To the editor:
Recently, a columnist in the Deseret News would have you believe that KUTV did not do its "homework" when we reported a story about an effort to oust Chase Peterson, president of the University of Utah. The columnist, who writes under the banner of "Media Monitor," made numerous suggestions as to how the story could have been covered better. He also basically questioned whether there was any substance to our report.I personally wish to thank the columnist for his suggestions. All suggestions are welcome. I completely reject his assertion that our story had no merit.
We did our homework. We double-checked and triplechecked our multiple sources. We sat on the story for three days and gave Peterson ample time to respond before we broadcast our report.
But as one of my journalism professors once told me, "sometimes you gotta go with what you got." (He immediately apologized for the bad grammar.) When news organizations sit on stories, they get beat. It is not easy to be first, fair and accurate. Journalism is not an easy craft.
There is one very major point that the reader may have overlooked. The columnist is an instructor at the University of Utah. He works for Chase Peterson. He has a vested interest in the story. He carries with him a more than average bias.
When such a pointed challenge comes from one who teaches those who will carry the torch of journalism you gotta wonder, who's not doing his homework here.