Monday, June 15, 2009

Best assignments? A poll

A few months ago, I shared a listing of my favorite assignments. But it occurred to me on the way home from Buffalo - four hours in a car alone gives one a lot of time to think - that I haven't done enough interactive stuff on this blog.

Because a lot of folks who stop by are reporters, editors and others in the field, I thought it might be fun to just solicit the best assignments or stories that each reporter has covered in their career.

I'll try and keep this up toward the top for awhile so people can weigh in with their very favorite assignments. It could be an interview, an out-of-town trip, a special feature that you covered, etc.

If you are concerned about the assignment giving away your identity, change enough of the facts that the story so it is still essentially true, but won't give away your identity. (If the trip was to Tuscson, change it to Seattle, that kind of thing).

After 18-months of doing the Free From Editors blog, the one most disturbing thing that I see is the fear that many reporters and former reporters have of expressing their opinions in a way that might bring retribution from a former employer if their identity was known.

I spent many years questioning and taking a hard look at authority and not even for a moment have I ever worried about what would happen to me. But I understand the concerns of folks who are still in the job market and don't want to jeopardize a prospect.

It says volumes about the management and ownership of news organizations that their own employees cower in fear over doing precisely the kind of introspective questioning that newspapers are supposed to encourage.

So let's try this. If you can't figure out the anonymous posting feel free to send me your assignment at my e-mail address: jlsmediaservices (at) gmail (dot) com. (Of course, turn the "at" and "dot" into the symbol when you send the message. I just don't need any more spam.

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