The Associated Press (AP) recently reported Sarah Palin (mis)quoting the President of the United States. The AP then provided the accurate quote but did not close the loop and point out what is not apparently obvious to AP: former Governor Palin had misrepresented what the President said.
On Meet the Press, host David Gregory sticks to his claim that the show has no obligation to vet what people say on the program. Apparently we’re all supposed to do independent research (hopefully not relying on the AP) to figure out on our own when the people Gregory invites onto his program are misrepresenting things.
No question, various news-oriented media businesses are challenged these days. They’ve responded to market pressures in a variety of ways, most visibly by working to cut costs.
But if cutting costs is the media equivalent of moving to a four-cylinder engine, abandoning curation takes the engine out of the car.
The AP need not take sides to add value and close the loop in its reporting. It just has to do its job: make the news fully comprehensible to people who do not spend their lives parsing it.
As for Meet the Press: David Gregory may think that there is a shortage of outlets for political figures to present their case, unimpeded, but I’d argue that the era of content scarcity has ended. If you don’t add value, you are increasingly a commodity, even if your show has been on the air for 50 years.