Investigative Reporting

Investigative Reporting

Postby my5cents » Jul 13th, 2019, 9:52 am

Yesterday on the Michael Smerconish show on CNN he brought up the topic that many newspapers are folding (no pun intended) because of decreased advertising dollars being spent in the newspaper media. Correspondingly there is a decrease in the number of investigative reporters that do and have brought many situations to the public's attention.

I have been vocal that in BC and ESPECIALLY in the Okanagan there is virtually no investigative reporting. Our "reporters" attend press conferences and act as scribes. Taking down word for word what spokespersons state and report same.

There has been many many times were the spokesperson for an organization has left out glaring details or has glossed over essential information that cries out for follow-up questions.

I then got to thinking, yes, but one area of media reporting (right or wrong,,,and mostly wrong) does get attention. That's the "affronted" complainer. "The city cut off my electricity", "my landlord won't let me play my drums at night ", "I live in a subsidised housing project that restricts the number of children to two in a bedroom, I'm pregnant and now they say I have to move" etc.

Many of these complaints are unfounded and are played up to create news.

One recent "championing of a cause" was a Castanet's report on a woman evicted from her apartment, apparently for activities involving street people and drugs (denied by the evicted tenant).

First under the headline : "Senior Tossed to the Curb", now apparently modified to : "Homeless for 1st time at 63"

The story does contain facts, although limited. But the catch phrase formerly in the headline is still present in the body of the story : "A Penticton senior was evicted from her home this week, with all her belongings tossed to the curb, adding another member to the city’s growing homeless population."

I haven't had any dealings with the Resident Tenancy Branch, but I am aware that the process for a landlord to legally evict a tenant is a lengthy one and includes warnings, deadlines and hearing. Evicting someone is not something that is done on a whim on the a spur of the moment.

The article does state : "Mclaren, 63, was legally evicted from her home of six years this week after losing a fight with her landlord before the Residential Tenancy Branch"

So this "tossing all her belongings to the curb", the curb, actually being a location at the rear of the property, wasn't unexpected by the tenant. She just remained in her apartment waiting for it happen, then complained to sympathetic media. What should the landlord or the bailiffs be required to do ? Rent a storage locker for her and wrap and box her belongings and move them there and find a foster home for her cat ?? Perhaps then hold a parade for her ?

An IMPORTANT fact would have been, the date the landlord started complaining about the tenant, the date the RTB made it's ruling and the time frame between the ruling and the eviction. But then, why ruin a good news story with facts that might not support the inflammatory position of the story.

We have many situations in the Okanagan that would benefit from scrutiny brought on by good investigative reporting. Why waste time getting involved with frivolous complaints of suspect validity.
Last edited by my5cents on Jul 13th, 2019, 2:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it"

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Re: Investigative Reporting

Postby 65deluxe » Jul 13th, 2019, 10:13 am

Sorry, you lost me at CNN. Talk about bias and misleading. I can not dumb myself down enough to watch the sinking network.
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