Who Needs Journalism?

The Wall Street Journal has an intriguing look at the new Bob Woodward book, in an article titled “So This Is Journalism?”

“State of Denial” is replete with similar Woodwardian reporting: secret meetings recounted in vivid detail, complete with lengthy, verbatim quotations of what key players said to each other as the story unfolded. Once again, it all reads as if Bob Woodward was lurking in the background as the meetings happened, taking exceptionally detailed notes. But of course he was not there.”

In recent weeks, Bob has come up again and again as an example of what true journalism is in this world of new media, and easy news. Reading the Journal’s piece underscores something that is not discussed often enough in these conversations: what is journalism?

Quite frankly, I don’t think people know. Sometimes, even I don’t know. To journalists, I feel as though they see the thick black lines in newspapers between straight reporting and an opinion piece. They carefully measure which way a word leans – whether or not it creates a balanced piece.

The public at large may not be picking up these cue’s, and I feel that is be part of any apathy toward the tug of war between citizen journalists and traditional journalists.