Muckraking“The man who could look no way but downward with the muck-rake in hishands; who would neither look up nor regard the crown he was offered, butcontinued to rake himself the filth on the floor.”•Coined 100 years ago by President TheodoreRoosevelt•Aka investigative reporting, adversarialjournalism, advocacy reporting, public servicejournalism, and exposé reporting•Traced back to 1690•New muckraking age began again by the1960‟s, investigative journalism
Discuss: In what ways do you findinvestigative stories and tabloids tobe similar? Different?
Tabloids Vs. InvestigativeJournalismSimilar• Stories are crafted around the theme of victimization• Extensive use of ironyDifferent• Investigative stories are earnest and deeply felt• Tabloids are superficial“In the main people do not watch programmes such asPanorama or Watchdog. Neither do they buy newspapers forthe in-depth journalistic investigative stories. The mostpopular papers are tabloids.”
Downfall• “…The spectre of the intensification ofconcentrations of media ownership, whichjournalists themselves believed „chilled‟the atmosphere for investigativereporting.”
Limitations1. Media owners may curb reportersindependence.2. Advertisers can mute journalists‟criticisms.3. Investigative reporting‟s expensive costcauses it to be scarce.
Diminishing“Investigative journalism is the mostexpensive and riskiest form of reporting,partly because it is labor intensive andpartly because by its very nature it cansometimes result in no story. Today‟s newsgatherers are more financially constrained,and therefore find it easier to spend adiminishing budget on chasing celebritiesor the Royal Family.”
Discuss:Can you think of any recentstories the prove that investigativejournalism has diminished?
Qualities of An InvestigativeJournalist1. Passion2. Curiosity3. Initiative4. Logical thinking, organization and self-discipline5. Flexibility6. Teamwork7. Well-developed reporting skills8. Good research skills9. Determination and patience10. Fairness and strong ethics11. Discretion12. Citizenship13. Courage
Myths about investigativejournalism• Myth 1: It‟s glamorous and can be careerdefining to the point where it creates stars
Famous Investigative Journalists• Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein
Famous Investigative Journalists• Seymour Hersh
Famous Investigative Journalists• Walter Cronkite
Famous Investigative Journalists• Robert Rosenthal
Myths About InvestigativeJournalism• Myth 2: Journalists can indeed be biggerthan the stories they report
Famous Investigative Stories• Bloomingdale Asylum in 1872
Famous Investigative Stories• The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
Famous Investigative Stories• The Color of Money
Myths About InvestigativeJournalism• Myth 3: The investigative journalist is aLone Ranger
Myths About InvestigativeJournalism• Myth 4: Investigative journalism is thepreserve of the private media
Discuss: Do you think the purposeof investigative journalism is just touncover secrets?
Watchdogs or Whistle Blowers?• Do you think thatsociety viewsinvestigative journalistsas whistle blowers or associetys watch dogs?• BBC’s Slip of the tongue• Who’s the real target?– Corporate targets
Semi-Investigative Journalism• Semi-Investigative Journalism-involves journalists creating animage of investigative reportingrather that actually performing it.• Do you see this being the futureof investigative journalism?• Strategies used to construct animage of investigative journalism:– Factism– Extensive citing ofauthoritative official sources– Reliance on faceless (secret)sources– Appealing to commonknowledge and commonsense
Future of Investigative Journalism• Does the public influencewhat investigativejournalists write about?• The people are the futureof journalism!– Gaining credibility throughtheir ability to explain,interpret, or investigating– Crowdsourcing- citizenswho provide expertise orbloggers who contributeanalysis or review ofdocuments
Future of Investigative Journalism• How can investigative journalist make theirdream story a reality?• Three phenomena for the future ofinvestigative journalism:– Rise of non-profits• Collaboration– Rise of machines• Computers and software– Social Media– “Computational journalism”» New Field?– Rise of networks• Mash-ups• What does it take to be an investigativejournalist in the future?– Organizer– Interpreter– Gathers and delivers facts– Database manager– Data processor– Data analyst
Discussion Questions:• Is investigative journalism just good reporting?• 1. If investigative journalism were to die out, what do you think theconsequences would be for society?• 2. Do you think there are any downfalls to investigative journalism?• 3. Does the public influence what investigative journalists write about?• 4. Do you think current investigative journalism keeps the public informed ofthe truth?• 5. Do you think that society views investigative journalists as whistleblowers or as societys watch dogs?
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