Walter Cronkite

Reflecting Back on the Decade…

Walter CronkiteWho among us today, in the media, will die being remembered as “the most trusted name in news.” Oh, I know: Glenn… what’s his last name?! You know, the one that cries on TV.

The former CBS anchorman cared not just about the next story but about the future of reporting in a country where was known for the better part of a half century as ‘the most trusted name in news.’

So it should come as little surprise that what worried Cronkite in the last years of his life was the collapse of journalistic quality and responsibility that came with the increasing dominance of newsgathering by a handful of media corporations.

‘I think it is absolutely essential in a democracy to have competition in the media, a lot of competition, and we seem to be moving away from that,’ Cronkite told me the last time we spoke about media issues.

The definitional American anchorman, who has died at age 92, recognized that Americans would always need diverse and competing media outlets, with the resources and the skills to examine issues from a variety of perspectives — and to challenge entrenched power.”

(Via Why Cronkite Fretted About Media’s Future – CBS News.)

As technology radically changes journalism, with the “citizen journalist” movement lacking sufficient voice and resources, as Rupert wants more money, I worry that our future may be increasingly filled with unexposed corruption and undiscussed issues of the great import.