The good ones tell you when they’re wrong

I’m very sympathetic to Jay Rosen’s critique of American , particular The View from Nowhere perspective which renders so much journalism writing sterile and context-free. 

There are some journalists out there who are a pleasure to read because they write in their own voice. They don’t shy away from the subjective nature of good reporting.  Instead, these journalists will actually interpret events they report on and present events within a wider context. And, when they get things wrong, they tell you. To wit:

  • Spencer Ackerman of Wired’s Danger Room admitting he was wrong in his earlier hagiographic coverage of David Petraeus.
  • David Weigel of Slate admitting he was wrong about the effect of Presidential debates on close races.
  • Felix Salmon of Reuters admitting he was wrong in his critique of the composition of the Goldman Sachs board of directors.

This is what real intellectual honesty looks like.