Friday, 18 April 2008

Editors are more neurotic than readers

"58 percent of editors said letting journalists join online conversations and give personal views would harm journalism, but only 36 percent of the public agreed."

Nice to have some research back up this counter-intuitive claim that we've always assumed here. Of course, it's not quite as satisfying as saying that 64% of the public thinking that it enhanced journalism, but you can't have everything.

This research is from an Online Journalism Credibility Study.

Other interesting findings:

Some 70 percent of editors surveyed said requiring commenters to disclose their identities would support good journalism, while only 45 percent of the public did.

Expressions of personal views seem to help boost readers' interest and trust in Web sites, said John `Bart" Bartosek, editor of The Palm Beach Post in West Palm Beach, Fla., and chairman of the credibility committee for the AP managing editors group.

"That's contrary to most of the traditions we've all grown up with, to keep our opinions, viewpoints and personal lives out of our story," Bartosek said.
Somewhere in there is something about readers feeling more trust when they feel they know the person behind the journalist (c.f. blogging).

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