December 4, 2007

Reason 898 why I hate "the press"

I hate them, and I laugh with bitter pleasure each time I read of declining circulation for the nation's newspapers....

From NCR:

NEW YORK — When the Associated Press set out to investigate an apparent problem with sexual assault of children in public schools, the organization spared no expense. A congressionally mandated study by Hofstra University had already found school-based sexual abuse to be a big problem.

“It was one of our priorities for the year,” said John Affleck, editor of the AP’s national reporting team.

The result was a three-part series, available to editors throughout the country beginning Oct. 20, that revealed widespread and routine sexual assault of public school students throughout the country. The first story summarized: “Students in America’s schools are groped. They’re raped. They’re pursued, seduced and think they’re in love.”

The series told of an entrenched resistance to stopping abusers on the part of teachers, administrators and the National Education Association, a teacher’s union.

So why apparently have only a handful of newspapers nationwide run the series — in stark contrast to the avalanche of press received by the Catholic Church since 2002? Paul Colford, corporate communications director for the AP, said he was inundated with complaints from people wondering why their newspapers were not carrying the series...

And, a few figures for contrast...

...“The Boston Globe began publishing on Jan. 6, 2002, a series of reports regarding sexual abuse of children by priests in the Archdiocese of Boston,” Nussbaum wrote “In a flash, newspapers around the country began reprinting the Globe’s reports and developing their own. They published 728 stories in January; 1,095 in February, and 2,961 in March. By April, these papers were publishing a new story every nine minutes, 160 every day, 4,791 for the month. By year-end, American papers provided their readers over 21,000 stories of sexual abuse by Catholic priests.”

Boston Globe editors contacted by the Register claimed only vague knowledge of the AP series, and could not answer as to whether part of it ran in their paper....
Posted by John Weidner at December 4, 2007 5:57 AM
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