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Morley Safer Leaves a Legacy of Good Journalism and a Warning to Sloppy Bloggers

Fri, June 03, 2016

by Chris Liedtke, Creative Communication & Design

Morley Safer died last Thursday at 84, rest his soul. The iconic reporter and star of 60 Minutes was witty and well known for fun, conversational stories, especially with women like Katherine Hepburn and Dolly Parton. He enjoyed his work so much that he retired just a week before dying of pneumonia. 

While he wasn’t normally confrontational, he also wasn’t afraid to challenge the truth—or his interpretation of it. Take, for example, a speech where he once made a comment that stirred up a range of cyber chat.

Safer said, “I would trust citizen journalism as much as I would trust citizen surgery.”

Although he was musing over the decline of local newspapers at a time when social media was starting to influence social norms, he actually shed light on an entire shift that had taken place in communications. The dissemination of public information had exploded with digital media and things would never be the same.

We’ve seen it happen right before our eyes as handhelds have changed the way we give and receive data. Mobile devices have made the freedom of information even freer. With these, virtually anyone can report on a scene that’s deemed newsworthy, whether it’s hard-hitting, soft, or sensational.

While this has been extremely exciting for users who want to know everything at lightning speed, Safer likely posed a caveat to all consumers of information that we must carefully discern the message. And for  architects of modern communication he highlights the need to constantly deliver rich and insightful content that’s anchored in truth and responsibility. If it isn’t, you risk damaging all credibility. And once that’s lost, so is your audience. 

Today’s effective communication is skillfully crafted and customized for mobile delivery. There are a lot of moving parts to get to the marketplace, but the message must always be meaningful and trustworthy. And not full of rants and ravings like the blogosphere as Morley Safer put it.

Farewell Mr. Safer. Thank you for years of great storytelling that reminds us how professional communication needs to be delivered.  



Source: http://www.adweek.com/tvnewser/morley-safer-i-would-trust-citizen-journalism-as-much-as-i-would-trust-citizen-surgery/29479

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