Journalistic Magic - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Journalistic Magic

The campaign blog of the Columbia Journalism Review (full disclosure: the mag is tied to my alma mater) offers a ridiculous semi-defense of the NY Times story on McCain:

So much of reporting, especially reporting on situations where the facts are hidden, unclear, or developing, depends on creating meaning from only what is known, which is often a set of suggestive, but not definitive, facts. A lot of journalism magic happens between readers’ ears.

To put this in context, here we have a publication that holds itself up to be a journalistic watchdog, arguing that journalism is about “creating meaning” when the facts do not support the central assertions of a story, thus leading readers to draw unfounded conclusions by conjuring up journalistic “magic.” Got it. So in other words, once you become a real journalist, you should ignore all of the lessons you were taught about journalistic ethics in grad school.

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