Jay Cronley: Where journalists are concerned, you can learn a lot from the good ones
BY JAY CRONLEY World Staff Columnist
Friday, January 11, 2013
1/11/13 at 3:02 AM
Many media members are punks.
Perhaps you've noticed.
They project themselves into stories that don't require it and execute their jobs primarily for the glory, the stray award. They can't take criticism and wouldn't know good humor if it bit them on their backsides.
Media outlets are changing.
Perhaps you've noticed that, as well.
Media outlets chase viewers and readers.
The local nightly television news usually begins with a body count.
The national nightly news usually has a political point of view. Network time is limited, and viewers are funneled toward websites where gossip rules supreme, and where most screens list what's trending, which is usually a collection of freaks.
Stories on printed pages run toward being short and plain. There's less writing, fewer original phrases, just more of the same old words arranged routinely.
Attention spans are shrinking, in length and scope.
Media members of all kinds would be better off serving the public ahead of themselves.
Just the facts: This gets the piece to its point, which is that we lost one of the good ones this week when Tulsa World reporter Brian Barber died at, of all things, the age of 39.
My most memorable dealings with Brian were as follows.
We talked movies a lot.
He liked a wide range of films, classics to the current.
I seemed to hardly like anything that was critically pertinent or made a lot of money. He was always adding rating stars to my rotten reviews of films and trying to get me to see and feel things that would improve my cinematic perspective.
And when you needed to pepper something you were working on with facts having to do with this city, you didn't go to the computer first, you went to Brian.
He was so good at what he was doing because he knew more than many of those he was covering.
Getting sappy over his death would do him no favors.
It's better to learn from those with a lot to give and carry on with what they did best, which in this case was consistently display an open mind, a fair and accurate nature, and an abundance of courage.
Brian had two heart transplants.
Think before you complain.
Original Print Headline: You can learn a lot from the good ones