Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Modern journalism

As printed newspapers slowly transform into some internet thing, the question of journalism per se becomes raised more often. Journalism isn't the simple reporting of what happened; it is the recording of what verifiably happened. For instance, the confusion of news coming out of Iran these days is testament enough to that country's lack of bona fide journalists doing their job. When the Wall Street Journal reported on Apple's Steve Jobs's liver transplant, that was a rather extraordinary piece of journalism. John Gruber, on the blog Daring Fireball, covers it well (with a nod from us to the Columbia Journalism Review for finding this article).

Gruber: There are several highly unusual aspects to the Journal’s story. First is that they offer no source for the information — not even an “according to sources familiar with the matter”. But yet they state it flatly as certain fact that Steve Jobs had a secret liver transplant in Tennessee. Blockbuster news with no sourcing whatsoever. To call that curious is an understatement. And, coming in the opening paragraph of a page one story, it could not be a careless omission. More...

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