As I mentioned earlier, I don’t have the time, energy, or inclination to write more on this topic. But a journalism-practicing FrontBurnervian did:
SB’s post can be distilled down to “PR practitioners and journalists are human, and as such are fallible.” There’s nothing wrong with that. But then he goes on to describe the false moral high ground journalists claim over their PR counterparts – get this – right before he himself stakes out a moral high ground over journalists – get this, Part II – right before denying that he is staking out a moral high ground! He truly does belong in PR. Read those last two graphs to yourself. It’s like something out of the Onion.
There’s more after the jump.
Of the three objections SB has to the craft, only one has to do with actual journalism; the other two deal with anti-journalism. Deciding what your story is before doing your reporting has as much to do with reporting as deciding what your results are before doing your research has to do with science. That takes care of points one and two. Point three, the one that addresses actual journalism, baffles me. No subject in such a situation is required to submit to an interview. If pursuing such a story makes him uncomfortable or compromises the delicate balance of his personal moral framework, then he never should have been a journalist in the first place. The question of whether or not stories of personal tragedy are newsworthy has tied me into neither pretzels nor knots – and I have done such interviews under the most unsettling circumstances.
He’s just sayin’.