Anonymous Sources Are No Longer Frightened Little Men

april 26, 2004  10:44 am
"The source seeking anonymity isn’t 'bucking the system' -- he is the system," David Ehrenstein writes in L.A. Weekly. It's not just the Jayson Blairs of the news industry who deceive readers; it's those reporters who publish dubious information supplied by public relations representatives whose identity and motives remain concealed. In some journalistic circles, shoe-leather reporting has been replaced by a formula Ehrenstein describes this way: "Promise the bosses at your paper that you will get scoops, then cut deals with highly placed individuals to serve as their conduit to the front pages."