Journalists have their own version of “the truth”? Well, that explains a lot!

Penelope Trunk at the Huffington Post educates us on why it is okay for journalists to misquote in their articles. 

As a journalist I hear all the time from people in business that they are misquoted. And you know what? People need to get over that, and I’m going to tell you why…

She also tells us why leaving out details is important.

…Journalists who think they are telling “the truth” don’t understand the truth. We each have our own truth. When you leave out details, you might leave out what is unimportant to you but very important to someone else, and things start feeling untrue to the person who wishes you included something else

She also wants you to know that reporters are not there to report the story but, rather, are there to tell “their story”.

Here’s my advice: If you do an interview with a journalist, don’t expect the journalist to be there to tell your story. The journalist gets paid to tell her own stories which you might or might not be a part of. And journalists, don’t be so arrogant to think you are not “one of those” who misquotes everyone. Because that is to say that your story is the right story. But it’s not. We each have a story. And whether or not someone actually said what you said they said, they will probably still feel misquoted.

Bill Hobbs has been covering this on his blog.  I may be a little black and white but, if it isn’t “the truth”, are you not telling a lie?

So, when you read one of Penelope Trunk’s articles at the Boston Globe or elsewhere, remember, you aren’t reading the news.  You are reading one of her novels-in-the-making. 

Why not let the Boston Globe know what you think about Penelope Trunk’s verions of “the truth” in news reporting by writing them at ombud@globe.com

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One Response to “Journalists have their own version of “the truth”? Well, that explains a lot!”

  1. TNR finally realizes that Scott Beauchamp wasn’t telling it quite like it happened « Volunteer Opinion Journal Says:

    […] reminds me of a post I had on 7/23/07 about Penelope Trunk, another HuffiPo contributor, educating us on how “it’s always in […]

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