RealClearPolitics Media Watch

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Two New Eyes With So Much to Watch

In a world that just has to be spinning faster than ever before, has anything changed more than how the media operates, and how we process and receive all the information it is providing - and literally every second?

It really wasn't so long ago that all one needed - and could get - was a good newspaper or two, 30 minutes of TV news, and a radio dial locked into a local station to feel informed and up to date on all that was happening around them.

Were they simpler times? It seems like it, but every day I wake up, the day before seems simpler.

I am an old newspaper guy. Growing up, I thought the greatest job in the world surely had to be that of a sports reporter. I began thinking this right after it became painfully clear to me that I would never generate a living playing a game.

I started as a voracious newspaper reader, broke into the business as a sports reporter, became an editor, then a news manager, and finally a managing editor. It was hard work, but it was the best job in the world - besides, of course, those lucky stiffs that got paid for playing games.

As I progressed through my newspaper career, people began finding their news in many more places. Cable TV and 24-hour news and sports channels sprung up. Every year, there were more channels and more news. And there were fewer newspapers ...

Then came the Internet. And there were even fewer newspapers ...

Honestly, keeping watch on the media and how it is doing its job is impossible. There is just so much of it these days. Even the definition of 'news' seems to be changing right before our eyes. For instance, there is far too much partisanship in the media for my liking, but it seems as if there is no going back now.

My gosh, there is so much news, just keeping watch of the people who watch the media encompasses several full-time jobs.

But I've been charged to do just that - monitor the media and how it does its job, and how its job is changing. Every effort will be made to provide a thorough look at the most important trends in the business, how news is presented, and how, if at all, standards are changing.

Good work and developments in the media will be applauded, and when criticism is tendered, it will be backed by reason.

I will also encourage you to let me know how I am doing, and still love a good, juicy tip just as much as the next newshound. So fire away!

- Doug Clawson, January 2010