Friday, July 25, 2014

Reporting or Cheerleading?

In my post below about the loss of the most recent Shawnee Dispatch reporter it was indicated that he may have been more of a cheerleader for the city than a reporter.

Now, wait until you read this information gathered from a KORA request.  There were various back and forth emails between the city manager, Carol Gonzales and the reporter, Michael Terry concerning the Westbrooke Village project and MDDS (the development company).  In an email dated 6/19/14 to the city manager, Terry is quoted as follows, and pay special attention to the last three sentences (underlining mine):

"Can you offer me a few updated quotes from my story for next week.  I'm basically saying MDDS was granted a 60 day extension.  They are continuing to work on meeting the new deadline.  No money has been paid out and will not be paid out until deadline is met.
I assume issues like this pop up in complicated development deals.  Maybe you could say something like that.  Reassuring residents that MDDS is still committed to the project, if that remains the case."

Wow, a reporter/editor feeding a city manager ideas for possible quotes concerning a city redevelopment deal.  Is that the function of a newspaper?  With a news reporter like that, did we really need to spend money on a PIO?

WARNING!!!!!! The City Manager of Shawnee has determined that local bloggers post items that may contain bad or misinformation. Please read these posts with care and determine for yourself whether the information is valid.