Reporters Should Stop Playing Telephone

4 January 2006

Journalism is fact. It’s not your thoughts about fact—that’s opinion. It’s not presenting the facts with your findings—that’s editorial.

Journalism is fact. It exists when someone writes or reports fact. Fact comes from someone who knows. The journalist’s job is to determine who knows the facts, collect them and report them to the rest of us. Telling us what some other reporter or network might have reported isn’t journalism. That’s called a grapevine.

TV infobabes emotionally chatting with others about what either of them thinks they might have overhead—well, that’s just chit-chat. It’s not reporting. It’s not journalism. It’s hardly entertainment. It’s a poll. It’s a man-on-the-street discussion. It’s not journalism. It’s simply an airing of opinions.

When reporters go crazy like this, it’s colossally cruel and the furthest thing from journalism. Hey, news people, stop playing telephone with each other!

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