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a261: Re:a254 Documenting Misery (fwd)

From: Fred Wardenburg <fwardenburg@msn.com>

I see the story of the television journalist who pressed the market woman
with questions a little differently through the lens of having been a
documentary filmmaker years ago. To get a telling  statement from an
interviewee you had, we believed, to be willing to push them past their
first well-worn statements. This particular journalist may have been
personally sympathetic with the market woman and pulling for an eloquent
statement. Or he may have been insensitive. Both are possible. The larger
point that moves me to respond is the reflexive attack on journalists:

<The upshot of stories like this one is erosion of confidence in the
benefits of documenting misery.  How unfortunate for the good journalists
out there.  And how unfortunate for the cause of communication.>

What I learned in the rough and tumble of making documentaries in the US
civil rights era of the sixties is that everyone thinks the press is against
them. This usually comes down to the complaint that the press isn't acting
like an obedient PR service.

Fred Wardenburg