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What happens when there are no newspapers? David Simon knows...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by zeke12, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

  2. Simon_Cowbell

    Simon_Cowbell Active Member

  3. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    Kinda jumps right out at you, doesn't it?

    Here's part of the ending, for those uninclined to click:

    Half-truths, obfuscations and apparent deceit -- these are the wages of a world in which newspapers, their staffs eviscerated, no longer battle at the frontiers of public information. And in a city where officials routinely plead with citizens to trust the police, where witnesses have for years been vulnerable to retaliatory violence, we now have a once-proud department's officers hiding behind anonymity that is not only arguably illegal under existing public information laws, but hypocritical as well.

    There is a lot of talk nowadays about what will replace the dinosaur that is the daily newspaper. So-called citizen journalists and bloggers and media pundits have lined up to tell us that newspapers are dying but that the news business will endure, that this moment is less tragic than it is transformational.

    Well, sorry, but I didn't trip over any blogger trying to find out McKissick's identity and performance history. Nor were any citizen journalists at the City Council hearing in January when police officials inflated the nature and severity of the threats against officers. And there wasn't anyone working sources in the police department to counterbalance all of the spin or omission.
  4. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Effing brutal.

    But thanks for posting, Zeke.
  5. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    This state, try to get a police report and some departments will laugh at you... rules? What rules?
  6. sg86

    sg86 Member

    I feel like Season Five of The Wire takes on a completely different meaning having read that.
  7. I've been banging this drum for years on here. The citizen journalism brigade thinks that it's all about catching Obama talking about "clinging to guns and religion" or ferreting out Bobby Jindal's half-truths during his rebuttal the other night. And those were good gets by the blogosphere, no question about it.

    But the citizen journalists aren't keeping watch over Baltimore or Chicago or Detroit or Dallas police departments. They aren't camped out at city hall in New Orleans or Minneapolis or Flint, Mich., or Gary, Ind., or New Haven, Conn.

    To a lot of these bloggers and citizen journalists, current events is practically entertainment, a delightful reality show they can use as a vehicle to show how brilliant and clever and snarky they are.

    I think that, at their best, the "citizen journalists" perform a tremendous service, servine as a watchdog on the watchdogs. But they can no more replace professional journalists than the 1960s hippie counterculture, which certainly influenced policy and public opinion, could start up its own government.
  8. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    The next blogger to do the midnight cops run will be the first.
  9. There was a great scoop in the L.A. Times this week about how the CIA was getting information from a source in Bosnia in the 1990s who is now under trial for ethnic cleansing-related war crimes. This is what's at risk right now.
  10. clintrichardson

    clintrichardson Active Member

    Yes, the corrupt types in government, especially at the middle and lower stratas, will barely have to try anymore.

    i wonder if it soon will fall upon specifically aggrieved parties—a victim of police brutality, or some company screwed on a no-bid contract—to be taking evidence to the internet and trying to draw attention to themselves.
  11. Some Guy

    Some Guy Active Member

    Wow. Just wow.

    PS -- Intitially, I had a typo, and spelled "woe" instead of "wow." That would have been fitting, too.
  12. I Should Coco

    I Should Coco Well-Known Member

    Powerful (and rather depressing) stuff. Thanks for posting it, Zeke.

    While few newspapers are fully staffed enough to do this kind of vital reporting, at least the possibility still exists. I won't hold my breath waiting for bloggers to do this kind of investigative leg work.
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