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Posts Tagged ‘Walter Cronkite’

Walter Cronkite Memorial

A large banner at the Walter Cronkite Memorial in St. Joseph, Mo., honors his famous sign-off line.

By coincidence, my travel schedule this month took me on consecutive weekends to two universities with exhibits honoring Walter Cronkite.

My family did not have a television when Cronkite made his debut as CBS anchor in 1962. One of the biggest stories of his career — the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy — finally made Mom and Dad cave and buy our first “idiot box” (Mom called it that before we got one and through the years as she became a loyal watcher). So of course, we missed Cronkite’s announcement of Kennedy’s death:

The Cronkite exhibits at Missouri Western State University and the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University both take note of the importance of the Kennedy coverage in the anchor’s career: (more…)

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When should journalists use their personal social media accounts and when should they use the branded newsroom accounts?

An editor raised those issues in an email (edited lightly to avoid identification, because I welcome private requests for help, even though I sometimes address the issues publicly):

Some of my staff members — copy editors who also do reporting — have been finding that crowdsourcing on our newsroom’s Facebook and Twitter accounts has been very useful, as would be expected. But, at times, they say, there can be so many reporters and editors doing it that their questions get lost in a sea of posts, all of which are almost always quality. They say they sometimes can have better luck posting crowdsourcing questions to their private Twitter and Facebook accounts, which means their sources have been gravitating toward those accounts and not the official branded accounts.

A concern raised among some editors is that these private accounts don’t give our official sites the hits and exposure they could if the groundwork was done through the official accounts. In addition, the private accounts and all the new followers staffers generate through their work here would go with the staffer should they leave.

It’s hard to find a best practice for how other papers handle this. This harkens back to the day when reporters on the cutting edge of technology initially used their private email accounts before newspapers caught on and got people their own company email account.

Anyway, I hear wisdom on both sides. Just wondering if you had thoughts that you wouldn’t mind sharing. Hope that isn’t asking too much. I read your blog routinely and find it very helpful and interesting. (more…)

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Accuracy has always been right at the top of the list of journalism values and priorities.

Except when I saw friends lose their jobs (and sometimes, had to deliver that news myself) or had to write about horrible tragedies, the sickest feelings I have had in this business were when I got my facts wrong. It didn’t happen often, but each time, I brutalized myself with second-guessing and figured out how to prevent it from happening again (and committed to ensure it wouldn’t happen again).

I don’t know how accuracy gets more important than that, but it has actually grown in importance. The public has more potential sources of information than ever today. Almost any path you can imagine for media companies to find our way to a prosperous future starts with being a trusted source for information. (more…)

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