Watchdog Blog

Barry Sussman: Our New Watchdog Blog

Posted at 6:09 pm, October 8th, 2006
Barry Sussman Mug

Day to day in many news organizations there’s no real encouragement for reporters and editors to do the best job they can. Instead, it’s just the opposite: The message sent by cuts in staff, cuts in news hole and focus on easy features, not hard news, is loud and clear and very, very disheartening and cynical.Making things worse is the confusion spread by organized, high-level disinformation campaigns and lies, unending attacks on press credibility and news organizations’ own repeated bumbling and lack of concern. No one expects perfection but, as the gossip columnist used to say, “Where are standards?”

Amid such surroundings it seems to us that it could be important, even vital, to have sympathetic, knowledgeable, respected writers offer a little guidance and commentary and, every now and then, show us how our work is supposed to be done.

We took online in May 2004 with a focus on having experts from Harvard and elsewhere pose questions the press should ask. Since then we’ve had more than 130 contributors and 440 or so items. We are of course continuing that.

Today we launch the Watchdog Blog, to supplement those efforts. We have a strong lineup of writers — some have already weighed in with their first items; for some it may be a few weeks before they can contribute. At least three are finishing books right now. [Click here for bios of the bloggers.]

We intend to add more writers as we go along, including some from outside the United States.

The blog format makes it easy for readers to post comments. We’d love nothing more than to host a rich, continuing discussion of how to do better reporting and editing—and in the end, possibly, to help bring about to some excellent journalism.

4 Responses to “Our New Watchdog Blog”

  1. James Ruff says:

    I have put your blog at the front of my bookmark bar and will happily forward your site to others.

    Will you include on your blogged entries a convenient ‘share with others’ box?

  2. Robin Herman says:

    Wonderful venue. Great idea. I would have hoped though to see more female journalists –only two out of 13 bloggers — when there are so many women in newsrooms. A couple of younger journalists would also be good. Hope you can add more contributors.

  3. mbgms says:

    To quote our president, “Bring it on!” Truthiness has never been more important or more scarce.

  4. Fithri Amalia says:

    can we say this is the implementation of citizen jurnalism? where everybody cab be a reporter?

Comments are closed.

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