Mis-communication... ex-communication

Posted by: Stephen Baker on February 16, 2005

A gem by Jay Rosen commenting on the fall of CNN news exec Eason Jordan. Rosen says, “The solution when you mis-communicate has to be more communication, not ex-communication.” In other words, once embroiled in the controversy over a statement implicating coalition forces in the killings of journalists, Eason and CNN should have taken on the very difficult issue, and pushed lots of reporting on the story. The goal: to replace Jordan’s initial speculation with solid journalism.

A related posting by Dave Weinberger calls on bloggers and other media to be a more forgiving when public figures commit gaffes. Without forgiveness, he says, no one "will survive the glare of the public."

My feeling is that they'll survive, but only by keeping their mouths shut. People shouldn't have to undergo a rigorous editorial process before venturing an opinion. Put it another way: To say something new, you often have to risk being stupid or wrong. This freedom to screw up is a pillar of our democracy.

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