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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Case Lays Bare the Media’s Reliance on Iraqi Journalists

The NY Slimes makes a big admission, the stringers they hire to "report" the news in Iraq (because they are afraid to leave the safety of the hotels) are not telling the truth. But then, the American reporters are not either, so what's the issue?

Several editors and reporters overseeing Iraqi coverage for Western news organizations said they worked hard to vet their local hires for sectarian and political ties that could slant their coverage, and offered extensive training in the rules of Western journalism. But there are no official background checks that can be conducted, as American and European companies routinely do when making domestic hires. Rather, news organizations try to get to know their prospective Iraqi hires in person and then judge them by the work they produce.

Sounds Ok so far...but then:

The reporters and editors said that they often had to filter out obvious sectarian biases from news copy, and, as a matter of policy, would not run statistics like death counts from the field without official confirmation from the military.

That last sentence, by the way, is a lie.

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