The fur was flying this past weekend as The University of West Terrier’s Cuthbert School of Journalism hosted the largest print media conference in Park history.[pullquote]The era of anonymous reporting is over. If you are hiding your journalists’ identities, you are hiding their biases, and you are not being forthright with your readers.—Nathan DiPressa, Executive Director, Association of Non-Mammalian Park Newspapers [/pullquote]
Virtually all print media organizations and associations were represented at the conference, which was jointly chaired by the Cuthbert School’s dean, Gertrude C. Owl, and journalism professor Ludwiga Saimiri, the former director of the Centre for the Incorporation and Integration of Interspecial Values in Journalism (CIIIVJ).
Attendees pinpointed a baker’s dozen of hot button issues, ranging from ensuring fair coverage, recognizing equality of species, maintaining journalistic integrity, and finding new tools for recruiting the young, to financial issues, opening up new revenue streams, and more. But most agreed that the number one issue at this year’s conference was transparency. And, in that respect, The Mammalian Daily came in for some heavy criticism, particularly from the Association of Non-Mammalian Park Newspapers (ANMPN).
Nathan R. DiPressa, Editor-in-Chief of The Reptile Register and the Association’s Executive Director, spoke at length about the need for Park newspapers to be transparent in their coverage and asserted that certain major outlets had failed miserably in that regard. As an example, he cited The Mammalian Daily, whose reporters have been working, as he called it, “undercover in plain sight.”
“The era of anonymous reporting is over,” DiPressa declared. “If you are hiding your journalists’ identities, you are hiding their biases, and you are not being forthright with your readers. We can smell your fear [of transparency] and it is turning us off reading your newspaper,” he declared.
Priscilla Weevil, Editor-in-Chief of The Serangga Star Adviser, not only agreed with DiPressa, but went further by issuing a challenge to The Mammalian Daily:
“We call on you to open up and start including the names of your reporters in your bylines by the beginning of 2016. We can think of no valid reason to obscure them.”
Although Mammalian Daily managing editor Orphea Haas was in attendance, she declined to comment on the accusations, nor has she given any indication that she will consider adding names to TMD bylines.
The conference wrapped up late Sunday night with a celebratory dinner at which both Owl and Saimiri spoke candidly about the practice of journalism in The Park.
“This has never been an easy profession and it is not an easy one now, but I know no journalist who would not say that the rewards far outweigh the challenges,” said Saimiri.