Bad Journalism + Biased Editor = The Gray News

Monday, July 17, 2006

Gray News ethical failings not only a local perspective

Biasbuster has been condemned for putting forth the truth about bias in the local media, The Gray News. Some people think that The Gray News is above reproach and/or they can do no wrong.

I do have some knowledge of these things, but I recognize that being anonymous the information put up here carries less credence with some. That is why I try to stay fact based and give source comparison so you can decide. Even still, some people are hesitant to see the light, saying 'it's just some anonymous person saying these things,' or as one bon vivant put it, a 'nasty old harpy.' Ahem.

Anyway, here is some comment from other persons, named, from the industry, who think that participating in the news that you cover is BAD BAD BAD. And Unethical.

In 2000, the Portland Press Herald did an article about the Gray news's ethics and lack thereof. Quoted was Sheldon Toplitt, an attorney who teaches media law and ethics at Boston University's College of Communication, and he said "some principles are so basic that they apply to a paper as small as the Gray News. One of them is making sure that news reporters and newsmakers do not have common ties and interests."

"Toplitt said the deal with the school district [getting free rent in exchange for not printing anything bad about the District], and Clark's [elected] seat on the Charter Commission, make it difficult for the paper to meet the community's need for an impartial source of news. "You can't help but (have) an appearance of impropriety."

"Marian McCue, editor and owner of The Forecaster in Falmouth, said she forbids reporters from being active in local politics. "It's just being respectful of the power you have," said McCue, whose weekly tabloid covers Portland's northern suburbs. "The integrity and credibility of the paper means everything."

Hmmm, unethical AND disrespectful. What a shame. Newsprint is a terrible thing to waste.

6 Comments:

  • I saw the harpy comment. I'm just curious, do you get a lot of nasty comments that you delete? Do people like Debbie, Ray, Nathan, or Paul try to post here, but their comments are just not appropriate enough?

    And just so you know, I'm thankful for this blog. I think you do a fine job. :)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:30 PM  

  • Yes, I do. About 1/3 of the comments I get are snide, or attacking, or disprespectful. Those I delete out of hand.

    Except for Debbie no one signs their name, so I do not know if its Paul or Ray or Nathan. However, from the writing, I beleve that I can tell that it is Nathan who does his share of nasties. As Paul. But I cannot say for sure.

    I put up the harpy one on a whim so people could see the type of comments that come across from insecure people threatened by a blog that discusses the problems of a little 12 page paper in one small town in Maine.

    With the bombings in Israel and an incompetent president and oil prices so high and the inconvenient truth of global warming and clitorectomies in Africa, I think that saying 'the Gray News should not accept freebies from the school department' or 'its editor should not be so angry in print' is pretty small potatoes to get hepped up about.

    So here's another one: 'The Gray News people should know their place in the world, and it's not on top of Faultless Mountain.'

    By Blogger BiasBuster, at 3:54 AM  

  • BiasBuster at 4:54AM wrote...

    "With the bombings in Israel and an incompetent president and oil prices so high and the inconvenient truth of global warming and clitorectomies in Africa, I think that saying 'the Gray News should not accept freebies from the school department' or 'its editor should not be so angry in print' is pretty small potatoes to get hepped up about.

    So here's another one: 'The Gray News people should know their place in the world, and it's not on top of Faultless Mountain.'"

    I say, folks, let us reexamine our priorities.

    By Anonymous Cal Cutter, at 9:12 PM  

  • Can you explain a bit more? I don't think I understand your point...thanks.

    By Blogger BiasBuster, at 9:22 PM  

  • I think Mr Cutter was trying to say "get a life" in a polite sort of way

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:36 AM  

  • Keep up the Great Work Biasbuster...you are serving the citizens of this town well. With all the deception of prior years, it is sooo refreshing to hear the Truth!!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:27 AM  

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