Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Myth: Newspapers Are Not Connected to Their Community

The whole essay is well worth a gander

By Curmudgeon

The Standard Examiner has an interesting op-ed guest commentary up on its web page by the editor of the Orlando Sentinel -- -- on how important newspapers still are, including small city papers, because they do the digging necessary to expose problems and corruption and inefficiency in government:
Myth: Newspapers are not connected to their community.
Two of her examples caught my eye: "In Glens Falls, N.Y., a crusading editorial writer for a small newspaper wins the Pulitzer Prize for pounding public officials over secrecy in government.... In Tucson, reporters reveal that the city had essentially wasted $89 million on failed downtown revitalization projects."

Imagine that.

She says something else interesting: "While newspapers have lost staff and gotten smaller, editors have chosen wisely in preserving the watchdogs...."

Can we say that of the Standard Examiner?

Here's how she ends her piece: "A good newspaper is a lamp to its community, shining light in dark places and showing the way. That lamp still burns bright in America's newsrooms."

Is it still burning bright in the SE's "content center" [what used to be its newsroom]?

The whole essay is well worth a gander. Wander over to the SE site and give it a look.


googlegirl said...

Boston Globe Tailors Print Edition For Three Remaining Subscribers

farb said...

The juxtaposition of this idea with this newspaper is a cruel irony.

OgdenLover said...

On the whole, I think we could say that the SE doesn't have watchdogs, it has lapdogs.

Nancy M. said...

What about the recent lengthy
investigative piece that the S-E's Scott Schwebke and Tim Gurrister did to expose the
alleged dirty trick of Davis County political operative Randy Minson? Solid work rivaling anything the Deseret News and the Trib have done. Wondering the Salt Lake papers haven't picked up on it?

Curmudgeon said...

Put up a link?

Nancy M said...

Criminal investigation of independent political consultant expands in Davis County

RudiZink said...

Exactly right, Nancy! And here's the original story from SE reporters Tim Gurrister, Roy Burton, and Scott Schwebke:

Weber seizes computers / Campaign vendor for Davis candidate investigated over email

No doubt about it, Nancy! SE reporters have worked hard to make this story all their own.

And your earlier query is right on! Why haven't the other Northern Utah news organizations been following up on this story?

We've also faithfully reported o this flurry of SE investigatigive jounalism stories ourselves on Weber County Forum... for what that's worth, BTW:

Standard-Examiner: Criminal Investigation of Independent Political Consultant Expands in Davis County

Saturday Morning Emerald City Open Topic Thread

We assure you that this is a story that Weber County Forum will not allow to die, Nancy, despite the inattention of the Salt Lake media.

Curmudgeon said...

Sorry, guys. The story was good, but it was not the result of investigative journalism. It reported the seizure, by warrant, of the consultant's computers. It was a news story, and the SE people stayed on it, but it was not something they uncovered by dint of their own investigations.

Good news coverage is important, and this was. But it's not the same as good investigative reporting.

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