the press continues to be hotly debated, one thing remains clear: it has never been just a passive observer.
Stop trolling your readers - We know you’re only doing it for clicks
Des Moines Register prepares for a ‘very stressful’ newsroom restructuring - Editor Amalie Nash speaks on turnover, transformation, and a virtual reality adventure
PBS pulls ads from Harper’s Magazine after critical essay - Piece argues public broadcaster has fallen under the sway of political influence and outside money
Should all journalists be on Twitter? - Reasons to take up or forgo the 140-character platform
The Tennessean is borrowing reporters from other Gannett papers - Music columnist Peter Cooper is latest journalist to part ways with Nashville paper
Email blasts from CJR writers and editors
“From the moment he took over The Post newsroom in 1965, Mr. Bradlee sought to create an important newspaper that would go far beyond the traditional model of a metropolitan daily”
“Among the challenges that make racism so difficult to fix, and so odiously constant, is that white people often don’t even recognize when they’re saying or doing something that cuts their black colleagues to the bone”
After 40 years, every issue still features a weed centerfold
Mark Warren “spoke with 90 members of the House and Senate about what’s gone so wrong in Congress. Sometimes it got a little emotional.”
Greg Marx discusses democracy and news with Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute
Who Owns What
A report from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Questions and exercises for journalism students.