American journalism as it Is today


A recent Los Angeles Times article about a well-known author caught my attention because of a quotation within the article. Michael Lewis, author of The Blind Side and Moneyball was attributed with the quote:

“Going from American journalism to British journalism is like going from bratwurst to Mexican food,” he says. “You go from feeling kind of constipated to feeling like you got the runs.”

In addition to being a funny comment, it is also a bit of a scary one to think about, at least from a journalistic perspective. If I’ve learned anything about the news media and about journalism over the past couple years or so, it’s that it is in a state of flux. It isn’t doing well, it isn’t doing horribly, but no one is really sure what to think of it. It has also been challenged in many ways due to ethical problems and controversial scenarios.

And that’s from my perspective in North America.

With that being said, the fact that a respected writer like Lewis is saying that the British side of things is worse off makes me a little uneasy. Not because I plan on moving to Great Britain, but because it means that journalism in America can get even worse. It isn’t overly something to worry about at the moment, and there is still some fine journalism going around, but there is a lot of poor journalism as well.

Fake stories, wrong sourcing, poor grammar, the list goes on. With this booming technological age that we are in, there will undoubtedly be bad journalism. Being first to break a story has become more important than delivering journalistic gold that takes patience.

I’m not sure what it will take to get back to the golden age of journalism or whether we ever will again. But we can at least report the truth, and do it eloquently. Then maybe some of the bad journalists will be scraped out.

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