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What's newsworthy?

Posted Wednesday, May 23, 2007, at 3:04 PM

Who is to decide what is newsworthy and what is not? I personally don't find anything wrong with the story (For those of you who don't know what I'm talking about, read my last blog). Just because some don't agree with what's written doesn't mean it's not factual or newsworthy. News reporters have the sole job of reporting factual information to the readers. If this were a murder case you'd want to know exactly how everything played out. Think the O.J. Simpson case. Or think about your conversations with neighbors or friends when an ambulance goes racing by..or you see police cars next door. Most of the conversations are truly speculatory since the facts aren't available. What you read in the paper is based on fact ... not diner gossip.

While I agree that there are sensationalists in the world, this story is not comparable to what's running on the front covers of newspapers across the world. Stories of Somalians dying every day from famine and civil war, terrorists detonating themselves or pop stars baring their unmentionables for photographers grace the newspapers, magazines and Internet sites most people frequent daily. This story describes an act of life at a low point. I would rather that these incidents never happen..but they do.

I don't believe we should put masks over our eyes and see just what we want to see or hear just what we want to hear. Life doesn't throw curveballs to only those who want a challenging pitch. Unfortunately bad things happen and they have to be reported as they happened.

Some of us like stories based on fact, eyewitness accounts and testminoy while others enjoy reading about the type of frosting used to cover grandma's cake for her 70th birthday party, the number of boyfriends Aunt Jezabel has or how many bridesmaids stood with Sally at her wedding. Yes, some people would like nothing else than to read about such breaking news but the majority of the public wants to know what's going on in real life. Since there are many tastes out there a newspaper MUST cover the bad with the good. Trust me, reporters would rather not cover these stories. But they must cover them in order to provide adequate, all-around coverage.

As far as the comment that other news organizations, the ones you consider reputable, spare its viewers or readers from this sort of unethical content...I'm befuddled at what you watch or read on a daily basis. Dora the Explorer might not detail bloody murder clues but Newsline does. KOAM or KSN are reputable sources and they use details.

If the Tribune, as well as any other paper, is to be a real news organization then its staff must publish stories good and bad. If you don't want to read the stories about rape, murder or molestation then glance at the headline and skip the story. You must first realize that part of the problem lies with you for reading said stories.

The Fort Scott Tribune is not an unethical paper. It doesn't lie, manipulate the truth or lead readers in the wrong direction. Neither does its staff. I shall defend them as long as I have the ability to do so.

Showing comments in chronological order
[Show most recent comments first]

News organizations must report the news good and bad. It is how they do it that reveals their ethics and professionalism.

That said, I for one do not believe the Tribune is unethical,lies or manipulates the truth. If you have done so I am not aware of it. As far as leading the readers in the wrong direction that is much to subjective for me to respond to. I wouldn't know where to begin with that statement! Pages of blogs could be made with statements like that.

I do believe that like anyone or any organization they can make mistakes, or be wrong. Wouldn't you agree?

I agree with your statement that this article is not comparable to what's running in newspapers across the world, in fact I think it is worse! I challenge you to provide one front page article in any credible newspaper in our country that went into the graphic details of a reported child molestation such as your paper did.

I must confess I watched an episode of Dora the Explorer once, but I do not look to the cartoons for news of the day, and am not befuddled but offended that you would insult a reader like that.

Newsline,KOAM,KSN and others do not go into the graphic details of child molestations such as your paper went into on the front page the other day, nor do they show graphic pictures or video's of the kind I now suspect your paper would show if it was allowed to.

Judging by your opinion of what is newsworthy maybe your paper will be the first in the area to start putting extremely graphic photographs of mutilated bodies of people that have been injured or killed by war,murder,car and industrial accidents. In fact, why are you not doing that right now? It's factual news isn't it? What are you waiting for? I know the Tribune has working cameras available.

I stand by what I wrote the other day,"Details aren't necessarily in good taste or newsworthy."

-- Posted by like2b_onree on Thu, May 24, 2007, at 6:12 PM

ps. I don't mind putting my name to what I write.

Just for the record when I subscribed to this electronic edition of the newspaper I submitted the first part of my email address in the username section.

My real name is Dan Doherty

-- Posted by like2b_onree on Thu, May 24, 2007, at 6:39 PM

Oh please, Mr. Doherty. You act as if this world is so clean and peaceful and only the Tribune makes it dirty by printing certain details about a molestation case. Maybe the problem with this country is that nobody wants to hear the details about something like that. Everyone just wants to turn away and pretend it didn't happen. So, if you're not mature enough to handle the real truth about this world, then don't read the newspaper.

-- Posted by The Union Forever on Fri, May 25, 2007, at 10:10 AM

So, just how detailed should a paper get? Should they post photographs too?

Should they have limits?

-- Posted by like2b_onree on Fri, May 25, 2007, at 10:40 AM

I've been pushed to wonder, has everyone forgotten the saying, " Dont shoot the messenger?"

Someone is always going to say that a person is not doing their job right, and that they can do it better, and then someone else will pipe up and say " no thats not the right way either, you should do it this way.." and so on and so forth. I hope that this community realizes that there is no way on earth that the writers and editors are going to please everyone, all the time. its impossible.

newspaper employees- keep up the good work.

-- Posted by pinkpixie on Wed, May 30, 2007, at 10:41 AM

I agree with you Pinkpixie.

I think overall they do a great job, and I have even personally(not in a blog) told them that.

How detailed do you think the news reporters should get?

Should they be able to post extremely graphic photo's even if they are "fact"?

Should they have limits?

-- Posted by like2b_onree on Wed, May 30, 2007, at 8:27 PM

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Trying Not To Drop My Camera... Again
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