RSJ grad writes book on the downfall of the news media and what to do about it

RSJ grad writes book on the downfall of the news media and what to do about it

Ever watched the news and felt like something was missing? Or read a news story and felt like you were being misled? Donald W. Reynolds School of Journalism and Center for Advanced Media Studies graduate Bob Conrad has written a new book, published by XSG Media, about the state of journalism in the era of social media that explains why.

Spin! How the News Media Misinform and Why Consumers Misunderstand (available at Amazon) explains, based on recent, peer-reviewed research and current events, explains why the news industry has changed dramatically in recent years — and not for the best.

In this book, readers are shown:

  • Where news bias really begins.
  • Why the news reporting process is prone to error  and is getting worse.
  • Why public trust in the news media is at an all-time low.

From Sarah Palin to Toyota, from science to environmental advocacy, the waters of truth are frequently muddied by the news media.

Spin! reviews studies about the news media by researchers, and it describes the author’s personal experiences in dealing with reporters and it details a number of real-life examples that dig deep beyond headlines.

Spin! explores how:

  • The New York Times used faulty data from an environmental advocacy group to mislead the nation about its water quality.
  • Two reporters received Pulitzer Prizes  — journalism’s top award  — based on false or exaggerated news reporting.
  • Toyota recall news coverage went awry, and why

Reviews have said the following about Spin!:

“Public relations professionals are often accused of ‘spinning’ stories, but this concise book (77 pages) presents a different point of view. It shows how journalists intentionally or unintentionally spin news, often ignoring the efforts of PR persons to provide accurate information.”

“It’s a thoughtfully written and thought provoking book.”

Spin! offers a quick, powerful read packed with honest and informed critique, verifiable examples and sensible solutions to the seemingly ever-eroding quality of journalistic integrity. Among those solutions is the realization that while the social media outlets found on the www have become reminiscent of another www (Wild Wild West!), we need not fear this so much as use it to our advantage in conducting our own research and calling out journalists who report half-truths or misleading information for egotistical, financial or political reasons. Absolutely enjoyed it.”

For more than a decade, Conrad, who also earned a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Nevada, Reno, as well as public relations APR credentials, has worked behind the scenes of hundreds of news stories  —  local, national and global. He has seen the best and the worst of the news industry.

While this book breaks down the journalism business, Conrad offers provocative  and practical  —  solutions for more credible journalism.

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