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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. MileHigh

    MileHigh Moderator Staff Member

    She tried to get him on the phone. Once she did, she told him who she was, what she was looking for. If she had just said she was an old friend and NOT an AP reporter and that their conversation was on the record, then there's a problem. And from all indications, that didn't happen. Because if it did, the Yankees PR machine would have shredded her, and so would have the New York media. And I'm quite certain AP found out how she got this and was OK with it.
  2. spnited

    spnited Active Member

    Does anyone know who Pat Milton is?
  3. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Well-Known Member

    Meat, it comes back to this: Says here that as long as she didn't misrepresent herself to Mr. Steinbrenner, she didn't do anything untoward. Secretary? Not relevant. Flack? Not relevant.
  4. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    I guess I'm kind of a tweener here, since the term "old friend" is indeed a lot more ambiguous than her saying she was his sister or something like that.
  5. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    When I was an intern, a veteran beat writer told me that the way he would get the GM on the phone was to call up and say, "Yeah, I was just talking to X, and we got disconnected..." and he would be patched right through...

    Obviously it's not something you can do all the time, but when you really need to get someone, it's a handy little trick... I know I've done the same thing more than once...
  6. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    I don't have a huge problem with this either... I do have a problem if she misrepresented herself to Steinbrenner, but I know that's not the case...

    You do what you have to sometimes... Good for her...
  7. Mystery_Meat

    Mystery_Meat Guest

    A few points:

    • I'm assuming that nobody representing the Yankees in any official capacity has proclaimed Steinbrenner ill of health. We can speculate, and it certainly seems like he's not the same man he used to be, but the party line is that George is George, right? From their perspective, if they go and say "well, this reporter got to Steinbrenner under false pretenses," then they're in essence saying that he's too far gone to conduct an interview of his own volition. And if you heard THAT from the Yankees, hoo boy. I don't think that their silence on the subject is automatic acceptance. It's possible, but just because they haven't crafted a incindeary response doesn't equate to an implicit thumbs up.
    • Again, if she's an old friend, why doesn't she have more direct access to Steinbrenner? If she told the secretary she's someone else, that's lying. Sorry if that grates on your nerves, but that's what it is. If she gave the secretary her real name with the "old friend" story, then the secretary fails at life, because he or she should know who the reporters on the beat are, or at least be familiar with them.
    • So now we're saying it's okay to lie to people we don't think are important?
    • And we know, as it's been told in the thread, that she immediately came clean to Steinbrenner and told him who she was and what she wanted?
  8. shotglass

    shotglass Guest

    I'm troubled by the "ends justify the means" angle ... I'm troubled by the "hey, it's the Yankees, so they deserve it" angle ... and I'm troubled by the "get over it" angle.

    If you can get the interview without lying or otherwise crossing the moral line, THEN you deserve props.
  9. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    The biggest reason I have no problem with this is Steinbrenner is more than capable of hanging up the phone. If he doesn't want to talk to someone, he's not going to do it...
  10. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    Chass gives us no information about how she portrayed herself to Steinbrenner or what she told her editors about how she got the interview.

    If it weren’t for Steinbrenner’s health, you may be able to convince me that what she did was ok, but he’s a sick old man.

    This isn’t Vinnie the Chin walking around in his bathrobe pretending to be sick to avoid jail. If he weren’t well, George would not allow himself to be portrayed that way.

    If she put the call through, the secretary believed Milton to be an old friend. Likely George also thought this for at least the beginning of the call.

    Under the circumstances, Milton took advantage of him no matter what she told him once she had him on the phone because she can’t be sure what he was able to comprehend.

    If you have a sick or elderly parent/grandparent, you know that there are good day and bad days. Sometimes they are lucid in the morning and confused in the afternoon.

    The fact that he took the call and continued to talk to her doesn’t mean that he knew who she was.
  11. shotglass

    shotglass Guest

    But you're putting the cart ahead of the horse. By the time George decides he doesn't want to talk, the reporter has already done "the dirty deed."

    On the other hand, YankeeFan, the fact that George is getting a little feeble is no more germane to this debate than the fact that it's the big, bad Yankees.
  12. PhilaYank36

    PhilaYank36 Guest

    How about we cut through all this bullshit and unnecessary debating to get to the heart of the matter: lying to get an interview, even if you state who you are to the subject once you have them, is flat-out wrong and unethical. It sets a very bad precedent to future journalists, as well.

    I really don't see any wiggle room in this, at all.
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