Tag Archives: New York Times

What “Off The Record” Means

What “off the record” means: Matt Flegenheimer gives his interpretation of ways journalists get information from Washington officials and rules they sometimes follow.

“As a general principle, a reporter’s best course of action is to establish jargon-free parameters in plain English at the start: Can a source be quoted by name? Can we use the information if we leave out the name? Can we at least describe the source’s job?” he writes.

“But among those who have long dealt with the news media, like politicians and their charges, there is occasionally a sort of shorthand for these questions.”

 

 

Staying On The Record

Staying on the record: Steven Pearlberg reports that Dean Baquet, New York Times executive editor, took a personal ethical stance in refusing to join in an off-the-record meeting with President Trump.

“I don’t think officials should be able to tell me things that I can’t publish,” says Baquet, hewing to a philosophy that journalists should control the terms of an interview.

Not wanting to be courted or wooed, Baquet says “the leader of the news gathering operation shouldn’t have access that reporters don’t get.”

Solidarity Among Reporters

Solidarity among reporters: Michael Grynbaum writes about “an unusual show of solidarity” at a White House press briefing when Jordan Fabian yields to Hallie Jackson.

It “seemed to signal a new approach by the White House press corps toward an administration that regularly uses briefings to deride, and divide, the news media.” Called a “classy move.”

 

Sleeping With Elephants

 

Reporters covering the circus can’t sleep with elephants: David Von Drehle faults editors in the affair between New York Times reporter Eli Watkins and a federal security aide.

“One after another, as Watkins rocketed up the career ladder, her supervisors failed to dig deeply enough to weigh the damage that could be done to the credibility of all media should her pillow talk be made public. Now that the laundry is aired and the damage is done, some of these same editors are minimizing the impact on media credibility.”

Defining Civility

Defining civility: The Washington Post’s editorial board sees strong political feelings spilling over into the private sphere.

“We understand the strength of feelings, but we don’t think the spilling is a healthy development,” says the board. “Those who are insisting that we are in a special moment justifying incivility should think for a moment how many Americans might find their own special moment.”

Other views on civility and media appear in Commentary, Vice, Salon, the Washington Post, the New York Times and Vox.

Affair Rocks Washington Media

Affair rocks Washington media: New York Times staff writers take a close look at the three-year affair between a NYT reporter and a security aide source, now part of a federal investigation and seizure of records.

“Avoiding conflicts of interest is a basic tenet of journalism, and intimate involvement with a source is verboten,” they write. But the central point is the seizure of a reporter’s records, says a Times statement.

Trump Porn Stifles News Gathering

Trump porn stifles news gathering: Nicholas Kristof writes that the national nonstop focus on Trump takes attention away from major issues like drug overdoses and shorter life expectancy.

“The biggest Trump scandals aren’t those unfolding in Washington, but those devastating the lives of the poor and vulnerable in distant American towns,” he writes.

Falling Short On Covering AIDS And Gays

Falling short on covering AIDS and gays: New York Times staffers find the newspaper “had a spotty record of covering the AIDS epidemic in the early 1980s — and gay culture in general.”

When covered, those stories were “often buried in the back of the newspaper” and deemed not important enough for the front page.