My letter to Time Magazine

January 16, 2011 at 7:55 pm , by Steve

This is my letter to Time Magazine’s Managing Editor Richard Stengel today. I’m sure we will never see in print… so I thought I’d ask what you think. So what do you think? :)

Mr. Stengel,

You identified in your first paragraph of ‘to our readers’ the very essence of the problem of today’s journalism. ‘As journalists trying to find meaning is what defines us. It’s what we do. And we need to get it right’. Respectfully sir I could not disagree with this assertion any stronger. It is not the job of a journalist to find meaning. Period. It is the job of a journalist to inform the reader, listener or viewer of the facts. It is the job of a journalist to give play by play and not color commentary. We as consumers of your work and that of all media both organized and not is to determine for ourselves what we believe based on the facts you and your professional colleagues provide. I sir do not need you or any news organization to ‘find meaning’ for me or anyone else.

I submit that far too many ‘journalists’ are trying their best each and every day to find meaning for me. As you stated ‘we need to get it right’. Americans have witnessed time and again when you don’t.

I like most Americans can think for myself. Thank you but I do not need you to figure out what I should think. This is true across the entire political spectrum. You were exactly accurate about the discourse from left to right and back again. Any one of us can witness this ridiculous spectacle on a 24 hour news cycle every day. I wonder if those running the major news operations are more Public Relations specialists than journalists. I wonder how many others wonder the same.

I do not arrive at this conclusion lightly. I spent many years as an investigative reporter for local NBC affiliates. My last job was in Columbus Ohio for WCMH an NBC O and O. I determined at that time the world of journalism was spiraling out of control. Too many opinions based on too few facts. I resigned in October 2000 and have never looked back.

My mother was an elementary school teacher for more than 30 years and something she said once rings true today; “It is a teacher’s job to teach a child how to think not what to think”. In my opinion sir it may be something for journalists to ponder as well.

Best regards,

Steve Gruber


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12 Comments so far

by Stephen Hilbun

On January 17, 2011 at 7:59 pm

I read your letter Steve and couldn’t agree with you more. Well said!

by Greg Krebill

On January 17, 2011 at 8:00 pm

Good stuff!

by Gary Woodbury

On January 17, 2011 at 8:02 pm

Steve–you crack me up –You are right on the money !!!!!!!!!!!!! That was well thought out and well spoken—For those reasons and common sence you are right –We will never see it in print !!!!!! Great letter !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

by dennis thomson

On January 17, 2011 at 8:03 pm

i totally agree steve, i find it very insulting to have to watch the news and know that they are trying to lure me into being a left or right winger,
to me if your far right or left you are a very narrow minded person who can be controlled, i am not any party but will vote for what i believe in and who i think i can trust and that is few and far between these days sadly, and the media has become the same.

by Gary Woodbury

On January 17, 2011 at 8:04 pm

On the lighter side –I can’t believe someone said something you don’t agree with –lol—-GO GREEN !!!!!!!!–LOL

by Dennis Thomson

On January 17, 2011 at 8:12 pm

i agree totally, is rather insulting to watch tv knowing that one side or the other is trying to make up your own mind as to who you vote for, is kind of like the election never stops.
and to me if your hard left or right you are pretty narrow minded and will let anyone control you .

we all need to think for ourselves and choose who we trust and believe in , which is very hard to do in these times

by Claude J Davenport

On January 17, 2011 at 8:15 pm

Great letter Steve. You captured it all. Have a great day.

by Lance Sellers

On January 17, 2011 at 8:15 pm

good job on the letter

by Lscha Laura

On January 17, 2011 at 9:00 pm

Thank you for putting in writing what I have felt for too long. Well said!

by Norm Boardman

On January 18, 2011 at 1:17 am

Very well said.

by Russ Bartel

On January 18, 2011 at 1:32 am

Right on Steve! This should not end with only being submitted to Time, it should be submitted to every news outlet in every type of media, (t.v., radio, print, etc.) because they all could use this.

by Shawn Liverance

On January 18, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Well bud you hit the nail on the head with this one. I see it first hand nearly everyday. It infuriates me to no end. We are here to report not spew our beliefs. AMEN!!

12 Responses to “ My letter to Time Magazine ”

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