Nothing seems to bother press critic Jay Rosen more than what he calls the “he said, she said” model of journalism. You know, like when Warren Buffet says his tax rate is less than his secretary’s and the journalist reporting that statement feels obliged to get an obligatory “class warfare” quote from Republican trolls–and posits those two statements as somehow being equal.
Rosen is particularly bothered by NPR’s insistence on sticking to the “he said, she said” model. He’s in the midst of a two-part project to deconstruct NPR’s reporting techniques. But in the midst of that effort, Rosen was pleasantly surprised to find out that his anti-“he said, she said” model had made it into the Voice of San Diego’s editorial guidelines.
No “he said, she said.” The day we write a headline that says: “Proposal has pros, cons” is the day we start dying.
“I think the entire document is intelligent and forward-thinking,” says Rosen. “It corrects for many of the defects in mainstream journalism, and tries to inspire Voice of San Diego reporters to do better.”
Those small items are only the beginning. Rosen published the entire, rather lengthy, list of guidelines on his blog PressThink if you’re curious.