Te’o “Hoax” Shows Reporters Don’t Have Enough Time to Report?

Manti Te’o, on the bench. (Wikimedia Commons)

Journalists the country over scrambled Thursday to find answers to the growing questions about Notre Dame football star Manti Te’o’s fake girlfriend.  Pete Thamel combed through the work he’d done for a story on Te’o, saying “I sat down with Manti Te’o for a story that was due two hours after the interview concluded.”  Jim Romenesko published a letter from former Newsday editor/critic Diane Werts that blamed the lifespan of this “hoax” on the fact that “reporters are no longer given time to report.”  Many have decried the oversights in fact checking that allowed the story of the fake girlfriend’s death to live for so long.

Chicago Sun-Times Wants Journalists to Work More for Their Money

Lucy Morgan has the right idea: shoot video and talk to your editor at the same time. (Flickr Creative Commons: State Library and Archives of Florida)

How’s this sound?  The Chicago Sun-Times wants its journalists to work 10 hours a day before they can qualify for overtime pay, according to Jim Romenesko.  They’re also calling for the “creation of a new, lower-paid classification of reporters, photographers, designers and copy editors” to work for as low as $13.50 per hour in an intern capacity, with the hopes of being hired as (ostensibly) part of the higher-paid classification.  We know the newspapers are trying to gauge the best way to handle this crisis of technology.  The European newspapers are starting to feel the plague too.  The notion of “overtime” does seem to change in online journalism, where the cycle doesn’t abate.

Clark Kent Quits the Daily Planet

The Daily Planet gets zapped. (Flickr Creative Commons: arellis49)

Clark Kent quits the Daily Planet in the latest issue of Superman by regaling the fictional paper staff with a well-timed speech about the mores of journalism.  “Go easy on us mortals, Clark.  Times are changing and print is a dying medium,” one of his colleagues replies.

Superman’s alter ego seems to be  four or five years behind on sentimentality for the sanctity of print news.  Jim Romenesko quoted the comic’s writer as saying “this is really what happens when a 27-year-old guy is behind a desk and he has to take instruction from a larger conglomerate with concerns that aren’t really his own.”

Here continues the morass of pop culture representation of journalists as either moralistic anti-capitalist crusaders or soul-sucking wretches who smoke cigars.  Also, Clark Kent doesn’t have to worry much about his backup plan: his moonlighting gig is pretty solid.

The comments on Romenesko’s post on this were pretty smart, too.  See: “Quitting?  In reality, he’d be a victim of staff cuts…”