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February 22, 2008 - Bill Ackerbauer
Here at The Leader-Herald, we vigorously support public citizens' right to information about things that affect their lives. Governments and agencies working in the public sphere and spending public funds must not be allowed to function in secret. By the same token, we feel our readers have a right to know about our editorial process; our lines of communication are always open for readers who have questions or comments for us.
I like the way this newspaper and others use their Web sites and editorial pages to offer readers a glimpse into the newsgathering process and the deliberations that go into deciding what stories get covered.
Some newspapers are taking great pains in the interest of full disclosure. A writer at the Poynter Institute, a media think tank in St. Petersburg, Fla., wrote this week about efforts one paper has taken to build readers' confidence. Read about the Spokane Spokesman-Review here: Rebuilding Trust
It's a bold move on the part of the Spokesman-Review's editors to broadcast streaming video of their daily news meetings on the Web. Catch them live at 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. daily here: http://www.spokesmanreview.com/webcast/
Here at The Leader-Herald, the editors meet early every weekday morning to plan our coverage of the day's local news. You probably won't see us deliberating live on the Web anytime soon, though. Our meetings at 6 a.m. are particularly hairy affairs, and as far as I'm concerned, it would be cruel and unusual (for us and for the viewers) to put us under the spotlight before we've brewed our first pot of morning coffee.
A Leader-Herald editor before his morning coffee:
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