Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

The “conflation” that Brian Williams confessed to began in 2003

Other NBC people were involved from the beginning. In his weekly column David Carr of the New York Times wrote this about NBC’s Brian Williams troubled tale of getting shot at in a helicopter over Iraq in 2003. It’s useful to note that Mr. Williams initially reported the story fundamentally as it had happened — […]

Brian Williams has not led. What’s an anchor for?

Why wasn’t Williams the one interviewing the military veterans who could help him correct his faulty account? That’s what a leader of a news division would do— I mean, if he is really a leader. Part One: Feb. 6, 2015 I figured out what’s bothering me about the story that has engulfed NBC News, “after […]

A (brief) banking theory of newsroom trust.

The less help you give me in the tricky act of extending my trust to you, the more likely you are to wind up with a negative balance. In this short post I want to clear something up about how trust operates in a news operation. I am going to use examples from the New […]

When to quit your journalism job

When the sales people are happy to sell what the newsroom is happy to make, there you have a well-run editorial company. So measure your own newsroom’s misery by its distance from that (ideal) state. These notes were inspired by recent events at the New Republic and First Look Media, articles like this one, and […]

“I had just arrived in the Chicago bureau and I needed a story…”

Many years ago I was sitting around in a hotel bar with some journalists who were telling tales, and one of them started an anecdote this way: “I had just arrived in the Chicago bureau and I needed a story…” I stopped listening at that point, but not because he was boring. Something struck me […]

How to be literate in what’s changing journalism

In my ‘digital thinking’ class, the goal is for students to emerge fully literate in the changes affecting journalism. Here are the main currents and trends that I expect them to master by the close of the term. For each, they should understand: What it means, why it’s important, and where things are going with […]