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Thursday, May 26, 2022

LABJ FORUM: News Fit to Print?

News Fit to Print?

The revelation that a reporter for The New York Times had fabricated and plagiarized quotes and stories is the latest in a series of infrequent but high-profile stains on the media. As much as it has shaken the community of journalists, so too has it given some of the reading public pause when it comes to accepting what the media delivers as reliable. So the Business Journal asks:

Do you believe what you read in the papers?

Mary Beth Garber

President

Southern California Broadcasters Association

For the most part yes. Like anything else, we learned what they taught us in college, which is don’t trust anything, especially these days. It isn’t that the newspapers are deliberately spreading misinformation, it’s even when they do double and triple check their sources, so many of these people can be lying.

Eric DeDominic

President

CT Engineering

It’s become entertainment. I think the news stopped being the news in the 1960s. It’s gotten more difficult to attract readers, and I think they have to juice that stuff up. When I first started reading, I was always under the impression that everything was terrific. Then I learned not to believe everything I read. I look for multiple points on things since it’s easy for media to pick different sides.

Nien-Ling Wacker

Chief Executive

LaserFiche Document Imaging

A free press is a great asset that keeps America honest. With freedom, though, comes occasional sloppiness and inaccuracy. So, I get my news from multiple, diverse sources dailies, trade journals, the Web and international publications. It is imperative to stay on top of news and trends, but it is equally important to use good judgment in choosing sources.

Leo Smith

Officer

Los Angeles Police Department

I’m skeptical about anything because things are always seasoned to someone’s taste. Things always have some type of twist to them.

Marci Blaze

Chief Executive

The Blaze Co.

Some portion of it. Having worked in the public relations industry and closely with journalists for 27 years, I understand the media is made up of human beings who are fallible. I also understand that reporters aren’t editors. And when something is edited, it can appear differently than it was intended.

Mark Helm

Partner

Munger Tolles & Olson LLP

I don’t believe everything I read in the news. I don’t always suspect that there are errors like the ones that arose recently at The New York Times, but I think we all recognize that people have perspectives on things. Reporting, like all other things, is affected by one’s perspective.

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