Investigative Journalism Done Better, Faster And Cheaper Without Newspapers

from the let's-get-real dept

There have been a series of ridiculous articles lately claiming that, with the collapse of some newspapers recently, somehow investigative reporting and local coverage won't work, meaning an era of corruption and the collapse of democracy. Fortunately, some are demonstrating the fallacies underlying these proclamations of doom.

Jay Rosen has been running an interesting experiment trying to find out just how many truly local stories an average newspaper includes in its paper, between all the national wire service stories. A look through a recent Seattle Times issue showed a grand total of seven locally produced stories. And a look at an issue of the Chicago Tribune found a total of eight locally produced stories. We're not talking about huge numbers here.

And, in fact, the finding of eight stories in the Trib comes from Geoff Dougherty, a guy who created quite a stir in newspaper circles when he claimed he could provide the equivalent (or better) local coverage of the Chicago Tribune for just $2 million a year, and provided the spreadsheet to back it up. And he's not just talking in theory. He's doing it. Today. For much less than the Tribune (which is bankrupt).

He's not the only one either. Talking Points Memo has been quite successful with its investigative reporting, which does a lot to leverage its community to help out in the process, while still employing full time journalists who are doing tremendous investigative reporting -- which should only improve as better tools are created to enable more to be done. The first link in this paragraph also discusses another example, the Voice of San Diego, which does local investigative reporting, and was funded by a bunch of local businesses that felt there wasn't enough investigative reporting locally.

Those who say that this can't be done apparently aren't looking around. Sure, some of these experiments may fail, but it's about time we got rid of two myths:
  • Myth 1: Newspapers put tons of money and resources into investigative journalism. They don't. And never have.
  • Myth 2: Only newspapers can do investigative journalism.
Not all of the new business models will work out, but some will, and we'll likely find the new models actually work much better than what we have today (which, let's face it, hasn't been that good in investigating things like corruption).

I was on a panel recently for journalists and PR people, and someone raised their hand to ask how people could "put the genie back in the bottle and charge for information again." The problem is that the question itself is wrong. There's no genie and there never was a bottle. People have never paid for the news. Newspapers never spent that much on investigative reporting, and they rarely did a particularly good job of it, other than an occasional big story in an attempt to win a Pulitzer. People can pine about that mythical genie and bottle, or they can start focusing on all the opportunity out there that will be coming out of some of these (or other) experiments.


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  1.  
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    Weird Harold, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 11:32am

    My local market has three and a half major newspapers (hard to explain) plus 2 freebie dailies and a bunch more freebie weeklies. Each one of the major newspapers presents a special section on a subject every weekend, recently things like people who have been forced to live in the subway, city workers sleeping on the job instead of working (one group of 10 employees filled 9 small potholes in the road in a day), and so on. So it is clear that at least some money, some resources, and some print space is being allocated, at least in this market, to a more in depth coverage and investigative reporting.

    We aren't talking Watergate, more like leaky water main. But there is actual content out there that isn't 5 paragraph news.

    That being said, I am sure that if you remove all over the overhead of operating a news room, all the built up union expense, the building, the staff, the editors, the proof readers, and all those other expenses, that yes, you could do more with the same money or the same with less money. That is obvious.

    What isn't obvious is what journalistic standards would be applied. One of the keys in print media is that a certain amount of time is taken to check and re-check the articles, by an editor (city or section, depending on how it works at a given place), spelling and grammar checked with a proof reader, and so on. Reporters can't run a story without backup, quotes, checked sources, etc.

    The internet is easy, because just like this site, you can express your opinion around the news and make the story anything you want it to be. Most of the internet is opinion, not pure fact and double checked sources. So investigative journalism might happen, but will there be anything to back it up, any way for the public to be confident that the material is a reflection of reality, and not a smear campaign? Matt Drudge is one of the pioneers of internet "news hording" and investigative journalism, but because he answers only to his conservative advertisers, his site is mostly packed with news and opinions slanted in one way only. Is it really news, is it really journalism, or just a nice way to couch opinion in a way that people think it's the truth?

    The newspaper masthead actually counts for something, it's a question of trust.

     

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    Mike, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 11:55am

    Weird Harold

    I think Harold is from Montreal :)

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 11:58am

    NSS.

     

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  4.  
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    :Lobo Santo, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:00pm

    Re:

    Heckle!
    .
    .
    .
    Heckle!
    .
    .
    .
    Shoot, I think I'm doing it wrong. Hey weird harold, what's the best way to heckle a putz?

     

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  5.  
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    Chronno S. Trigger, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:06pm

    Re:

    "The newspaper masthead actually counts for something, it's a question of trust."

    As long as the trust isn't lost over time as it has been for a lot of news outlets.

    A good commenting option on a news site would help with the trust since anyone could comment on an incorrect part.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:10pm

    Hey Investigative Journalists!

    I want to know if there's any truth to this video. It could be the news story of the year!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAaQNACwaLw

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:24pm

    Re:

    ROFLMAO. Newspapers are bastions of apolitical news reporting? These are the same newspapers that endorse political candidates? The same ones that allow local businesses and politicians to pay 'reporters' to write fluff pieces? Fact checking? Only enough to make sure they don't get sued. Wow, just wow. Are there any other people on the planet you live on?

     

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    John Platypus, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:24pm

    Is #1 serious?

    I mean, since WHEN are newspapers running stories not influenced by some opinion? "Journalistic standards"? Is that for real? Let's ask Fox News, I guess. Or the Times. How about CNN, I'll bet THEY'RE impartial... not that much, depending on who you ask.

    Who is naive enough to believe newspapers are actually about the _truth_? They're about a convenient truth.

    BTW is he REALLY that worried about the lack of copydesk?

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:30pm

    " Is it really news, is it really journalism, or just a nice way to couch opinion in a way that people think it's the truth?"

    And newspapers aren't guilty of the same thing? Try reading the New York Times then tell me they don't spin opinion as factual news.

     

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    PRMan, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:33pm

    I see a problem...

    >How can the Tribune spend millions while our online news organization spends less than $2 million?

    >It's simple. The new news organization doesn't have an advice columnist, a suburban bureau, an auto writer, or a fashion critic. It does one thing, and it does it better than anyone else: Provide Chicago residents with the information they need to make smart decisions about public affairs.

    Where they are wrong is in thinking that the public actually CARES about the local criminal reports or board meetings. They don't. That stuff is boring to most people.

    Most people read the advice columnist, suburban writer, auto writer, sports writer, fashion critic, movie reviews, comics, etc.

    Sounds like they can have the boringest newspaper in Chicago for only $2 million per year.

     

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  11.  
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    Bruce A., Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:35pm

    "The newspaper masthead actually counts for something, it's a question of trust."
    And why would it be any different for electronic media? If they run trash and don't check their facts, you don't read them and they fail.
    The Print media sphere is full of useless garbage as well, a la Weekly World News, National Enquirer, etc. Are you going to claim these publications have integrity because they put ink on paper?
    No matter the delivery method, it's still up to the user to separate fact from fiction.

     

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  12.  
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    TheStuipdOne, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:42pm

    Journalistic Standards

    One of the big isses with the all online new services is like WH points out what standards, editing, reviews, fact checking actually occurs there?

    I say it isn't realy an issue at all. If I decide that techdirt is worthless then I know Mike Masnick is to blame and I'll avoid reading his work or listening to him speak. Same for actual news reporting sites. The authors are real people working a real job. Just because they don't print the article doesn't mean it isn't fact checked and peer reviewed. In fact if errors escape to the article published online, then commentors can point it out and the atricle can be fixed in minutes. Did the author overlook a significant fact? commentors point it out and the article is improved (by the comment alone or by a revision). Make a huge mistake? Print a retraction in hours, remove the offending article (or fix it) even faster.

    And then you see things that can't be done in print. Write an article about a bank robbery and include security videos, audio from 911 calls, full transcripts of witness interviews, artistic renditions of the perps that update as more information is gathered. Write something later that references the robbery? Include a link to the previous article.

    Only downsides that seems to stand up to scrutiny?
    1) I'll need to find something else to pack by glassware in when I move
    2) Paper and Ink is a little easier on the eyes

     

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  13.  
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    Dave, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:54pm

    Myth 1 isn't completely true

    Newspapers did once do a large amount of investigative journalism. This was before the press release became the bastion of information it is for papers (and other sources of news) today.

    Before that, reporters had to investigate news just to know what was going on. In doing that, they uncovered many things companies and politicians and others didn't want to be found out. However, once the press release was created, reporters found it was better to take that and modify it as an article than do their own digging.

    That also began the era of PR officers within companies trained to spin. They handled the questions from reporters and gave them answers that would suffice, relieving the reporter from digging.

     

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  14.  
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    Jason Buberel (profile), Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:54pm

    Re: I see a problem...

    Boring, but perhaps the only profitable newspaper in Chicago?

     

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  15.  
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    Jason Buberel (profile), Mar 18th, 2009 @ 12:57pm

    Re: Myth 1 isn't completely true

    The role of PR in disseminating information about a company is an interesting perspective on this.

    In the pre-PR-age, did reporters mostly talk to company officers (board members, executives)?

     

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  16.  
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    John Zhu, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 1:00pm

    Regarding the Jay Rosen Tweet

    As I corrected Jay Rosen via Twitter (which I'm sure far fewer people saw than the number who saw his original tweet), the "eight locally produced stories in the Tribune" thing is misleading if not flat out wrong: http://is.gd/nUNY

     

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  17.  
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    Sergio, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 1:00pm

    Re:

    Journalistic standards should not be a concern. Online news will go through the same process that newspapers did when they first came around. The poorly written news sites with inaccurate information will lose readers to the higher quality sites and fade away, just like all the bad news papers have over the years.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 1:45pm

    Re: I see a problem...

    You said: "Most people read the advice columnist, suburban writer, auto writer, sports writer, fashion critic, movie reviews, comics, etc.

    Sounds like they can have the boringest newspaper in Chicago for only $2 million per year.


    Why would I pay for opinions about live, suburban activities, cars, sports, fashion, movies, comics, books, or anything else? Everyone and their dog has an opinion, a blog, and the inclination to make the two combine in a way that's just as interesting as the paid version.

    Seriously, man.

     

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  19.  
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    Weird Harold, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 2:06pm

    Re: Journalistic Standards

    The problem isn't it techdirt is right or wrong (or just packed full of opinions that support certain corporate client's positions) but the rapid echo of misinformation online.

    One of the things if you watch Mike's posts here is that his supporting evidence is often other people's opinion columns and even his own posts. Now imagine 200 sites quoting techdirt, and 200 other sites quoting each of those sites, and so on. Mike's information is a mix of fact, opinion, and a chosen perspective on copyright. If that gets spread around enough, people may actually take it as fact rather than the personal point of view it really is.

    Mike doesn't have to submit his posts to an editor, or a fact checker, or have someone make sure that the story is balanced or fair. Anyone who reads the blogs knows it. But there is strong chance he is quoted elsewhere, and that site may lead it's readers to think it is fact.

    Repeat a lie often enough, and people will start thinking it is the truth. Repeat an opinion often enough, and people will start thinking it is reality.

    Oh yeah, all those things about the robbery can already be done on broadcast video. Nothing new there.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 5:31pm

    Re: Re: Journalistic Standards

    "Repeat a lie often enough, and people will start thinking it is the truth. Repeat an opinion often enough, and people will start thinking it is reality."

    Ahh, so that's what Weird Harold is up to. Makes sense now.

     

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  21.  
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    Gunnar, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 5:32pm

    What people care about

    "Where they are wrong is in thinking that the public actually CARES about the local criminal reports or board meetings. They don't. That stuff is boring to most people."

    As someone who works at a local newspaper, I can tell you that crime news and board meetings are almost always the most-read stories in our paper. Though, that's probably only because we don't track the Obituaries on the website.

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 6:04pm

    Re: Regarding the Jay Rosen Tweet

    As I corrected Jay Rosen via Twitter (which I'm sure far fewer people saw than the number who saw his original tweet), the "eight locally produced stories in the Tribune" thing is misleading if not flat out wrong

    Actually, skimming the stories at
    http://archives.chicagotribune.com/2009/feb/23/local
    I find even fewer than 8 truly local Chicago stories there. Oh sure, there are more than 8 stories there, but most of them aren't actually "local", unless you consider places like Florida to be "local" to Chicago. Talk about misleading.

     

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  23.  
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    Recovering Journalist, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 9:25pm

    Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    Seriously, Weird Harold is making valid points. Fox News is slanted and lame yet many people swear by it, as is that Web site that Michele Malkin writes for (I'd say Weekly World News but it's not that....too interesting.)

    It seems like most of the people bitching here don't a) read newspapers or b) understand how journalism works.

    Matt Drudge didn't break anything, he just went with a story without getting additional corroboration. It's a choice, but also one that could have backfired and been wrong. But then again, if he had been wrong, "Hey, I'm just a Web site ...

    As for people fleeing places with wrong information -- nope, they stay if they like their slant. Hence people reading Masick's stuff. I mean, he really hates the MSM. Why? Heck if I know. Maybe the j-school kids wouldn't let him play their reindeer games.

    But there are at least 13 or so people who agree that the MSM is evil, biased, elitist and anything else that sounds interesting.

    Yes, "news" will become more opinion masquerading as fact because that's easy to do. Spending all day calling, digging, reading through SEC filings, takes time and effort, it's not easy to post more than once a day. (And to not be paid for it except by 5 cent clicks? Not a lot of takers.) As a full-time journalist I could do once a day, twice a day on light days -- but it definitely takes up time.

    Then the fact-checking, the constant calls to make sure everything's correct before it goes live ... it's not for everyone. Everyone who has a blog cannot do it. Some may be able to, those that are well-funded or have a sugarmama/daddy....but we'll see.

    The only good thing I see out of this, once journalism goes down to BlogTown, is that eventually there will be a desire for real journalism again and $$$ for it.

    It's all evolution, Weird Harold. Plus, hard times are innovative times.

    Anyway, mediawhore that I am, I now work at a bloggityblogblog -- which, I can honestly say, is way less work for the money -- but I'm riding this gravy train.

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2009 @ 9:42pm

    Re: Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    It seems like most of the people bitching here don't a) read newspapers or b) understand how journalism works.

    You mean, how it used to work? Back in the day?

    As for people fleeing places with wrong information -- nope, they stay if they like their slant. Hence people reading Masick's stuff.

    Like yourself?

     

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  25.  
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    Mike (profile), Mar 19th, 2009 @ 1:02am

    Re: Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    . Hence people reading Masick's stuff. I mean, he really hates the MSM. Why? Heck if I know.

    Huh? I don't hate the mainstream media at all. What gives you that idea? I have nothing against them at all, and want them to thrive. That's why I keep pointing out examples of how they can create better business models, while steering them away from bad business models.

    I think many of the big media publications do quality reporting work, and that's great. A lot of what we write here is built on their reporting.

    I'm confused, as a supposedly "recovering journalist" how you could possibly read what I write and claim I "hate the MSM." Yikes.

    But there are at least 13 or so people who agree that the MSM is evil, biased, elitist and anything else that sounds interesting.

    I actually don't think that at all either. I think people who scream about media bias are being silly.

    Why are you projecting on me false statements?

    Then the fact-checking, the constant calls to make sure everything's correct before it goes live ... it's not for everyone. Everyone who has a blog cannot do it. Some may be able to, those that are well-funded or have a sugarmama/daddy....but we'll see.

    Again, did anyone say otherwise? But did you not notice that all of the sites I'm talking about do real reporting, with fact-checking and real editors? Or did you not even read at all (quite a journalist you must have been!) and simply assume what was written? No one's talking about some random blogger replacing newspapers.

    So why build the strawman?

    Anyway, mediawhore that I am, I now work at a bloggityblogblog -- which, I can honestly say, is way less work for the money -- but I'm riding this gravy train.

    Huh. So you're basically admitting what a bad journalist you are. Fantastic. Why should the platform matter? If you were a real journalist it doesn't make a difference.

     

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  26.  
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    Robert Lopez, Mar 19th, 2009 @ 5:40am

    Question

    Has the author of this post about investigative journalism ever done investigative reporting? If so, provide us some examples.

     

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  27.  
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    heycori, Mar 19th, 2009 @ 7:01am

    Re: Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    Thanks for pointing these things out, Weird Harold and Recovering Journalist.

    People who dismiss or are just ignorant of the time, effort and overhead needed to do quality journalism also probably think the FDA wastes way too much time verifying if food and drugs are safe for us, or don't see why it takes years for solid academic research to be defended and published.

     

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  28.  
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    John Zhu, Mar 19th, 2009 @ 7:14am

    Re: Re: Regarding the Jay Rosen Tweet

    Here's the list from the link I provided, culled down to only stories written by Tribune staff that day. Take away the columns and the stories about the Oscars that day, and you still have a lot more than eight stories about Chicago. And yes, I do count sports, because well, this is just a hunch, but stories about Bears, Cubs, and White Sox probably do count as news that Chicagoans care about. Is sports as important as investigative reporting? Of course not. But look at Chi-Town Daily News' content, and you'll see that not all their stuff is investigative reporting either. And look at the site's Chicago News section and note the dates on the stories, http://tinyurl.com/cy45qa. I went back as far as 10 days, and none of the days had eight stories. Most ranged anywhere from two to six or seven.

    The other point about this is that even Geoff Dougherty specified that his count of eight were "local news stories". Somehow that has been turned into "locally produced stories", which is not the same thing. The former refers to a specific category of stories, while the latter makes it sound like the entire Tribune staff only produced eight stories that day. This matters if we are measuring the production capacity and budget of the two enterprises. The latter statement implies that the two organizations are producing the same number of stories with vastly differently budgets, when in reality the Tribune is producing a lot more stories with its bigger budget. We can argue that the Tribune should shift more of its resources toward a particular category of stories, and that's fine, but we can't distort the statement to say that the Tribune is producing less or no more than a competitor w/ a much smaller budget. I'm not trying to put down Chi-Town Daily News' work. I'm just pointing out that while we can debate what kind of stories the Tribune should do, what's not up for debate is that its bigger budget does result in more stories.

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  29.  
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    uncle bernie madeoff, Mar 19th, 2009 @ 7:40am

    Re: Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    Journalist my ass. Left wing hack with agenda, you mean. I don't know what they teach in "journalism" schools, but it has to be as meaningful as a degree in black studies or feminist thought. Come to think of it, probably all taught by the same guy.

     

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  30.  
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    Recovering Journalist, Mar 19th, 2009 @ 10:04am

    Re: Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    And what better business models are those, Masinick? Are you in a SF highrise sitting on a pile of money? Nope, you're hustling like everyone else.

    The reason journalism is in such a state today, and most businesses, is because it's now mostly owned by highly leveraged corporations.

    Corporations a) aren't known for their innovation, but instead have layers of management who are not creatives (hence why most laid off employees are not in management but grunt workers who don't make that much) b) are interested in creating a higher profit margin year after year for investors, come hell or high water even if it makes no long-term sense, c) journalism execs, as a whole, fail to understand the Internet, web publishing and taking the steps to create the most cost-effective means to achieve reasonable goals. (I mean, if they even knew what their goals were, which they don't.)

    Add the immense debt that most corporations are under, there's no room to even be creative with money like they could before. No credit, no loans -- desperate times. Hoard your gold!

    Anyway, love that some journalists are still out there sparring.

     

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  31.  
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    Mike (profile), Mar 19th, 2009 @ 10:56am

    Re: Question

    Has the author of this post about investigative journalism ever done investigative reporting? If so, provide us some examples.

    Ah, I love it. So no one can comment on the *economics* of journalism unless they're a journalist?

    Let me ask you, has the author of the comment (since you seemed unwilling to call me out by name, I'll do the same for you) about business model journalism ever run a publication company? Does he have a degree in business or economics? If so, provide us some examples.

    See how dumb that is? To say that those who understand economics and business can't comment on the *business* of investigative journalism unless we've done investigative journalism seems pretty silly, doesn't it?

    So... now... did you have any response to the *actual* points raised in the post? Or do you want to deny that those other publications are doing investigative journalism?

     

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  32.  
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    Mike (profile), Mar 19th, 2009 @ 10:59am

    Re: Re: Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    Haha! Awesome.

    You're quite the journalist. I point out how you're 100% wrong in your claim (i.e. "Mike hates MSM journalists!") and you don't bother responding at all. You ignore that you were wrong and jump on something totally different. Beautiful.

    And what better business models are those, Masinick?

    Apparently you don't read this site very much. If you're lazy, I'm not here to do work for you.

    The reason journalism is in such a state today, and most businesses, is because it's now mostly owned by highly leveraged corporations.

    I don't disagree with that being a part of it, but that's hardly the only reason.

    Anyway, love that some journalists are still out there sparring.

    Sparring? Geeze...

     

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  33.  
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    Recovering Journalist, Mar 19th, 2009 @ 4:38pm

    Re: Re: Re: Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    Firstly, you don't have any "better business models," if so, we'd all be swimming in dough, wouldn't we? Yes, like every other "business consultant" you can claim to have a "better business model," or "system that works," or whatever spin you want on it.

    I mean, you're kind of tech, but you're really more of a marketing guy. Those aren't the guys with the real ideas, they're more just the evangelists of the real ideas made up by some other guys.

    Secondly, you have to be of some interest for me to cover you as a journalist. Thirdly, simply because I ignore you doesn't mean I agree or disagree, I'm just ignoring.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34.  
    identicon
    Gene Cavanaugh, Mar 19th, 2009 @ 9:08pm

    Investigative reporting

    In support of what Mike is saying, I have found several articles in various newspapers that were thinly-disguised reprints of, for example, ScienceDaily.com articles. Since I don't spend a lot of time looking, I would bet that the 3-4 I have found is a very small percentage of the "investigative" reporting in newspapers, even today.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    icon
    Mike (profile), Mar 20th, 2009 @ 12:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Good God, you guys are worse than Fox News

    Firstly, you don't have any "better business models," if so, we'd all be swimming in dough, wouldn't we?

    Some of us are doing just fine. You're not? Well... perhaps that's your fault.

    Yes, like every other "business consultant" you can claim to have a "better business model," or "system that works," or whatever spin you want on it.

    I'm not a business consultant. Never have been. A real journalist might have checked that, wouldn't he?

    I mean, you're kind of tech, but you're really more of a marketing guy.

    Huh? What does that mean? And what does that have to do with anything?

    Secondly, you have to be of some interest for me to cover you as a journalist.

    Again, huh?!? Trust me, I don't want you to cover me.

    Thirdly, simply because I ignore you doesn't mean I agree or disagree, I'm just ignoring.

    But, you're not. What you "ignored" was me proving you totally wrong. Ignoring that isn't about "agreeing or disagreeing." It's about your credibility. Of which you apparently have none.

    No wonder you're a failed journalist.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    identicon
    Robert Quigley, Mar 21st, 2009 @ 4:58pm

    Ironically ...

    The most interesting stories right now on Chitowndailynews.org are the headlines under the "Feed Room," which are aggregated from the Chicago Tribune and Sun-Times.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    identicon
    Karen Page, Mar 21st, 2009 @ 6:39pm

    Real journalists?

    Are we talking trained journalists here? Those with college degrees and such? Because a "citizen journalist" with a blog to me is someone I trust as much as a "citizen doctor."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 21st, 2009 @ 7:33pm

    Re: Re: Re: Regarding the Jay Rosen Tweet

    Those are mostly just wire stories rewritten by local writers and not local stories at all.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 5th, 2009 @ 8:10am

    Re: Re: I see a problem...

    check out their site and you'll see they have an article written by the editor saying it hasn't worked like they hoped it would and they're exploring other models...

    something tech dirt should have checked on perhaps...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    identicon
    Chrissi, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 7:14pm

    bored

    I think that an investigative reporters job is fun and exciting. When I'm old enough I want to be 1.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
    identicon
    alin van truth, Mar 31st, 2010 @ 7:00am

    the truth

    Operation Crooked Code Update: Petru Cladovan

    The feds, prosecutors, and judge finally admit and conclude amid all set forth charges that Petru Cladovan is and was innocent AND ALL CHARGES WERE DROPPED today 3/30/2010. Petru Cladovan was found that he never had intent and/or knowledge of any bribes and all accusation were misinterpretation of twisted perfected lies by so called "expeditor", who was forced to start operating, as a mole with the feds, and with whom orchestrated this entrapment only to reduce her possible charges sentence of 130yrs if convicted. This same "expeditor" ironically under oath admitted and testified that Petru Cladovan had no implication nor knowledge of her illegal business transactions and that all business between her and Petru Cladovan were 100% LEGAL and legit!!! It is only fair to say that after two long years of false accusations, wrongfully indicted, and defamation not limited to by the government and by media to Petru Cladovan and his family, the truth and innocent prevails.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42.  
    identicon
    Nancy S. Kyme, Sep 6th, 2013 @ 10:38am

    We need a line between creative writing and investigative journalism

    Anyone can become a journalist. I've written an award winning novel which has thrust me into the company of other writers. Most call themselves free lance journalists. Most want to write that novel. There is no line between the two. Many are responsible for the 'content' of today's news. In their hearts, they just want to tell a good story. They have encouraged me to write articles, which I have, because I'm building a platform. Am I now a journalist? My publisher chose to market "Memory Lake" as biography because it is 95% true. It needed the 10% to weave an entertaining story. This seems to be the same standard applied to all writing. If its 90% true, its true. This should not be the standard for news. To the irritation of Registered Dietitians, anyone can say they are a nutritionist. The RDA is trying to regulate who can use this term. I'm not a fan of more government regulation, but perhaps the great schools of Investigative Journalism should take the initiative and frame a debate for setting credentials on who reports the news. Ethical standards could be applied to ensure actual facts are reported, not just an opinion. Perhaps some initials are needed after a name, CIJ, "Certified Investigative Journalist". When we want entertainment we can visit a blog. When we want news we could visit a CIJ website.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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