Woe Is Me

Paul O'Connor wrote Sunday in the Winston-Salem Journal about how "Politicians work hard to control the message", in an article about

...moves made by state officials to reduce press access and manipulate coverage.

When you click in the Printer-Friendly version of his story you get this message at the footer:

This story can be found at: http://www.carolinajournal.com/

The same story is linked from the front page of the Carolina Journal website.

I like Paul O'Connor but he is an elder statesman of the same Capital Press Corps that refused to credential Kirk Ross because he cross-posted at BlueNC. His story is clearly cross-posted to the John Locke Foundation's Carolina Journal. Paul writes:

We’re supposed to act like appreciative pigeons

Welcome to the club Paul. Don't you think it's time we worked something out so we can collectively shine light in those dark corners? We don't want your job. You do it so much better than we can. You say that:

The trend is to reduce access and limit questions

No argument there but while lamenting the lack of access granted by public officials to journalists, please consider opening up Press Corps access to other journalists who, like yourself, happen to cross-post at other venues.

I know Kirk is probably out there cringing as I he reads. This is not about Kirk per se but it is about the symbiotic relationship between blogs and mainstream media that is a reality. A little more respect in both directions might help pry open the doors of some of those tiny offices where press conferences are held in camera without cameras.


I will never forgive

I will never forgive O'Connor for the unprincipled, unfair and deeply personal shots he took at Judge Earl Britt when Judge Britt was trying to enforce a confidentiality order.

For O'Connor, it seems that press access is the most important thing in the world, as long as it's his access, and HE gets to help dole it out. The public? pshaw. Only members of the elect, who write for sterling examples of journalistic integrity like the Carolina Journal, are entitled to First Amendment rights.

"85% of Republicans are Democrats who don't know what's going on." -Robert Kennedy, Jr.

"Man is free at the moment he wishes to be." -Voltaire


I have been reading stories about Easley being aloof for more than 4 years. Or does being a journalist preclude one from reading newspapers?

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

If he writes for Carolina Journal

then is probably forbidden to read any other "outside", "polluting" sources of truthiness.

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.

Way back when

most of my friends were newspaper journalists. Today I can count on one hand the number of political journalists I admire.

There used to be a number of excellent journalists associated with the J-School in Chapel Hill, where O'Connor is a lecturer. I can't say I have much confidence in the future of journalism given who's still teaching there.

Counting on my hand

I have a lot of respect for Andy Bechtel who teaches editing and writing at UNC J-school. Some of his students are working with Kirk on his newspaper project.

Bill Cloud taught me everything I know

Rich Beckman, Jim Shumaker and a few others. Bill Cloud was my favorite.

Damn shame I never listened in class.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.

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

Does it matter -

Does it really matter how good a journalist is when the media - all media - is steadily being consolidated?

It's getting mighty close to being, 'Say what we want you to say, or else'. I think we know what the 'or else' is.

Paul O'Connor now on BlueNC?

Here's an interesting image:

I've had a cordial email exchange with Paul O'Connor who wished to make it clear that:

I have nothing to do with Carolina Journal or the Locke Foundation.

Between us we figured out that the footer is a crude track-back feature. Here's what I wrote:

Thanks, I had discovered the same thing and was in the middle of a reponse that was growing longer and longer:

Thank you for responding and indeed thank you for writing your column on Sunday.

I fully understand that you have nothing to do with Carolina Journal or the John Locke Foundation. The manner in which the Carolina Journal frames content created by others is a source of irritation to me. This includes the use of leading paragraphs. I have no idea if they pay for content or if content is used with permission but that perception is created.

I had posted a screen shot of the "print version" that stated at the bottom that: "This story can be found at: http://carolinajournal.com/"
This is what appears when the "print version" was accessed from directly from the front page of the Carolina Journal website under the heading of "Opinion". It lends authority to the perception that the column was cross-posted.

Ironically, because of the BlueNC post, we now understand that the footer is a rudimentary track-back feature that links to a site that mentions the article. By accessing the "print version" from the BlueNC post it now implies that your column is cross-posted on BlueNC.

Perhaps the editors should change the wording of the footer or eliminate it altogether as the perception remains that the column appears with the imprimatur of JournalNow at Carolina Journal and now, BlueNC.

All of this reinforces the dilemma of media fungibility and the increasing difficulty of defining boundaries between news, opinion, advocacy and, propaganda.