National Press Club

2017 Communicators Summit highlights content creation, rebuilding trust and a call to action on ethics

October 24, 2017 | By Malini Wilkes |

Going viral with a talking squirrel. Finding the messenger who can reach your “tribe.” And a push for a new ethics code from one of the country’s foremost PR practitioners.

The National Press Club’s 2017 Communicators Summit covered all that and more Wednesday, with two panels of experts and a keynote speaker discussing the challenges of creating content in an era of “fake news.”

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Panel: Reporters have the same rights as everybody else

October 22, 2017 | By Gwen Flanders |

Amid a growing hostility to journalists over “fake news,” reporters have a greater need than ever to know their rights on the job, according to panelists in a First Amendment discussion at the National Press Club on Friday.

The Free Speech Week program focused primarily on barriers journalists sometimes face when reporting in public places or seeking information from government agencies.

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Reporters lament ‘Gawker effect’ on investigative journalism

October 22, 2017 | By Chris Teale |

After the multi-million-dollar lawsuit that forced news website Gawker to close last year, many reporters and news organizations worry about whether they will be sued as they pursue investigative pieces, a panel of experts said Thursday at the National Press Club.

Margaret Sullivan of The Washington Post, Gawker founding editor Elizabeth Spiers and filmmaker Brian Knappenberger spoke after a screening of Knappenberger’s documentary film, “Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press.”

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Trump’s criticism becomes “background music” as Times and Post push for truth, executive editors say

October 17, 2017 | By Gil Klein |

White House reporting can be challenging as President Trump demeans news coverage as "fake," but the executive editors of two of the nation’s leading newspapers said it can be done by maintaining high standards and not snapping at the president’s bait.

“If you tell the truth, if you're accurate, if you're aggressive, and you're fair, and you hold onto your principles, I think in the end, that’s the only way you can cover him,” The New York Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet told moderator Marvin Kalb on the latest edition of “The Kalb Report" at the National Press Club on Monday.

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Former TV anchor Maureen Bunyan says battle against monetization of news is lost

October 10, 2017 | By Bill McCloskey |

Former WUSA and WJLA anchor Maureen Bunyan lamented the state of TV news today at an Oct. 5 "Legends of Broadcasting" dinner conversation at the National Press Club.

She said news anchors have lost the power they had to help set an agenda for the day's newscast.

The change began when owners realized news broadcasts could be money makers if enough people watched, Bunyan said. This led to the hiring of consultants who helped managers give viewers the type of broadcast they would prefer to tune in to.

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Kornheiser, Wilbon receive Fourth Estate Award; Mexican journalists and WHCA accept Aubuchon Press Freedom Award

October 5, 2017 | By Bill McCloskey |

ESPN "Pardon the Interruption" co-hosts Michael Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser accepted the National Press Club Fourth Estate Award Wednesday night without arguing.

Usually needling each other on their show, now in its 16th year, the two Washington Post sports section alums bore the brunt of good-natured roasting at the hands of former colleagues.

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Changes in transportation come to American cities

September 27, 2017 | By Louise D. Walsh |

Web-based technology is driving major changes in transportation across American cities, said two transit experts at a National Press Club Headliners Newsmaker event on Tuesday.

“My job is to look at the future,” said Vincent Valdes from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration. In a new transportation environment, cities are innovating their transit systems with public and private partnerships. Those partners are shaping the cities of the future, already producing lifestyle changes. Think Uber and Lyft. Now imagine ride-sharing in driverless cars.

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ACA's Medicaid expansion has helped addicted find treatment but system still “overwhelmed”

September 26, 2017 | By Jean Gossman |

Panelists at a National Press Club Headliners Newsmaker event on Monday voiced alarm that proposed Medicaid cuts in the Senate Graham-Cassidy healthcare bill would cripple strapped states’ effort at addressing the opioid crisis and compound difficulty in enforcing parity between mental health and physical health care.

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"Somatotype" makes Gillman NPC Spelling Bee Champ

September 26, 2017 | By Emily Wilkins |

Dallas Morning News Bureau Chief Todd Gillman is the champion of the 2017 National Press Club Spelling Bee beating out Florida Democrat Rep. Ted Deutch with the word “somatotype.”

Somatotype is defined as a term for a body type.

The competition, which was moderated by Dr. Jacques Bailly from the Scripps National Spelling Bee, featured a team of reporters facing off against a bipartisan group of lawmakers. The press team won with a final score of 39-36 after 12 rounds.

Rather than a trophy, Gillman received a championship wrestling belt.

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Military service at home illustrated by hurricane response

September 20, 2017 | By Ken Dalecki |

The top public affairs officer for the U.S. Army told a Wednesday, Sept. 20, meeting of American Legion Post 20 that hurricanes Harvey and Irma helped show Americans how the military serves the nation at home as well as abroad.

Brig. Gen. Omar J. Jones, IV, a Maryland native, West Point graduate and veteran of infantry tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, discussed the challenges the Army and other services face with so few citizens -- about one half of one percent -- serving in the armed forces.

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