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Is Canzano being unethical?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by statrat, Aug 15, 2007.

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  1. statrat

    statrat Member

    There has been a minor stir this week up here in the Northwest. John Canzano, Oregonian sports columnist, is taking a gig with radio station 750 KXXL to host a daily two-hour talk radio show in addition to his writing duties with the Oregonian. The radio station is owned by Paul Allen, owner of the Trail Blazers and constant target for John. One of Portland's Alt-weeklies, The Willamette Week, came down on him pretty hard this today. I've met John a few times now and my opinion of him has risen on each occasion, but I don't know quite what to make of this. It should be noted that he had a weekly radio show on a rival station a few years back that bombed, and has been doing daily segments on a drive-time show for the past couple of years. Is this unethical, or is he justified in taking the opportunity to earn an extra 80K a year?

    Here is Canzano's announcement on his blog:

    Here is the Willamette Week story:
  2. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

  3. statrat

    statrat Member

    Sorry about that, didn't notice I was late by ten minutes. Thy will be done moddies.
  4. Big fish, little pond.
  5. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Well-Known Member

    Of course it's a conflict of interest. The appearance alone is a glaring ethical problem. When are newspaper editors going to stick up for the A-job and say no to this stuff? I think the NY Times prohibits this sort of thing, right? Run your own ad campaigns to promote your guys, sponsor an Oregonian sports show on a station not owned by a franchise owner or just tell your columnist that he has to choose -- without the column, maybe the station wouldn't even want him. Doubt they'd want him if he were pounding the small colleges beat or minor league hockey.

    Canzano is a class act and a good guy, but that isn't the point. He can always stand accused of pulling a punch as long as he's on the team owner's payroll. If the Oregonian can't find someone who will say no to Paul Allen's $$$, then it should close up shop. This arrangement sounds like something out of the 1950s, to be honest.
  6. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    I think he's fine as long as he doesn't eat the food.
  7. broadway joe

    broadway joe Guest

    Classic conflict of interest. There's nothing that either Canzano or Blazers management can say that can change that. Very disappointing that Canzano would take the job, and that the Oregonian would allow him to.
  8. friend of the friendless

    friend of the friendless Active Member

    Sirs, Madames,

    Conflict. Classic. Textbook.

    YHS, etc
  9. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    There is a lot of blurring of the lines. KNBR is a part-owner of the San Francisco Giants. And if you think it doesn't cause the hosts there to pull their punches, you hadn't heard about the guy who got canned for criticizing the team a year or so ago.
  10. DougDascenzo

    DougDascenzo Member

    I agree with your sentiment, Mizzou, and having read Canzano for years now, I certainly take him at his word that he won't water down his commentary or change his stances based on who's signing his paycheck.

    But the appearance of the conflict of interest is there. And no matter what he, the Oregonian, or the radio station in question says, appearance is everything when it comes to ethical situations.

    It's too bad Canzano, an engaging figure in print who I'm sure would do just fine on the radio, chose to go this route, and couldn't work a deal with another station in town. 80 grand is 80 grand, but is it worth losing your credibility?
  11. broadway joe

    broadway joe Guest

    Yeah but the hosts on KNBR aren't journalists. What Canzano is doing is like the Giants' beat writer for the SF Chronicle taking a job with a Giants-owned station, and still covering the team for the paper.
  12. friend of the friendless

    friend of the friendless Active Member

    Mr Dascenzo,

    Further to your pt:

    Appearance of conflict = conflict. One and the same. Potential conflict = appearance of conflict = conflict.

    It's here in ye olde backyard. Funny, any other dept 'cept sports and the needle be twitchin'. Sports? Go Blazers. Or Blue Jays. Or whatever.

    YHS, etc
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