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By Gina Channell Wilcox

Investigative reporting: pay now or pay later?

Uploaded: Apr 21, 2009

This morning I read that the New York Times earned five Pulitzer Prizes, including awards for breaking news and investigative reporting. Three stories above that announcement in the media news electronic digest I receive daily was a report that the New York Times Company ad revenue "plunged" 27 percent in the first quarter of 2009.

Robert Rosenthal, a long-time reporter and editor with several well-respected and well-known newspapers, is now the executive director at the Center for Investigative Reporting. Rosenthal spoke recently about the disappearance of the "watchdog" role of newspapers and earlier this week spoke on PBS Online NewsHour, hosted by Jim Lehrer. about how loss of revenues will for the most part lead to the loss of investigative reporting.

Rosenthal said, in essence, it takes time and talent to produce investigative pieces. Unfortunately in most newsrooms today there is not enough time to allot to "projects" because there are newsholes to fill. And the talented journalists are often the highest paid and, therefore, the first to be laid off.

Here are two links, one from the above-mentioned interview and another from a recent piece on CBS Sunday Morning. I found them thought-provoking and somewhat disturbing. What are your thoughts?

By the way, I'm rereading "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand. Should this be required reading for everyone?