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Wednesday, September 13, 2006

More Journalistic Integrity from the Jewish Week

You gotta love that Jewish Week. I know it's been a while, but I'm thrilled to see them back up to their old tricks. This time, it's the old anonymous sniping at the subject of an article. The piece in question talks about attempts by the American Jewish Congress, in the wake of some restructuring and other "sweeping changes", to widen their focus into that of a more international organization. Whether they will be sucessful is not really addressed, except for the obligatory (for the Jewish Week, at least) potshot at a key player, new president of the AJC Jack Rosen. The kicker? In true Jewish Week style, of course, the sniping is done by an unnamed source - one who certainly seems to have an axe - or two - to grind:
Rosen’s move toward international affairs is not without critics. “Rosen has been secretly planning how to turn his agency into the next version of the World Jewish Congress,” said one former official, “two or three people traveling around the world looking bigger than they are. He fancies himself an international star.”

The source agreed to comment only if granted anonymity because of his continuing contacts with the group.
Absurd. It's one thing to allow a critic of the organization's attempts to raise their profile to comment on point. Looking at all sides of a story is what quality reporting is all about. But to allow the source to remain unnamed for such a gossipy, yenta-like comment is just pathetic.

The Jewish Week never really surprises me anymore with these kinds of games - but it never ceases to amaze me how they just keep at it.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's nuts. You can find an anonymous critic on just about any subject. What credibility do these sources have? None. Especially for a stupid quote like this, the reporter should not have put his own credibility in jeopardy by running this quote. Which he did.

11:31 PM  
Blogger YMedad said...

well, there go AJC ads, i.e., income (the tours/trips) in The JWeek

9:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You really are a very odd one to be commenting about anonymous critics.

11:49 AM  
Blogger orthomom said...

Fred, dear, I am an anonymous blogger. Not a journalist. I don't purport to be an objective credible source of news. A journalist, on the other hand, does.

And in any event, I don't devote my posts to non-substantive, meanspirited attacks like the anonymous source did.

12:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to hear you don't purport to being credible.

2:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Let's go over this so that you can understand.

This is a blog.

it is opinion of a single person

it is not fact checked or edited

it is not news.

it does not need to be backed up with sources and quotes.

A newspaper- as the Jewish Week claims to be- is supposed to back up it's NEWS stories with legitimate quotes and references. Say the anonymous quote here is from some former employee who is still pissed off at the the AJCongress for being let go. The reader should have some context that the potshot is coming from someone credible. That is the failure of both the journalist and the editor of the Jewish Week.

3:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting. And since no one knows who you are, how are your readers to know that your were not fired from The Jewish Week or turned down from a job or the subject of some negative story, and maybe that explains your fixation and animus.

11:26 PM  
Blogger orthomom said...

Fred said...

Interesting. And since no one knows who you are, how are your readers to know that your were not fired from The Jewish Week or turned down from a job or the subject of some negative story, and maybe that explains your fixation and animus.

No one does, Fred. That's why I limit my observatons to objective ones such as the one in this post - that journalists should not allow mean-spirited anonymous sniping of the subjects of their articles. At least those journalists that want to be taken seriously. I'm not sure who could possibly make a case that the quote I referenced in this post was an appropriate one for the writer of the article to print, or that it brought any new information to the attention of the reader.

But hey, don't take my word for the fact that the Jewish Week doesn't take things like credibility very seriously. Their shenanigans have been a pet topic of many other venerable bloggers for quite some time now. Check Canonist, Krum, DB, and others.

11:35 PM  
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