Thursday, July 5, 2007

The failure of journalism begins at home

When a reporter takes all her cues from City Hall, the ensuing story is likely to read something like the one the Courant published on the Liberty Square development this morning - completely lopsided.

The viewpoints opposing the proposal weren't even given a complete sentence in the story. The clause, representing these other views ("Some had criticized the project, citing the parking plan and the decision to move the former church, among other concerns,") was made a complete sentence by another clause ("but City Planner William Warner said he looks at it differently.") which tells you all you need to know about the story - it was dictated by the city planner and transcribed by the reporter.

The fact that two Council members, one from each party, opposed the development on grounds that the process of selecting the developer was flawed, is ignored. The fact that aside from the developer, four citizens spoke in favor of the development (two who don't live in Middletown), and that five residents opposed the plan as proposed, is given no mention.

My analysis of the Council meeting is covered in a post here. While I support commercial and retail development on that site, I think the proposed plan needs changing to be the best for the site, the city, and for safety.

The Courant missed those points completely.

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