Here’s an item Karen Unland brought to my attention last night. Since moving to the Internet as a journalist I’ve become more and more interested in the “objectivity” that sits as a cornerstone of our news.
I don’t ever look at Dose.ca for entertainment news. So I cannot confirm if this story from the Edmonton Journal is just par for the course, or a departure into tabloidy personal attacks.
Needless to say I would hope Edmonton’s “paper of record” would hold itself, even in the entertainment section, to a high standard of journalism. News reports need to inform and educate. Sure, they can entertain, but they can still do so with an eye to informing and educating. Or, they can at least keep from stooping to low levels of discourse.
I’ll be honest, I clicked through to the story because I like making fun of So You Think You Can Dance (Canada). It was a go-to joke of mine during the municipal election because CTV Edmonton ran it election night. I also have concerns about the amount of original programming produced in Canada. So, I could have accepted criticism of that sort, even criticism that simply said it was a waste of airtime.
(The actual paper version of the story did not include the trashsy attacks. I’m not sure what that says about the web editing or what the Journal thinks about its web audience.)
An audience needs to get something from you: information, ideas of where to find more details, how to engage and act on the issues at hand. When a newsroom just throws around trashy zingers it’s not helping the community conversation.
In other news…
Now, I was originally going to end this post right there. But Karen Unland’s Pecha Kucha presentation last night touched upon trumpeting good journalism in this changing time for news.
We do need to praise good journalism. And we, as the audience, should demand the best kind of storytelling.
That can not only push journalists (of the traditional and new varieties) to create better content, it can push people to create their own journalism if nothing else is getting the job done. Those are important points for folks trying to convince us they deserve to be paid, or have businesses advertise with them.