Tough times call for tough answers from reporters

Monday, September 29, 2008

By: Sara Crouse

Increasing concerns with the American economy has changed the average news viewer. Today’s viewers have become more skeptical of current news stories. Sometimes reporting a story isn’t quite enough for viewers.

Many viewers are turning to opinionated news sources such as Mr. Cramer from the TV program “Mad Money” for an insider’s tip on the economy. Reporters now have to put their own twist on a story.

Opinion news provides many viewers with a chance to further explore their own beliefs, which is relevant in a time of turmoil for the markets. Viewing a contrasting opinion in news engages the mind and leads to active discussion amongst its viewers. Discussion of the current bailout plan is a hot commodity these days. No longer are the stock market graphs, at the end of the nightly news, what people want to view. We already know it doesn’t look pretty.

The nightly news, although it serves a generic purpose, seems to be lacking in its relevancy to viewers. Neutrality in the nightly news just isn’t enough for worried watchers. People want facts and they want more than just the basics to help reassure them through difficult times.

There has been a significant trend in reporters turning to the details on many current issues with the economy. The New York Times reports,

“Mr. Cramer found himself having to explain arcane financial concepts like credit-default swaps to an audience that was double its usual size and spooked by the market’s moves.”

Whether we agree with Mr. Cramer or not, its a blessing to hear someone has a plan.


Hate speech going too far

By: Shauna Agan

While doing research for another class, I learned about a court case involving the Westboro Baptist Church. This church is famously known for protesting certain events and relaying the message that God hates homosexuals and because of homosexuals the world is cursed.

Because of the First Amendment rights in the U.S. Constitution, media is allowed to speak out and express their opinion openly. The Internet has been a convenient source for media to relay their message to the public.

This is why sights such as that of the Westboro Baptist Church titled and are legal in the U.S. On the reverse side, there are also sights out there such as where people on the opposite end express their feelings about Fred Phelps, the leader of this church group.

There are also many other Internet Web sites promoting hate towards individuals, organizations, or items of interest. With the Millenial Age group of people, more and more Internet sights are being made for this reason.

Should these sights be allowed?

These groups and individuals have the First Amendment right to freedom of speech, so under the U.S. Constitution they are definitely allowed to express their opinions. However, where does the line get drawn so the Internet is not just a means to promote hatred towards different groups?

The Internet is a great source of media. However, soon it is going to be used only as a means to legally discriminate against people rather than for news and information to be received.

I believe that the Internet should be regulated more so Web sites such as these are monitored and used as news rather than a way to promote hatred.


A final 'New York' Sun set

By: Quinn Albrecht

The New York Sun is set to publish its final paper on Tuesday September 30. The paper was started in October 2001

The paper was established with two goals in mind. One was to offer its readers a different prospective than the New York Times, and to make a profit. 

With a lot of economic woes in the past day or two, it is understandable that somethings like this might happen, but who would have guess they would happen so soon.

This sudden shut down of a huge paper just adds stress to a market that is already seeing signs of trouble.

Quite a few people are loosing their jobs, some have even turned down jobs at larger papers to stay with the Sun.

It is sad to see a up and coming outlets for the news fail like this, especially in a time when we need the news more than ever.


Editing strikes back

By: Adrian Aitken

A couple of weeks ago Barack Obama appeared on the O'Reilly Show for an interview about the candidate's issues and the upcoming election. Unfortunately as ABC News was covering the television spot, the newsgroup edited the footage just right to make Obama's statements on the Iraq War different from reality.

Again controversy surfaces as another news group commits the same offence. MSNBC's news anchor Andrea Mitchell reported on the recent interview between Bill Clinton and Tom Brokaw.

During this interview Brokaw wanted to know if Clinton would endorse Obama the same as he had previously done with John McCain. Clinton replied with a fairly long statement, but when the clip was re-aired on MSNBC Clinton's answer seemed to be hollow and unenthusiastic.

The cropped footage was aired during two different news programs on MSNBC and has shown that the media has few boundries. In my last blog on this subject I said that a hidden agenda must be present in some of these shows. I was willing to accept that from Fox News and CNN, but now it would seem no where is safe for an unbiased, non-party viewer except for maybe CSPAN. If the news is to be trusted I believe more objective reporters ought to be on the air than these which speculate and spin.



By; Sarah Keller

There was an article in USA TODAY by Craig Wilson on punctuation day about… punctuation! This article made me laugh because the author discussed how bad he was with punctuation, particularly commas, semi colons, and exclamation marks, that was what his whole article consisted of.

I have to admit that the reason I found this article so funny was because I can completely relate with him and his difficulties to use proper punctuation marks. The main reason I normally get points taken off of papers is because of the editing, other wise known as correct uses of punctuation.

It brought some relief to me to know that there is at least one professional journalist out there who is as terrible with punctuation as I am. We both know what it feels like to get torn apart by editors for not using correct punctuation, and we both feel as though we were absent the day in school when the teachers taught us how to properly use commas. So I just want to say thank you Wilson for making it so I am not the only journalist in the world who feels incompetent with their punctuation marks.


Tabloid Journalism

By: Taylor Browning

After talking tabloids in class today I was curious as to how much actual 'news' was written in them. They seem to have the less than professional journalism stereotype compaired to large newspapers but some of their stories were a lot more serious than I thought they would be.

The National Enquirer's home page listed the obvious 'I Made Brit Sex Tape' and ' Doped Heather DUI Bust' headlines were listed big and bold, but with some searching I found some actual news.

They discretely listed thumbnails about Palin's alleged affair years ago, as well as an article about Ted Kennedy's trip to the hospital. Although they aren't the tabloid's highlights, I was intrigued to see that the Enquirer covered these stories.

I previously have viewed tabloids containing only scandals and crimes by stars but now after actually looking past the cover stories and looking at the Web sites, my perception of them has changed and I now give them more credit on their journalism than before.


I'm glad the advertisers aren't with it.

By: Katie Anthony

Over the past year, the amount of videos watched online has gone up an alarming 31 percent according to research done by The Washington Post.

You'd think that with the increasing popularity with online videos that advertisers would be jumping on the bandwagon to adapt to these videos. Yet, it doesn't seem like they're ready to dive into the world of online videos, television shows, and movies.

Good, it makes our lives a lot nicer.

While I understand the need for advertisements to keep stations up and running because of the money the advertisers put into their ads, it's so much nicer to be able to watch something online (whether it be a movie or catching up on a television show) knowing that I won't have to be interrupted every 15 minutes for a commercial break.

So, please advertisement companies, don't change your habits of the way you deliver of your ads, you're definitely making my life a lot nicer.


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