Friday, June 5, 2009

Want to know why traditional media is failing? A reader at Tony's Kansas City explains it for you

I've been reading the reports about yesterday's media discussion -- called a "citizen conversation" -- involving a panel of news experts in Kansas City. The panel included people from the newspaper business, a representative from TV news, a journalism professor, and blogger Tony Botello. Apparently the crowd was larger than expected. John Landsberg says the event was a huge success. Tony Botello gives his take here.

But looking at the reports, I found the best insight about traditional media in the most unexpected place: Tony's comment section. Here it is:
... It was very interesting to hear the disdain that two traditional media people hold for the general public's ability to decipher news.

Who determines "professionalism" and "bias"? As if the Star or any other print media for that matter has ever been that professional, unbiased, and dare I even bring up "inclusive"? That topic wasn't even on the table and should have been to a greater extent.

It is precisely because of their lack of credible minority opinion and reporters and their desire to mold public opinion that they are becoming extinct. Of course, they have a slant and always have, it is just becoming more apparent as they becoming more fragile and closer to extinction.

I was impressed with your insightful comments. Think you were the only person on the panel who will still be around by the middle of this 21st century to see what happens with print media.

This reader has more common sense than most media elites.


Anonymous said...

As a former Star reporter, let me tell you that Tony Botello has zero credibility. I remember in 1994, the newsroom hosted a panel on diversity in the paper. Tony's mother Rita Valenciano was one of the panelists. She spent a good part of the time accusing us of being racists and then she, get this, criticized The Star for being too hard on then-KC Councilman Michael Hernandez and that her son, I assume she was probably referring to Tony, needed someone to look up to and that The Star was hurtng those chances. Guess what, Michael Hernandez gets indicted about six months later on federal corruption charges. He eventually pleads guilty and goes to jail. I'm guessing that in Tony's case, the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

McClatchy Watch said...

Sounds like your beef is with Tony's mother.

John Altevogt said...

Rita Valenciano is one of the thugs who went over to Frances Semler's house to intimidate her. She is now in community relations with the DOJ, hired during the Bush administration.

McClatchy Watch said...

John, she went to Semler's house? Jeez.

Anonymous said...

As a former Star reporter, let me tell you that Tony Botello has zero credibility.

The sad part is that although he has no credibility and is an unabashed racist in his own right, people give him a pass.

Notice how the Star now possess and passes off their very own racists and bigots?

Maybe you all should have not fallen for his mothers scam and turned the shop over to the real perpetrators?

That "Diversity" (entitlement) game sure did come back and bite you all in the ass. There is no doubt about that.

John Altevogt said...

She and several other people went as a group. Semler's husband suffers from a heart condition and the visit could not have been good for him.

Anonymous said...

This from University of Missouri J School:


Best News?

By Emily Smith

Researchers from the University of Missouri School of Journalism recently completed a comprehensive comparison of citizen journalism sites (news sites and blogs) and traditional media Web sites. They found that despite ongoing reports of financial troubles and cutbacks, legacy media are more comprehensive and more technologically advanced than citizen media and bloggers.

"We found that legacy sites offered almost double the percent of news (89 percent) in comparison with citizen news sites (56 percent) and three times that of blogs (27 percent)," said Margaret Duffy, faculty chair in strategic communication in the Journalism School. "The topic coverage on blogs and citizen new sites is generally narrow and the sourcing is light."

Duffy and Esther Thorson, associate dean for graduate studies at the school, along with Steve Lacy, professor at Michigan State University, and Dan Riffe, professor at the University of North Carolina, analyzed citizen news sites in 47 towns and cities across the United States. They found an average of fewer than two citizen news sites per city. Two-thirds of the sites were blogs, and the other sites contained news content.

"One of the biggest surprises we found was that mainstream media Web sites were almost as welcoming to citizen participation as citizen journalism sites, and they were far more welcoming than blogs," Thorson said. "Many industry professionals hope that citizen sites will democratize news media, but that hope has yet to be realized."

Results from second phase of the two-part study revealed that many of the citizen sites and blogs examined in the first phase had become dormant or disappeared. While some citizen sites and bloggers are doing well, many are struggling to survive and support their efforts, Duffy said.

Other key findings from the report include:

Blogs were less likely than citizen news sites to permit posting comments or emailing the site.
The majority of mainstream sites provided rules and policies for contributing stories and photos.
Blogs and news sites were more likely than legacy media to post links within stories to outside sources. However, citizen sites linked to legacy news sites twice as often as legacy sites linked to citizen sites. Citizen sites used legacy sites as news sources.
The study, "Tracking and Analyzing Community News Models," was funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Knight Foundation. It recently was published in the State of the Media 2009 report by the Project for Excellence in Journalism.

McClatchy Watch said...

John -- any photos or videos of the thugs who went to Semler's house?

Anonymous said...

This from University of Missouri J School:


This would be the same University of Missouri J School who employs professor emeritus John Merrill? The professor who was fired from his outside employment for Plagiarism?

Please explain why anyone would even bother to post this tripe from a school so wracked with fraud and continues to allow him to infect the minds of student still today?

Anonymous said...

It is worse than just that. His stolen words were lifted from one of his students. J School is pathetic anymore.

John Altevogt said...

I don't recall if any of the local media outlets filmed the event, or not. The Star did do an article about it.

Anonymous said...

Get your facts straight.

John Merrill hasn't been a professor at the MU School of Journalism since 1980. But why let a fact stand in the way of a broadside you wanted to make?

Anonymous said...

9:53 PM Do you mean Professor Emeritus John C Merrill who currently remains listed as a member of the faculty of the Missouri School of Journalism?

The John Merrill who's address listed by them is 3 Neff Hall, Missouri School of Journalism and who's email address just happens to be

So, I don't know if you think everyone is stupid or it is just a matter of you are, but it matters not. John C. Merrill the plagiarist remains a celebrated member of a shamed and degraded institution whether you like it or not.

I'll bet that he was the one that taught you to lie like that.

Anonymous said...

Nobody is lying. Norm Stewart has an office at MU but he is no longer the basketball coach at Missouri. Same type of thing. I never had JM for a professor and I think he deserved everything he got but you obviously have a bone to pick with the J-School, which remains the best institution of its kind. But feel free to sling insults. If you went to MU J-School, they obviously didn't instruct you in human relations.

Anonymous said...

The school remains associated with the man that brought great discredit to the institution and in fact wrote one of their latest text books on ETHICS of all things!

You call this the best institution of it's kind. It is no wonder Journalism is in the state that it is in.

The J School is a laughing stock and brings great discredit to the entire institution as none other have anywhere aside from Berkley for quite some time.

Now, tell us all about how he isn't part of MU anymore. I love your lame attempts to disassociate yourself from the reality.

Anonymous said...

You are without a doubt the most disagreeable SOB I've run into in years. Anyone holding an opinion that isn't in lockstep with your highness is a fool, a liar, someone who amuses you and your superior intellect.

What you are is an asshole.

Couldn't get into the MU JSchool, huh? Thought so.

Anonymous said...

Anyone holding an opinion that isn't in lockstep with your highness is a fool, a liar, someone who amuses you and your superior intellect.


Not at all true. You did lie and you misrepresented the truth when caught and called on it.

Face it. Merrill brought discredit to the school and the continuing relationship furthers the disdain.

Couldn't get into Missouri J School? What a hoot. All you have to do is say..."I'm a Minority" and you're in.

No dahlin, Northwestern here. Where integrity matters and ethics isn't just another word.

Anonymous said...

Didn't lie. A professor emeritus is not a working professor. Read JM's last column. He even says he is not a professor at MU J-School.

And Northwestern? I might have known. On campus only newspaper as opposed to a city paper like the Missourian. TV station? No.

Also, last I looked, Northwestern's enrollment in journalism is either minority on need scholarship or whites who can afford to go anywhere. No middle class at Northwestern.

Not saying Northwestern doesn't have a great Journalism school. It does. Just not as good as Missouri, or Columbia for that matter.

Anonymous said...

2:18 PM,

She killed you with Medill. You don't just enroll there as you do in Columbia. That is the creme de la creme and everyone knows it.