Shannon Philpott-Sanders

Writing, Reflecting, Teaching, Parenting

Has Journalism Been Hit With an Ugly Stick?

Ugly_StickJournalists are trained to be objective – trained to report on the good, the bad, and the ugly. However, when it comes to our own profession, we often find it difficult to see anything but the good.

 The truth is that there are many ugly aspects of the job, and as this industry continues to change rapidly, many ugly trends have evolved.

 While reading through a few articles on 10,000 Words, a site devoted to multimedia tips for journalists, I came across “10 Ugly Truths About Modern Journalism.” The article was insightful and blatantly honest.

 It clearly shows how journalism has been hit with the ugly stick.

 Among a few of the top 10:

  • Many stories are not copy edited
  • Some journalists are driven by awards
  • Some journalists use Wikipedia
  • The stories that are published are the stories that sell

 Even though newspapers are downsizing, journalists’ salaries royally stink, and the processes that used to lead to quality are dwindling, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t devoted journalists passionately working to seek the truth and report it amid these challenges.

 These “chosen few” are hanging on to the past by demanding copy editing, producing investigative pieces, and prying open public records to deliver the news as watchdogs. These “chosen few” are inventing the future by embracing social media, multimedia, community journalism, and web publishing.

 These chosen few are the beautiful creatures that expose the ugly. Ugly sticks and biased stones may break bones, but words can never hurt us.


– Shannon Philpott
Blog Entry: Oct. 6, 2009

 © Shannon Philpott, 2009. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Shannon Philpott and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


October 6, 2009 - Posted by | Blog, Journalism, Teaching | , , , , ,

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