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Old June 18 2013, 01:55 AM   #99
Allyn Gibson
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Re: Rumors of a Special Surprise for the Anniversary

Christopher wrote: View Post
But I think I have the right to report on rumours when they are being discussed and debated at the highest levels - as long as that's how I present them, and don't try and pretend that they are facts. On every stage I've tried to show my working out, as it were.
The problem with that attitude, though, is that just reporting them at all gives them an air of credibility. There was a time when one of the basic standards of good journalism was that you didn't report anything until you had at least two reliable sources for it, that rumors and hearsay were not news and thus didn't deserve to be treated as news. The problem with the 24-hour news cycle and the Internet is that it creates incessant pressure to report something even when you don't have anything solid to report at all.
I agree with this, with one major caveat.

Rich Johnston takes pains to say that he's not a reporter and that what he does isn't journalism. A lot of what he does looks like journalism, but by journalistic standards it's poorly sourced rumor mongering or reporting from off-the-record sources.

In this particular case, I was curious when anyone was going to pay attention to the rumors surrounding an episode find. While I have some issues with Johnston, particularly some of the methods he uses, in this case I feel that his initial report was appropriate and the blowback he's received from some corners of Who fandom is absurd and says more about the insecurity and insularity of some segments of fandom than it does about him.
"When David Marcus cited the great thinkers of history -- "Newton, Einstein, Surak" -- Newt Gingrich did not make his list." -- 24 January 2012
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