It is no secret that the journalism industry is in trouble -- with decreasing advertising dollars being the biggest obstacle.
The public's interests have moved from print to digital, and ad revenue has not followed at the same pace. News readers are becoming younger and sometimes changing their areas of reader interest.
Entertainment scandals trump crime. Some (not all) bloggers tap their fingers waiting on a reporter to do all the research just to rewrite their stories in blog format. Even worse some provide absolutely no attribution.
There's also a disconnect in making the public connect with a rotating lineup of broadcasters. And some readers assume that op/ed columnists don't have credible reporting. (The bias may be known, but the facts are what they are.)
But no matter the gripe from the readers or the newsroom, credibility should always be the highest principle to follow. In season 5 of "The Wire," TV writer/producer David Simon (who previously worked for the Baltimore Sun) took on dying newspapers and problems within newsrooms.
And there is no problem worse than the fictional Scott Templeton (played by Thomas McCarthy).
Even though The Baltimore Sun fictional reporter had a fictional background working for the Kansas City Star for three years and the Wichita Eagle for two years, viewers would've guessed the man was going into a Journalism 101 course with the stunts he pulled thinking he'd get away with them in Baltimore.
Season 5 of "The Wire" would be a very useful tool in any college journalism course to write essay after essay about why a reporter who acts like Scott should rethink the idea of reporting. Everyone isn't cut out for it. Some people prefer features over news reporting. Or local news over world news. Or national news over suburban news. Or travel over health. Or fashion over food. There's nothing wrong with having a preference. But anytime you apply for a career in journalism, be ready to comb through your research with teeth fresh out of the package.
Check out this list above for things Scott did that no honest journalist should ever do.
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