Starkman: WSJ needs to look in mirror


Dean Starkman of Columbia Journalism Review believes that The Wall Street Journal needs to assess itself and its journalism strategy if it wants an answer to why it has not won a Pulitzer Prize for reporting in the past six years.

Starkman writes, “A common trait among Pulitzer projects is that they are ambitious, require extensive reporting and careful writing, carry some significance beyond the normal gathering of news, and/or have some kind of impact on the real world, like, as I’ve written, fixing Walter Reed. Basically, this is work that takes a long time to do and requires some length in which to do it. And just because a project has all those elements obviously doesn’t means it’s going to win anything. Public-service projects have to be a routine and done for their own sake.

“Murdoch’s oft-stated antipathy to the concept of longform narrative public-interest journalism was the main reason some of us opposed his taking over the Journal in the first place.

“Murdoch made it painfully clear that story length was a target even before he bought the paper.”

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