As a J-school grad, I have a special interest and growing disdain for the so-called mainstream media. Under self-imposed pressures for higher profits, most media outlets have become parodies of real news organizations . . . especially local television news.

According to an N&O story today, nearly 20% of Triangle residents actually watch local tv news each week, and 42% of everyone watching television at ll pm are spending their time with the local news shows.

This is really sad.

I confess to watching local television news only once or twice a month, mostly to remind myself how pathetic and trivial local news has become. I can only hope people aren't really watching this trash for the real news, but rather to find out whether they'll need an umbrella the next morning.

For my part, I'll settle for looking out the window when I wake up. The price of watching a miserable mixture of happy talk and "if it bleeds it leads" is simply too high to get some guy's guess about the next day's weather.


Another grad from J-school...

Local news has always been a bit hokey. What depresses me is how little news we receive from the print media. The Charlotte Observer is horrible. Anything they have of value comes straight from the AP wire. I can go there myself now. I don't need the Observer. I can also watch any government proceedings provided by our local government station or any of the 3 C-Span channels. I realize that most people won't bother and don't care to go to the source. Istead, they believe any crap fed them by traditional media sources. It is scary that the quality of information provided by local and national media has deteriorated so much over the years, but what is even scarier is that so many people still believe what they read and hear without ever questioning its accuracy.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

And it's going to get worse . . .

the J-school in Chapel Hill has shortlisted candidates for a new dean to replace Richard Cole. The candidates are all straight out of the MSM frying pan. Rather than stepping back and looking for a dean that would help students understand the roles and responsibilities of the media in culture and society, the school is opting to focus even more on being just another "trade school." I'm not saying we don't need trade schools, but one of the nation's preeiminent public research universities should not be selling out for such a pedestrian mission.

I'm not a recent grad...

and I miss the days of Beckman, Cloud and Shu. I kept most of my books and still have my 20-yr-old AP Style Manual sitting on my desk. Damn that was fun. I sure do miss the good old days where you actually had to source your research and reporting meant more than regurgitating the AP or UPI wire services.

Do you think I need a new style manual?

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Awww Thanks!

Something kinda nice (if not obsolete) about a book that has no entries under the words web, byte, internet...etc.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

I have the same style book . . .

When were you in J-school? I got my masters for Chapel Hill in 1982, which pretty much exposes me as the old man that I am.


Yay! You're older!

I received my undergraduate degree in '84 so I entered J-school as you were leaving.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.