Before we start talking about what news should be …

… Let’s talk about what it shouldn’t be. In this pretty scathing clip from 2009, Jon Stewart takes CNN to task for a few things. Take a look at the clip (it runs about 11 minutes), then come back here.

CNN Leaves it There

So what do we learn from Stewart? First, the news should be complete. Stopping a story just because you have to go to commercial or because you’ve only got 12 column inches to work with isn’t acceptable. Second, the job of reporting requires more than just finding spokespeople for two competing views and letting them try to talk over one another. Context is critical if you’re going to give people the information they need to make informed decisions.

Welcome to the class blog

We’re going to be talking about trends in journalism and about the pressures and problems that the industry faces. So I want to see each of you blogging about what you’re seeing in the field and in the news as it relates journalistic practices and the prospects for the future of the field. And I’ll expect lots of discussion, too, so be sure to comment on the posts of your classmates.