National Press Club

Political Reporters Defend Election Coverage from Charges of Bias

November 14, 2008 | By Gil Klein

CLEVELAND – Barack Obama may have gotten more favorable media coverage during the presidential campaign, but it was not because news reporters are biased, leading Cleveland political reporters told an NPC forum Wednesday.

Tom Beres, senior political reporter for WKYC-TV3, said Obama ran such a different and such an effective campaign that describing it objectively made it sound like the reporter was biased toward the Democratic candidate.

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Print Journalists Still Print -- and Shoot Video, and Take Photos, and Provide Live Commentary, Panel Says

November 12, 2008

"Newspapering" is no longer the strict job definition of USA Today correspondent Donna Leinwand, she told students at six universities in five Western states Monday.

As she covered the aftermath of Hurricane Ike in Houston and Galveston, Leinwand traveled with a videographer through the devastated area.

“I’m a print journalist, the type with a notepad,” she said, waving her notepad at the TV cameras in the Club's broadcast studio that was Webcasting the forum.

“But we had a camera mounted to the front of the car, and I had a microphone as the photographer was driving down to Galveston,” she added. “I was giving running commentary that was running live on the Web so that people could see what I was seeing as I was seeing it.”

She described the rooftops blown off, the storm damage, the weather and what exit she was at.

“We had 6,000 people or so following along on the Web as I drove down the highway,” Leinwand said. “I had no idea if people would be interested in that kind of stuff. It seems that they are.”

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Election Provided "Wake-up Call" for Traditional Media, Panel Says

November 10, 2008

SALT LAKE CITY - The way the presidential election was covered - and the public's reaction to it - was a wake-up call to traditional media that it must maintain its credibility if it is going to stay
alive, leading journalists here told a National Press Club forum Thursday.

"On Tuesday night, for the first time in the history of the craft, there were so many voices that it was very difficult to separate the voice of what we would call traditional media and the voice of all the others," said Con Psarras, news director at KSL-TV, the Salt Lake City NBC affiliate. "That confuses people."

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DNC, RNC Chairmen Review Presidential Campaign at Luncheon

November 6, 2008

The Democratic and Republican national committee chairman paid homage to their candidates, voters, and the political process, and fielded pointed questions from the audience today at a sold-out National Press Club luncheon.

We accepted this invitation long before we knew how the election would turn out, and that was a bit of a risk, joked DNC Chairman Howard Dean who shared the stage today with RNC Chairman Robert M. (Mike) Duncan. My heart goes out to Mike, because I know he is in a tough spot.

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In a Changing Market, News Organizations Need Freedom to Innovate, Journalists Tell NPC Forum

November 3, 2008

MILWAUKEE – The editor of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel says he is able to succeed because the paper's local ownership gives him the ability to make changes quickly and to concentrate on what he thinks will work.

Marty Kaiser, the paper’s editor in chief, said he could make the decisions to keep an emphasis on investigative reporting and to make quick changes to take advantage of the Internet because he did not have to wait for approval from a corporate headquarters.

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Panelists See Need for New Products, Models in Journalism

October 31, 2008 | By Gil Klein

DES MOINES, Iowa – New thinking in how to attract advertisers will be essential to regenerating the income necessary to keep quality journalism alive, leading news executives said at a National Press Club forum at Drake University Wednesday.

“The business model is clearly broken,” said Laura Hollingsworth, publisher of the Des Moines Register, part of the Gannett Co. that announced this week another 10 percent cut in personnel.

Supporting quality reporting and investigative projects is the essential piece of what the company is doing, she said, but it is only one piece.

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Reporters Getting Burned with New Technology, Panelists Say

October 29, 2008 | By Gil Klein

COLUMBIA, Mo. – News organizations are burning out reporters by demanding that they use more and more different types of technology to tell their stories, leading journalists said at a National Press Club forum at the University of Missouri Monday.

Yet there is scant evidence that this new technology is bringing in enough revenue to save journalism jobs and support the news business, they said.

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Nader Calls on Liberals, Progressives to Make More Demands on Obama

October 27, 2008 | By Mark Schoeff Jr.

Ralph Nader does not agree with the right-wing of the Republican Party on any issue. But he does admire the way that it makes GOP presidential nominees pay attention to their agenda.

The liberal and progressive portions of the Democratic Party don’t make the same demands of their candidates for the White House, which sets back the causes that have inspired Nader to run as an independent candidate for the third election in a row.

“Votes have to be conditioned,” Nader said at an Oct. 24 Newsmaker.

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Sprint's OK, But Don't Regulate Internet, CEO Says

October 27, 2008 | By Jerry Bastarache

Sprint CEO Dan Hesse told an Oct. 24 NPC luncheon that despite the Wall Street meltdown, his company has a positive cash flow and "plans to revolutionize the wireless industry," but he warned against moves toward "net neutrality" proposed by some Democrats.

"Regulating the internet has horrendous implications," the 33-year veteran of AT&T told the crowded ballroom.

Reacting to current economics, he said a friend told him the financial nosedive is worse than divorce. "I lost half my wealth but still have my wife," which brought gales of laughter.

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It's a Rebuilding Time for Papers, Panel Says

October 27, 2008

SPOKANE – With the latest round of staff reductions, Gary Graham, the new editor of the Spokane Spokesman-Review, hopes he has hit “ground zero” and can start regrouping and rebuilding the newspaper staff, he told a National Press Club Centennial Forum here Thursday.

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