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May 14, 2006

Reviewing the review

A commenter on the qcmediareviw blog suggests the Q-C may need a "media review site review site."

Not willing go set up a whole site, but the suggestion reminds me that I've been meaning to do a review of the review.

When qcmediareview launched around the first of the year, I had high expectations. QC is an unusual, if not unique, media market. Four of the major networks have affiliates here; print scene features Big Corporation (Lee Enterprises) vs. a family owned operation (Small Newspaper Group.) There's an independent weekly and lots of specialty publications. Not much going on in radio, despite lots of stations. Seems like about two companies own pretty close to the whole batch, but even that's a media development worth analyzing.

TV and radio have regional reach, as does print to a lesser degree. There's a reason all those presidential candidates are always running around the Q-C, getting in our way.

Been pretty disappointed so far. Infrequent posts are a problem, making qcmediareview a weekly in a split-second age. I sympathize with the problems outlined by "senior editor" about lack of time; I don't do much better than they do some weeks.

Too bad, too, that the blogger(s) have gone the anonymous route. It's easier to speak from the shadows, I guess.

Content has been pretty spotty, quality-wise. The image that comes to mind reading through the site is that of the blind men trying to describe an elephant, when one's got a hold of the tail, another the trunk and the third, a foot. Reading some posts, I see "senior editor" down on his knees, magnifying glass in hand, getting all excited 'cause he thinks two of the hairs around a toenail are slightly different lengths.

They've been absurd at times (see the Virgin Mary/Lady of Guadalupe stuff), but they've gotten a couple of good discussions going in the last month or so. The Explain It: Read It/Watch It entry and comments were interesting, as were those on Pseudo Blogging at the QC Times. The latter discussion apparently even spurred QCT to fix a problem.

More of that kind of stuff, more frequently, would breath life into qcmedia review. But so far, well, I'd have to give it about half a star.


Posted by jcb at May 14, 2006 12:28 AM

Comments

I agree with you, jcb. QC Media Review is one of those rare blogs where the comments are more interesting and informative than the original posts.

Posted by: paladin at May 15, 2006 12:12 PM

The site would be more credible if these self-styled "experts" talked more about what local media isn't covering instead of nitpicking what it does cover. There are many good, important stories out there that are ignored because local media doesn't have budgets or talent to do them.

When was the last time you actually saw an investigative piece that impressed you? Or an investigative piece of any kind? Let the media "review" folks chew that over... But perhaps they don't have the budget or the talent either.

Posted by: Tesla at May 15, 2006 10:59 PM

Now we need someone to review you.

Just kidding. Good stuff.

Posted by: dad@home at May 16, 2006 01:25 PM

To tesla: When I moved here in the mid-70s, investigative journalism was all the rage----Watergate, you know. But now, budgets are tight and few news outlets want to commit the time and money needed to do investigative journalism.

But one local example of investigative journalism is Scott Reeder's recent series about teacher tenure in IL. Reeder spent six months researching and bird-dogging multiple FOIA requests to complete his article. Unfortunately for Reeder, this year, journalists had to print something that would make George Bush look bad in order to win a press award, but Reeder's work is still outstanding and should be commended.

My main beef against Reeder and Felker is that they don't spend enough time checking up on our fabbalus elected officials in DC and Springfield, but still, Reeder's work is an example of current investigative journalism.

Posted by: paladin at May 16, 2006 04:11 PM