The news media are re-considering the rules of journalism under the Trump administration, after a weekend of “alternative facts” and a debate over crowd size at President Trump’s inauguration.

Many journalists covering the new administration have made it clear that they think the new administration will require heightened scrutiny. But now, some are going further, and saying that traditional media practices need a page-one rewrite.

“[W]e need to develop new rules that adhere to the core values of honesty and respect for our audience,” wrote Buzzfeed Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith in the New York Times on Monday. “That means debunking falsehoods, and being transparent with readers about our process of reporting. Sometimes, it means publishing unverified information in a transparent way that informs our users of its provenance, its impact and why we trust or distrust it.”

The “unverified information” was a reference to the still-unsubstantiated report that Buzzfeed published this month containing lewd details and allegations about Trump’s personal life.

Smith’s call for “new rules” was an echo of something Times media columnist Jim Rutenberg said two weeks ago, after Trump hosted a press conference and hit CNN for publishing its own story that referenced the salacious report (though CNN did not provide the raw details, as Buzzfeed did).

“They’re going to have to decide how much they want to abide by Mr. Trump’s decision to selectively quarantine colleagues whose coverage he does not like,” wrote Rutenberg. He said “a new strategy is needed to cover” the new president.

Though there are no official numbers on attendance for Trump’s inauguration, Trump and his team pushed back on media reports that it numbers were down from previous inaugurations. White House press secretary Sean Spicer made a public statement Saturday that it was “the largest audience ever to witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe.”

Many reports said Spicer’s claims about the inauguration were false, citing lower ridership on Washington’s subway system than President Obama’s inauguration, and photos that showed wide open spaces on the National Mall for Trump’s.

The fight moved David Uberti at the Columbia Journalism Review, a journalism trade publication, to call on his colleagues to “ready themselves and the public for four years of such misinformation, not only by calling out falsehoods early and often in individual stories, but also contextualizing them within Trump’s long history of actively distorting facts.”

Sisters no more

Also from the Washington Examiner

Two months before the Women’s March, white women voted 53 percent to 47 percent against Hillary Clinton.

01/24/17 12:04 AM

Washington Post media critic Margaret Sullivan declared that, “The traditional way of reporting on a president is dead.”

“White House press briefings are ‘access journalism,’ in which official statements — achieved by closeness to the source — are taken at face value and breathlessly reported as news,” she wrote Sunday night. “And that is over. Dead.”

After Trump’s transition press conference last week, Politico’s Jack Shafer said reporters should begin thinking of their jobs like combat and that “the carriers of press cards ought to start thinking of covering Trump’s Washington like a war zone, where conflict follows conflict, where the fog prevents the collection of reliable information directly from the combatants, where the assignment is a matter of life or death.”

If the press plan to rework the way it does business, the Trump team has signaled it’s also ready to make some changes. After meeting with CIA officials the same day, Trump said he’s in a “running war with the media.”

And in an interview Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” top Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway told the moderator, who was criticizing Sean Spicer, that it may be time to “rethink our relationship” with some in the news media.

OMB pick Mulvaney will have to answer for past statements on the Pentagon's 'slush fund'

Also from the Washington Examiner

The overseas contingency operations account is meant to fund U.S. missions overseas.

01/24/17 12:01 AM

George Soros found 'justice was not for sale' in Jefferson County, Colorado

Top Story

The billionaire political activists won in most of the D.A. races he spent money on, but not here.

By Todd Shepherd

01/24/17 12:01 AM

Source link

About the Author:

Leave a Reply