John Temple, the editor of the Rocky Mountain News, has a pretty lively blog (disclaimer, if it’s needed, I used to work for Scripps, the same company that employs Temple). Here he takes on E&P editor Greg Mitchell’s supposed liberal bias in the guise of media criticism.
Who says a big city, MSM executive can’t grok blogging?
As for Mitchell — I interviewed him once, circa 1991, when his book Campaign of the Century came out. I won a press club award for the resulting article, in which I concentrated on what our own paper’s archives said about the 1934 California gubernatorial campaign. I met Mitchell again a year or so ago at a convention.
I’ve met Temple once or twice, too.
Both nice, smart guys.
Does Temple have a point? Read his post and compare and contrast with this quote from Mitchell’s Wikipedia entry:
In an interview June 28, 2004 with the Echo Chamber Project, Mitchell discussed the duty of news reporters to be “skeptical” and not tilt coverage either to the right or left. He cited coverage of the build-up to the United States war in Iraq as an example of skewed coverage.
He said the tone of coverage by news media “all our coverage on all subjects—is not to be partisan or not to be left or right or anything like that. But we believe in the—what should be the main principle of journalism, besides being accurate and fair, is to be skeptical—to raise questions, to not take what officials say as the gospel truth—unless it’s really proven—if there’s documents.”
At any rate, I think the real news here is that Temple isn’t afraid to be himself in his blog. Authenticity is essential to a good blog, and that is an attitude many MSM editors and reports, I think, still find uncomfortable.
He does need to post more frequently, though.