By Nikkia Adolphe, PR Director
As PR and Marketing professionals, we can all agree that the public’s sentiment concerning the media this year has been divisive. Like most Americans, I happen to believe that our new President has a lot to do with the misinterpretation, quality, and believability of the news we consume every single day. Despite evidence of our leader’s tirades and rants, one positive thing has come out of this: Donald Trump has made American journalism great again.
This was one of many key points I took away from CNN’s President Jeff Zucker, who spoke at Atlanta Press Club’s Newsmaker Luncheon last Tuesday. Now, that statement may come as a surprise to you (as it initially did for me), but there are truth and power in those words. Here’s why:
Real facts trump fake news any day (pun intended). While our president is busy making ‘fake news’ a trend, it has cleared the way for journalists to truly be journalists. “It’s allowed the media to tell the world’s stories, and to tell them accurately,” according to Zucker. This, in return, captures trust, believability, and dependability between the media and the masses.
Holding the powerful accountable creates compelling stories. We’re also able to reinforce the real foundation of what the ethics of journalism was built on, which forces us to ask the tough questions and hold others responsible. In Zucker’s words, at the core of any journalistic organization is fairness and accuracy; this influences us to keep those who are in power and of authority accountable and answerable for their words, their actions, and their intentions.
News mediums are (finally again) enjoying astounding audience numbers. There is a tremendous interest in news and information today. The fact is that cable news networks are experiencing record audiences. The same holds true for once-before print-first powerhouses like The New York Times and The Washington Post, who have made huge headway in the digital arena. We are in a phase where there’s a clear appetite for opinion, and it looks like it’s here to stay.
Looking ahead, we are genuinely in the great pursuit of effective and meaningful journalism. And while these major changes in The White House have managed to shake things up in the media realm, we are positioned to really shift the way we reach our audiences. We are also in control of the narratives we decide to create, and readers have the freedom to choose how they want to consume it.
As PR and Marketing professionals, we are practicing our best work at an opportune time. Sure, there will be challenges along the way, but nothing notable and innovative comes with perfection. Let’s all praise the revitalization of American journalism in all of its factual, ethical, accurate, and dependable glory.