Pedro Molina

Citizen Bezos?

NEW YORK – Mijn eerste serieuze baan was als 'fact-checker' (letterlijk: iemand die de feiten controleert) voor Forbes-magazine, tegenwoordig grotendeels een losse verzameling blogs. Ik beschouw 'fact-checkers' als de koorknapen van de journalistiek. En ondanks het feit dat ik de kerk de rug heb toegekeerd, koester ik nog steeds een diepe verering voor de 'heilige' waarheid.

In de meeste bijdragen aan de discussie over bedrijfsmodellen als gevolg van de verkoop van de Washington Post aan Amazon-oprichter en -CEO Jeff Bezos, worden de waarden die ik altijd hoog heb gehouden bezoedeld. Hoe komt dat?

Zelfs gereputeerde 'fact-checkers' zijn het niet eens over de oorsprong van de beroemde vermaning aan het adres van journalisten: “Comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable!” (“Stel de getroffenen gerust en tref degenen die het te gemakkelijk hebben!”) Ze zijn het zelfs oneens over de vraag of die vermaning het eerst werd gericht aan priesters of aan krantenmensen. Hoe dan ook, de journalistiek is een bedrijfstak waarin de klant niet altijd gelijk heeft.

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