Thursday, May 28, 2009

Report: KC Star reporter who gave favorable coverage to Sprint has been hired by Sprint

John Landsberg broke the news today that a Star reporter who wrote favorable news articles on Sprint -- and didn't mention negative developments at the company -- has been hired by Sprint.

In his introductory column as the Kansas City Star's new business editor Keith ChrostowskiTelecom & Technology (5/26) heaped praise on a number of business reporters and editors at the newspaper. One name he did not mention was that of veteran Telecom & Technology reporter Jason Gertzen.

Now we know reason for the oversight...

Gertzen will be taking a newly-created position at Sprint Nextel--the company he covered for more than four years--- focusing on "external social media engagement." He will be in the troubled telecom's Communications Department, according to an internal announcement Wednesday at Sprint.

Gertzen refused to confirm or deny the report, however, Christowski says it is true: "Yes, Jason is leaving the Star to work at Sprint."

"I guess he was looking for a more stable position, so, of course he jumped to Sprint," joked a source. Insiders are already saying Gertzen will be the "Twitter-meister" or the "Facebook King" of Sprint.

Coincidentally, we noted earlier this month (5/4) that Gertzen lavished praise on Sprint after the Kansas City-based company released its first quarter earnings report. He also did not mention a major issue involving outsourcing of several thousand Sprint jobs that was the focus of the Wall Street Journal coverage.

While virtually every other major media outlet (New York Times, KMBC, Wall Streeet Journal) portrayed Sprint's earnings report in less than flattering terms, Gertzen focused on Sprint's creative TV ads and its "turnaround momentum."

I emailed Gertzen for comment but as of yet he hasn't responded.


John Altevogt said...

This is typical. The Star is the establishment newspaper. They had a reporter at the WYCO Bureau by the name of Steve Nicely who retired from reporting on former mayor Carol Marinovich and immediately went to work for her re-election campaign with absolutely no difference in style or content.

His successor, Mark Wiebe has taken the same approach to writing about the UG. WHile the local weekly was more than happy to report on the drastic overappraisals by the county Weibe not only fled from the story, he actually wrote stories talking about how taxes were going down.

The same could be said for virtually every beat they cover. My problem with The Star isn't that it's left, it's that it's corrupt.

Anonymous said...

Your problem is just that you're a sad and tired little man. Cry baby! Cry!

Anonymous said...

I know more about Kansas City than I ever wanted to. Could we move on to Omaha now, or Des Moines?