Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Journalism 101

It seems almost every town experiencing growth in the Northwest has a "grassroots" group bitching about that growth.

Bayview, up in Kootenai County, is no exception. A new group called the "Bayview Community Council" was recently formed to "give citizens more of a voice in the development process." The Spokeman Review ran a story about this group last Saturday. Herb Huseland, a resident of Bayview who has a blog called "Bay Views," took exception to the coverage and has some very salient comments that apply to our local media and its coverage of our merry band of growth-hating scoundrels, PARD:
Bayview has been somewhat quiet recently, unless you count the remarks of disidents starting up their very own community club, because they couldn't control the Bayview Chamber of Commerce.

Well, that brings up another subject. A staff reporter working for the Spokesman-Review, interviewed several people that, I've never heard of, that stated the Chamber is representing business only, and not the community. Not true. While there are about five businesses that have membership in the Chamber, about 90% of the membership is are individuals.

The problem is in the quality of reporting. If all you interview are of the opposition, then what you have is a newsroom editorial, instead of information. I realize that "If it bleeds, it leads" does dominate, slanting opinion by either not trying to interview others, is not news...It's just the opinion of a very few.
"Fair and balanced" means presenting EVERY side of the issue, even if you have to get up off your ass and find the other sides. Repeating a press release verbatim without fact checking, not digging deeper, or simply giving a group free ink/air time to spout their propaganda is just lazy, biased, or both. Michelle Dupler of the Daily News is one local reporter who seems to know how to do it right.

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Scotty said...

Unless I missed the memo, isn't this a republic where we elect officials who will represent our needs in the government? Howcome it is necessary to "have a voice" when we have a voice on Tuesday in November?

April E. Coggins said...

Kinda like what I read tonight in the Daily News about motorcycles. It was obviously written by someone who hasn't done much more than occasionally watch Orange County Choppers. I am grateful that the Daily News refrained from using the Bergs as poster children for a political point. The Lewiston Tribune could learn a lesson in tact from the Daily News.

Bay Views said...

I am honored to have my viewpoint agreed with by at least one other person.

May the hell-raising begin...

April E. Coggins said...

Bay views: You are posing with a banjo. That makes you look like the KUID host. We can't help believing that you are another liberal with a banjo.