“This is one of the most dangerous times I have seen to be a journalist. At the New York Times we have lost more journalist in 25 years than in World War I, II, and the Cold War put together,” said Arthur Sulzberger, former publisher and current chair of the board of The New York Times Company. It was a sobering statistic for a room filled with potential journalists, hoping to break into the industry.
During the “Impact of Media and Truth on Democracy” event, hosted by the University of the Pacific, Sulzberger sat down with local students and journalists as well as the President of UOP, Pamela A. Eibeck, to discuss the current state of journalism and where the industry is headed.
In this day and age where President Donald Trump openly addresses the media as the “enemy of the people,” Eibeck questioned Sulzberger about his thoughts on how the media could deflect these negative comments.
“We have to trust in certain news organizations to look for reliable sources,” he said. “See the values and if it’s a pit. Look at organizations that present multiple sides of a story.”
By the media taking account of what they are producing and taking the time to get factual evidence, it’s able to depict to the public that the truth of both sides of a story are being told. Sulzberger went further to explain to young and upcoming journalists in the audience that the press is entitled to the basics of freedom of the press given by the Founding Fathers.
Eibeck also asked Sulzberger to give new journalists advice on social media today in relations to journalism.
He stated that 70 percent of retweets on Twitter regarding news are wrong. However, he said, society can make all the difference by not giving social media outlets tremendous power to lie.
With such heavy discussions in the room Sulzberger made sure to keep the audience awake and engaged by making jokes throughout the presentation.
When he was asked how we should go about gathering true information in a world that relies heavily on social media news, he replied, “Read the New York Times!” which made the audience laugh.
Before the discussion was passed onto the public to ask questions, Eibeck looked to Sulzberger for tips to help anyone interested in joining the path of journalism.
“It’s important to know how graphic design can help in the telling of stories, as well as integrating videos into stories. Methodology is changing fast. But this is the most rewarding job there is,” said Sulzberger.