Bob Woodward: Journalism’s Business Model in ‘Convulsion’

One half of Woodstein. Click for video

One half of Woodstein. Click for video

Arkansas Business media writer Mark Hengel attended Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward’s Clinton School speech last week and files a report here.

You can watch the speech at the Clinton School’s speakers Web site here.

During his remarks, Woodward said the journalism’s transition to the Web has caused the craft to cheapen itself.

Too many news outlets are fighting to throw scoops out on the Internet quickly, rather than developing longer stories that give an accurate representation of events, he said.

“Now, if it looks like you have a small advance of any kind, you rush to get it on the Web before your competitors,” Woodward said.

Speed, impatience and live reporting are the emphasis of many news outlets, he said, not providing reliable information to readers.

Meanwhile, Kane Webb of the the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette talked to Woodward about journalism, the Internet and more here, and poses this question: Could a blogger have broken Watergate?

Woodward:

It’s an if-history question. I don’t know. A blogger would not have had the backing and the resources and the editing skills of the Washington Post, I guess. If it were just a blogger alone without that, I don’t see how. It wasn’t Carl Bernstein and myself saying these things. We were the reporters. But it was the Post saying them, which had much at stake and a big reputation and a lot of experienced people who said, we believe this to be true.

The full interview here.

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