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  1. Charlie Beckett
    Charlie Beckett at |

    Hi Kevin,
    They are very good people at Goldsmith and Natalie is a fine academic. But I just don’t believe that conclusion. Possibly somehow there was some magic moment just before the papers went online when they were super-diverse editorially but I just can’t see how their online work has actually narrowed the range of stories. Just take the Guardian’s Katine project alone. It was a massive expansion of the range of the paper’s story-telling and choice of subject matter and voices.
    I think that inevitably, left-wing academics are always going to be disappointed in the news media which inevitably fails to live up to their ideals.
    Which is a shame because speaking as someone working in a University, I find many of the critical insights – often drawn from pretty obtruse theory – can provide robust and challenging insight. It’s just that they always think we’re crap…
    cheers
    Charlie

  2. Kevin Anderson
    Kevin Anderson at |

    Charlie,
    As I said in the post, I’m sure the full study goes into more detail. The problem with the interview on Radio 4 is all I heard were the conclusions, which you and I don’t believe. It’s not simply that I worked at the BBC and now work at the Guardian and am taking professional umbrage at a sharp critique, having worked in two of these newsrooms, I see the issues in a lot more complexity.

    I also think by focusing on three traditional newsrooms, it bleeds out some of the complexity of what is happening online. If you were to do the same thing online in the US and not look at the Huffington Post, ProPublica or TPM, you’d miss some of the more interesting parts of a new news eco-system. In the UK, now, we’ve got Help Me Investigate.

    I’ll agree with you about some academic critiques of the media. (Don’t get me started on Chomsky. Manufacturing Consent extrapolates quantative analysis of coverage of a single issue to divine the motivations of news organisations without ever talking to a single editor or journalist. ) I also get irritated with these critiques because not only do they deal with an idealised set of end goals, but I find the suggestions to improve journalism lack credibility. They are often done by people who have never worked in industry.

    Have you read the book? Is it worth a read?

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