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Nov 18 2013

Jay Rosen joins the new Greenwald-Omidyar press outfit

The outline of the new Omidyar-Greenwald media venture is taking shape. New York University journalism professor Jay Rosen is the latest to sign up and he gives some information about it, including the people who have joined so far. It is a good list. I am familiar with most of the names and the ones that are unfamiliar such as Liliana Segura and Eric Bates have biographies that look promising.

Rosen explains why he joined and the implications for his future writing. Up to now he has been covering the media (very well, I might add) as an outsider. But since he is now an insider to this outfiit, he acknowledges that readers will have to weigh what he says differently, especially when he writes about their own activities.

He has some interesting observations about how journalists present their work. The popular idea that they present “The View From Nowhere”, i.e., completely objectively, is of course untenable though it is a conceit that many in the mainstream cling to. But if not that, then what? What would “The View From Somewhere” be like? Rosen tries to give some idea but this is clearly a work in progress.

2 comments

  1. 1
    wtfwhateverd00d

    If it strives to be a independent, skeptical, investigatory media venture it will provide a needed resource.

    I expect them to do a terrific job in the political realm.

    Where journalists often fall down, even taking Rosen’s stance against the “View From Nowhere” into account (http://pressthink.org/2013/11/newco/) is in “ferocious, independent” journalistic coverage of health and science in which the lazy english major disdain for science backgrounds of many journalists come to the foreground and they start pumping out one politically correct article after another mainly because they have not a clue as to how science works and because there are these days enormous social media pressures for journalists to publish a coherent politically correct message.

    Here is some preventive trollicide to stop your dumbass left wing trolls from their silly complaint there is no such thing as political correctness apart from some right wing conspiracy theory. Yeah, I know, it won’t work.

    http://www.southerncrossreview.org/56/lessing-political-correctness.htm

    It is very good to see Rosen write this:

    It took me a while to understand this myself, but I want to isolate an important fact at the outset.Professional journalism has been optimized for low participation. Up until a few years ago, the “job” of the user was simply to receive the news and maybe send a letter to the editor. There was a logic to this. Journalists built their practices on top of a one-way, one-to-many, broadcasting system. Most of us understand that by now. What we haven’t quite appreciated is how the logic of the one way, one-to-many pipes sunk deeply, not only into professional practice, but into professional selves.

    I have been saying that for years. One enormous reason why so many media sites have such terrible comments is that the journalists and their editors never engage with their audience there. It just turns into a cesspool.

    Most reporters and their sites would do so much better by engaging with readers to:

    a) clarify stories
    b) correct stories
    c) learn about alternate sources
    d) learn more about basic theory
    e) find new stories

    Readers often know far more about the story than the reporter does. It’s arrogance and fear that keeps reporters from engaging with readers.

  2. 2
    trucreep

    I definitely agree that engaging with readers would greatly improve the quality. Greenwald is a huge proponent of this, so perhaps it shows that there is some merit to that idea.

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