“IS INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING in ICU?”
Columbia University professor and Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) founding Executive Director Sheila Coronel asks this provocative question in her latest post in her blog Watchdog-Watcher.
Coronel, who now heads the Tony Stabile Center for Investigative Journalism at Columbia, takes note of how more and more newsrooms are disbanding their investigative reporting units in a move to cut costs and change business models. Curiously, the moves come even as many newsrooms pour money into the production side of news, to make their newscasts more, uhm, glossy and modern-looking. The result is, obviously, glitzy, glossy newscasts that look more like Inside Edition – and sound like Inside Edition as well.
An interesting, if not morbidly amusing, reference would be the investigative satire done in Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show, viewed below.
But before the eulogies start coming out, Coronel is quick to point out that many organizations, both big and small and both independent and commercial, are still keeping the spirit of investigative journalism alive – no matter how difficult it may be getting.
In fact, one should be careful not to wallow too much “in the narrative of investigative reporting’s slow and inevitable demise,” lest we end up only making our fears self-fulfilling.
While it is true that the digital revolution is upon us, Coronel argues, we as journalists should be far from passive watchers; in fact, we journalists must be at the forefront of making sure that we are the ones who transform the revolution, and not the other way around.
Read Coronel’s full blog post here.