A journalist laments the state of journalism

A must read:  The CTV Quebec City bureau chief dishes on journalism in Canada. It’s not pretty.

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3 Responses to A journalist laments the state of journalism

  1. Something Smells Funny says:

    Great read. Thanks.

    Now, in BC we can add a special layer of ooze to the morass that is “modern media” — the incestuous coupling (literally) of media and government.

    CBC-BC’s political bureau chief is married to the woman who Christy Clark hired to be a member of the premier’s Executive as a director of communications.

    I find it ludicrous to hear Stephen Smart prattle on at CBC regarding what he found out from the opposition members about whether the government is going to call a fall election, etc. Does he think we’re all stupid, that his wife isn’t a source of information? Or is it that the CBC is confident that most members of the public don’t know about this conflict of interest? Likely the latter.

    Even if Stephen Smart’s wife is a super-human soul of discretion (which no one is, and certainly not a 20-something ex-radio producer), it is incumbent upon them both — and especially their employers — to ensure that this inappropriate opportunity for massaging the news be exposed and demolished. It should never have been permitted in the first place. Most recruiting efforts require people to divulge any potential conflicts of interest. Was this one so big they couldn’t recognize the elephant???

    Either CBC or Premier Christy Clark should have stipulated that one or the other (he or his wife) must give up their jobs.

    But that has not happened. Stephen Smart continues to play the role of CBC’s political chief for BC and is “interviewed” and portrayed by CBC show hosts as a credible, unbiased political journalist at the same time as his wife is in charge of massaging the news to her boss’ benefit, the new premier of BC.

    At very least, the CBC should make full and frequent disclosures to it’s audience and the taxpayers of Canada informing them of the intimate relationship between their political chief in BC and a member of the premier’s Executive, in charge of communications.

    Sean Leslie (Vancouver’s CKNW) is another example of a member of the political media in BC being in bed with the government. Mr. Leslie’s wife is a member of the Public Affairs Bureau (PAB, or “Pravda on the Inner Harbour” as some have dubbed it). Again, no public disclosure, but perhaps there’s less onus on a private broadcaster for coming clean with it’s audience than the publicly-owned CBC (as it still is, at least until Harper flexes his knuckles).

    Note: Premier Clark has, I believe, renamed that 200-plus organization of spin doctors, but I can’t recall what it is called now. Just like Arthur Anderson & Co. after the Enron debacle, the premier changed the name of the smelly organization in an attempt to stop the sliding credibility of that group.

  2. Robbie says:

    How ironic that this post comes to light the day Gary Bannerman passes away. Definite end of an era. Where is investigative journalism?

  3. Ian says:

    Really?? This guy is how old? – Sounds like it was written by a teenage girl. Pathetic.

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