I remember the day I commented on a WSJ, What They Know story, admonishing them to "go tell it on the mountain" because what I knew to be true would not get as far as it would if they stayed with the train of coverage. Help had finally arrived.
This year Julia Angwin, Jennifer Valentino and other contributors at the Wall Street Journal were nominated for the highest acclaim in journalism: The Pulitzer Prize. As the results rolled in there was certainly more to this story. Other awards went to drone strike and conventional war coverage. However, the dawn of a new day in restandardising editorial priorities spoke loud and clear when coverage went to the Associate Press for breaking out a story on the NYPD's covert spying on protestors and muslims engaged in free speech activity.
"We came under relentless attack," Goldman said. "Some people thought they could intimidate us and the AP - and they were wrong."The blogosphere in the past has given the media a failing grade for complicities and careerist human frailty during times of high political strangeness in the United States. Not reporting the news on civil libertarian issues was to turn their back on their own right to report and a true moral error.
There has never been a better time in the world to report the truth of what happens in the world than now. Being an everyday truth teller is not just an intrepid job. It is dangerous to report US news. There are risks as imposing statements and actions have been taken against both whistleblowers and journalists by the highest levels of government.
Those who chronically compromised the public interests for an elitist VIP pass found it was not worth it and they could no longer do their jobs. When the economy took a hit and papers began to close, the risks may have been lessened and reporters sought to restore the worth of their profession. Today, the lights are on for those who did not see the message.
As a result of their reinvestment, the deluge of reports on public struggle for digital rights and electronic privacy are now so voluminous, one can no longer hold back the deluge. It's impossible to manage or absorb it. In 2009, this was not so.
There is still censorship. There is absolutely more to be done to restore the field for investigative journalism, reduce the blog milling and the reguritated news diet talking points and an escalated need to stop managing International reporting.
However, the Pulitzer going out to the AP and consideration at What They Know for the evolving problem of America's mass surveillance entrapment is a signal to the rest of us. Those who value news have seen the light.