Quartz’s Bell on business journalism: Interest of readers is paramount

Katherine Bell Mark Sternberg of Adweek interviewed Quartz editor in chief Katherine Bell about business journalism. Here is an excerpt: Business journalism doesn’t happen in a vacuum. If you write a critical article about a company, they are far less likely to send you their next exclusive. How do you balance maintaining healthy relationships with sources, while still


Katherine Bell

Mark Sternberg of Adweek interviewed Quartz editor in chief Katherine Bell about business journalism.

Here is an excerpt:

Business journalism doesn’t happen in a vacuum. If you write a critical article about a company, they are far less likely to send you their next exclusive. How do you balance maintaining healthy relationships with sources, while still trying to hold companies accountable?

I totally agree with that assessment: You want the CEO to talk to you. The companies you’re covering are also occasionally your advertisers. And your readers: Some of them aspire to be in the position of the person you’re interviewing. If what readers want is information that helps them be better at their jobs, you can only ignore their interests for so long before you fail as a publisher.

But for Quartz, one of the reasons we worry less about access is that companies understand now that they need to address these issues differently, from a fundamental level. Part of that is pressure from workers, especially young workers, who expect their employers to live up to their values.

I should say, though, that we do more analysis than breaking news, so we have a little more distance from the people making the news.

Read more here.





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