As we dive into the current election campaign, J-Source looks back at the 2008 campaign.  J-Source’s then Editor-in-Chief, Ivor Shapiro looked at Election 2.0: the blogging, the truth squad/reality checkers, and the media’s promises to dig deeper, and listen to their audiences.

J-Source has started tracking the coverage, but how’d we do last time around?

As we dive into the current election campaign, J-Source looks back at the 2008 campaign.  J-Source’s then Editor-in-Chief, Ivor Shapiro looked at Election 2.0: the blogging, the truth squad/reality checkers, and the media’s promises to dig deeper, and listen to their audiences. He found innovation on the web and a whole lot of opinion writing, but enterprise reporting, platform analysis and ground-shifting user involvement remained in short supply. Be sure to check out the five-part series to see for yourself how coverage compares.

Let’s see if this time around journalists can prove Andrew Coyne wrong, who blogged mid-election ’08:

“In
one respect every election is the same: the press coverage. It’s always
an embarrassment, and always in exactly the same way. Politicians learn
from their mistakes, sometimes. We just go on repeating ours. … After
every election we retire, defeated, to our newsroom post-mortems, and
each time we vow: never again. Never again will we sit up and beg for
our “Gainsburgers,” the little meaningless morsels of news the parties
dole out each day to keep us complicit in their charades. Never again
will we chase after every fleeting poll, salivate over every minor
“gaffe.” Never again the gotcha question, the silly photo op, the
constant search for “defining moments” and “turning points,” the
investing of trivial campaign mishaps with symbolic import — as if the
great river of events were just naturally teeming with metaphors for us
to fish.”

Visit Election Coverage ’11 regularly for news and opinion on how news organizations are handling the campaign.

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