Setting the record straight ... on reporters posting in forums

AP reports that a Pennsylvania newspaper has fired a reporter for posting anonymously to forums on the newspaper's website.

According to the story, the reporter, Justin Quinn, began posting to "set the record straight" and eventually started adding his own opinions.

Quinn should have known better. But so should his editor, Ray Shaw.

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Fair and balanced? No, just affirmation

According to BBC/Reuters/Media Center research, the most trusted media brand in the United States is Fox News, and the most trusted in Egypt is Al Jazeera.

This tells us something about "credibility" that I find troubling: A great many people aren't looking for fairness, or balance, or authoritative reporting, or accuracy, or the other values of professional journalism that some of us, at least, hold dear.

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Doing what scares you

I like Vanessa Gezari's Poynter centerpiece, "Casting Off the Parachute," discussing the world of the freelance foreign correspondent.

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Reporting on rumors (10 "facts" on immigration)

I grew up in a world where editors could make the rules. "We don't report rumors" was one of them.

Those days are gone now, and reporting on rumors is one of the major shifts for professional journalism. No, we shouldn't repeat them -- at least not unchallenged. We have a responsibility to correct them. It's part of that "guides, not gatekeepers" thing.

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Off the road again

Sign in a former Brugge antique shopI'm back home after a couple of weeks of travel that took me to Brussels, Brugge, Stockholm, Kansas City and Columbia, Mo., in pretty much that order. International travel induces a kind of vertigo in which old things, when you return, seem new, and I don't mean just the weeds that appeared everywhere in my lawn during my absence. Ideas and issues are bumped out of their comfortable positions.

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Some science on the registration question

Kudos to Jay Small for sharing discoveries from a carefully test of registration models at Scripps newspaper sites.

In a test at 13 newspaper sites, Scripps modified the so-called threshhold -- the number of "free" pageviews a visitor is allowed before being challenged for registration or login -- and carefully measured the results.

Pulitzers still stuck in a bygone era

E&P's Joe Strupp has a wrapup of how online components figured in the Pulitzer Prizes announced yesterday. While online elements were included in many of the winning entries, they were limited to text and still photographs -- no audio, no video, no interaction.

Strupp quoted Sig Gissler, prize administrator: "There are others to consider down the road," Gissler noted. "We will be making other change as circumstances change."

Circumstances changed last century.

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