Know-It-All’s Bias

Over at The Atlantic, Lane Wallace (“author, pilot, and entrepreneur” ) describes how she came to realize that sometimes reporters (particularly, she notes, veterans of a particular beat) don’t ask certain seemingly key or critical questions, questions that might help them better understand the subject before them, because, as she observed, they “already had a story angle in their heads and were focused only on getting the necessary data points to flesh out and back up what they already thought was the story.”

(Totally already knew that).

Wallace quotes a friend “who’s an editor at the New York Times,” who said, “‘I actually think we should rotate reporters’ beats every two years, so nobody ever thinks they’re too much of an expert at anything.’”

Who would you like to see swap seats at the Times?

Liz Cox Barrett is a freelance writer and graphic designer in Kalispell, Montana. She worked as a newspaper journalist in Denver and Kalispell for 20 years.