The panelists discuss whether online paywalls are changing the way reporters write their stories.
A piece by Tim Burrowes in Encore magazine points out print journalists have traditionally been taught to follow the story pyramid, in which the most important facts are included at the very beginning of the story, with less and less important details lower in the story. This allowed editors to ax the bottom of the story if the space was needed for another story or an ad.
The panelists talk about reporters who plagiarize and/or make up quotes and other details.
The issue is in the new after Jonah Lehrer resigned from the New Yorker. About a month ago he admitted taking material from his earlier pieces for more recent work. Now it's been revealed that his new book includes fabricated quotes by Bob Dylan.
The Internet is making it easier to double check reporters' work, which causes panelist Lisa Kernek to question why reporters think they will not get caught. Panelist Mike Murray suggests hubris might be at play.
The panelists talk about hyperlocal news coverage and The New York Times' decision to end its affiliation with a couple hyperlocal blogs.
Hyperlocal news coverage reports stories down to the neighborhood level. One of the concerns with the idea is whether there is enough money to support such coverage.
Shop Talk Panelist Mike Murray said his father edited a small town newspaper that included news from a variety of tiny communities in the region. It could be considered an early version of what is now referred to as hyperlocal coverage.
The panelists discuss whether Facebook attracts narcissists or turns users into narcissists.
The New York Times' Tara Parker-Pope raised the issue in a recent blog. She refers to a study by Christopher Carpenter, Associate Professor of Communication at Western Illinois University, which suggested Facebook appeals to our most narcissistic tendencies.
The panelists talk about whether journalism is the best major for students who want to be reporters.
While it might seem obvious that a journalism degree would be best for a reporter, panelist Lisa Kernek points out a broad liberal arts education is required because reporters need to know about a lot of different things. She majored in history and found that provided a good background for being a journalist.
The panelists follow up on last week's discussion about the future of newspapers by talking about the future of public radio.
Minnesota Public Radio journalist Bob Collins questioned in a blog whether public radio is still willing to take risks. He wondered if a program such as A Prairie Home Companion would be given a chance if it were introduced today.
The panelists talk about the New Orleans Times-Picayune's recent decision to cut back to just three print editions per week. The 175-year old newspaper also handed out pink slips to numerous employees last week.
Panelist Lisa Kernek believes there is a move in the industry toward creating a hybrid between an on-line newspaper and one that's in print. She is saddened by the news out of New Orleans, though she thinks print will not go away.
The panelists talk about the past, present, and future of investigative journalism.
The starting point is the Watergate investigation. Sunday, June 17, marks the 40th anniversary of the break-in at the Watergate Hotel, which started an investigation that eventually led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon. He is the only American president to resign from office.