There’s a near-frantic buzz in some corners of the mediaverse, as journalists shift into post-election gear and absorb the reality of the incoming administration.
The newest cover of the NY Times Magazine reflects The New America with its in-your-face Republican-red swath, the highlighted “HIS” and “OUR” divide and the fading Democrat-blue headline. So many interpretations here…
Then there’s this interesting video, compliments of Brian Stelter with CNN’s Reliable Sources, where his guest declares that journalists must “hope for the best and prepare for the worst” under the new president.
It’s as if cable news suddenly understood the definition of “news,” after selling the president-elect nonstop for the last year and a half.
Stelter even dug up Floyd Abrams to punch home the worrisome possibilities under the Trump Age – revocation of FCC licenses, First Amendment violations and dirtying the public’s perception of the media.
On a slightly different tilt, this reporter reveals a conversation with an anonymous government source regarding the FBI investigation into Trump’s ties to Russia. The upshot: the media must assume its watchdog role. They have the onus (responsibility) of reporting if “something were to occur” to implicate the president-elect with the Putin regime.
The above excerpt is completed in an article titled “Eight steps reporters should take before Trump assumes office,” found in the venerable Columbia Journalism Review. Dana Priest, Pulitzer Prize winning reporter for The Washington Post, outlines these guidelines to professionals in her field:
- Rebuild sources.
- Join forces.
- Make outside partnerships
- Discover the first family
- Renew the hunt – find those tax filings.
- Out disinformation
- Create a war chest for legal defense
- Be grateful
On that note, Americans should be thankful that there are members of the Fourth Estate who see their roles clearly as impartial journalists rather than frightened sycophants.
We will see how this plays out.