The underlying problem—and the biggest reason that gaffes are perpetually hyped by the media in the absence of evidence that they matter to voters—is that, despite all the cutbacks in journalism, too many reporters are chasing too few stories at this point in the presidential campaign. The incentives for perverse coverage are especially strong when little other news is being made. Editors should consider alternative approaches. Why not devote more resources to investigations, enterprise stories, and down-ballot races, and reduce the number of reporters covering the minutiae of the presidential campaign? We, the readers, will be just fine without them.
United States Project
02:55 PM - June 13, 2012
Do campaign gaffes matter? Not to voters
Overhyped gaffe coverage is a sign that editors should shift resources to other stories
Stop using ‘Brooklyn’ to mean hipster neighborhoods - Elite-oriented outlets typically only cover the borough’s most affluent, Manhattan-adjacent neighborhoods
The Reporters Committee is about to start suing people to help journalists - Katie Townsend joins the organization as its first litigation director
How a Nebraska newspaper kicked off a major prison sentencing scandal - The Omaha World-Herald found that hundreds of inmates were being released early
On media freedom, United Nations plays by its own rules - Months of international crises raises the stakes for reporting on the UN, but investigative journalists remain without a right to information
Keep calm and write a headline worth reading - Ease up on the exaggerations because someday you may need those explosive adjectives when a truly big story lands
Email blasts from CJR writers and editors
“[i]n the wake of the recent scandals, women have been driving the story, providing a perspective that their male counterparts simply cannot”
“Amid a months-long battle with administrators for editorial control … the Playwickian’s faculty adviser was suspended for two days this week”
Apple included language in its first Transparency Report to say that it had not been subject to a Section 215 Patriot Act request. That language is now gone.
Buzzword, buzzword, buzzword. Isn’t the buzzword on your mind now? Perhaps it is on other people’s minds? Read on or you’ll be clueless, dated, and without any friends in the world. Buzzword again!
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.