What’s happened to professional journalism?
We’ve all heard them for years now, but nobody seems to have an answer to the following questions. Where has journalistic integrity gone in America? Where is the balanced approach that every true disciple of journalism must take to report both sides of the story? What’s happened to reporting the truth, and letting the viewer/listener make up their own mind?
And news reporting just gets more unbelievable and unbalanced as the months drag on.
My questions are not new, yet they continue to baffle yours truly as we get bombarded by a stream of completely one-sided “news reports” from the media. It’s not just one reporter or commentator that’s violating the journalism code of ethics, but entire networks. Take, for example, that bastion of journalistic integrity NBC news. One would think their sole mission is to destroy those whose opinions don’t coincide with one political party. Why don’t they simply come out and say they’re “all in” for a single ideology and quit trying to present themselves as real journalists?
I know why. It also doesn’t sell airtime, in their minds. Yet, they remain the lowest rated network in cable news. Go figure.
As a former broadcast news producer I understand how and why news gets presented the way it does. Even Walter Cronkite was a biased journalist. The difference between him and, say, Chris Matthews, is Walter was much more likeable, believable, and possessed a much higher level of professional integrity.
Do I miss the “good ol’ days” of TV (or any form of) balanced journalism? You bet. But I’d settle for one newscaster – or network – that presents both sides of the story, instead of only his/her opinion.