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AP Reporter misrepresents herself to get interview with Steinbrenner

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by YankeeFan, May 27, 2007.

  1. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    According to Murray Chass:


    “The words that come forth infrequently from Steinbrenner these days are almost always filtered through the news releases of the ubiquitous public relations man Howard Rubenstein. The other day, however, an Associated Press reporter, describing herself to Steinbrenner’s secretary as an old friend, got on the call list and wound up with a rare interview. Good for her.”

    Um, the guy is old and not in good health. I don’t think lying to the secretary to get through to him is the way to go.

    I don’t have a link to the actual article, but I’d like to know what she told Steinbrenner about who she was once she got him on the line.

    In my mind, this is up there with Connie Chung telling Newt Gingrich’s elderly mother to whisper her answer to her and that she would “keep it between us” as the camera rolls.

    Murray Chass says, “Good for her”. What do you say?
  2. expendable

    expendable Well-Known Member

    I wonder if his secretary was fired shortly thereafter.

    Oh, and I do have a problem with this.
  3. Ira_Schoffel

    Ira_Schoffel Member

    Tough call IMHO. I personally wouldn't misrepresent myself to get to a source. But once she got the Boss on the phone, he certainly knew she was a reporter. And he still said what he said. Heck, he might have been impressed by her spunk.

    In college, we used to have this picks column, where we would get a guest picker every week. One week, someone got the ridiculous idea to get Steinbrenner for a firing theme.

    Sure enough, someone got him on the phone, and he played along like a champ. I think he knew it took balls to call him for something so trivial ... and maybe in some weird way, he respected that.
  4. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Active Member


    Good for her.
  5. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    Rather than just calling it, “a rare interview Thursday night from his office in Tampa,” should she let her readers know how the interview came about?

    It comes across as some kind of hard earned exclusive – and that’s not what it was.
  6. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Active Member

    It's her job to get the interview, not to write an explanation of how she got it.

    She did her job well. Get over it.
  7. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    We can agree to disagree about how she procured the interview.

    Can we agree that she shouldn’t be gossiping to Murray Chass about how she got past Steinbrenner’s secretary? She’s now made herself part of the story. As such, she should be called upon to defend/explain/justify her actions.

    If she doesn’t address it in a follow up article, someone else in the press needs to at least ask the question.

    Anyone who follows the Yankees knows how reclusive Steinbrenner has become. Reporters stake him out and write articles about the strong-arm tactics of Yankee security in denying them access to him.

    Steinbrenner giving an exclusive to the AP is curious at best. The fact that it was achieved through a misrepresentation makes it newsworthy.

    Will anyone else follow up on it?
  8. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Active Member

    No, since it's highly unlikely she was doing so.

    Two possibilities:

    • Somebody asked her how she got the interview. She answered truthfully. It's not gossip --- it's colleagues talking about work product. But that's not the likely way it came out ...
    • Nobody asked her anything. Rather, somebody on the Yankees beat asked a source in the organization how the AP reporter got the interview.

    Apparently Mr. Steinbrenner is not nearly as paranoid as his bulldogs, nor is he as paranoid as his franchise's fanboys. Get over it.
  9. Moland Spring

    Moland Spring Member

    Obviously, as soon as this interview happened, the gossipers on the Yankees beat went crazy. Everyone is pissed because they play by the rules and haven't talked to him in years. So Chass is taking a serious shot at her in his column -- which is lame. Readers don't care.
    For those of us on a college beat, we've been through this plenty of times. SID says coach isn't available... except for ESPN who has traveled down for a big feature.
    I hate that.
  10. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

    Would you be so quick with your praise if someone called an addled old Grandma and sold her $20,000 worth of aluminum siding she didn't need?

    How do we know she ever identified herself to him as a reporter?
  11. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Active Member

    Apples. Oranges.

    She did her job well. Get over it.
  12. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

    Sorry - Steinbrenner's an addled old man. And the question stands: How do you know she ever identified herself to him as a reporter?
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