Q&A with W. Joseph Campbell
Jul 19, 2010
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W. Joseph Campbell talked about his book Getting It Wrong: Ten of the Greatest Misreported Stories in American Journalism
(University of California Press, 2010). In his book Professor Campbell looks at examples of events .. Read More
W. Joseph Campbell talked about his book Getting It Wrong: Ten of the Greatest Misreported Stories in American Journalism (University of California Press, 2010). In his book Professor Campbell looks at examples of events where news has been altered, exaggerated, or fabricated. They include: 1) that the aftermath of the “War of the Worlds” radio program in 1938 caused panic across the country; 2) that the New York Times censored itself about the Bay of Pigs invasion at the request of President Kennedy; 3) that the news coverage of Hurricane Katrina was “superlative;” 4) that the reporting of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein resulted in end of Richard Nixon’s presidency; 5) that Walter Cronkite’s February 1968 on-air statement about the Vietnam War led President Johnson to say some variation on “If I’ve lost Cronkite, I’ve lost the war;” 6) that Edward R. Murrow’s “See It Now” program on CBS in 1954 featuring Senator Joe McCarthy was responsible for the senator’s downfall; 7) that in 1897, William Randolph Hearst ever said to Frederic Remington who was on assignment in Cuba, “You furnish the pictures, I’ll furnish the war.”
Professor Campbell has taught journalism at American University for 13 years. Prior to that he worked at the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Associated Press, and the Hartford Courant.