Modal close

Dear Democracy Now! visitor,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power. Democracy Now! brings you crucial reporting like our coverage from the front lines of the standoff at Standing Rock or news about the movements fighting for peace, racial and economic justice, immigrant rights and LGBTQ equality. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation—all without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How is this possible? Only with your support. If every visitor to this site in December gave just $10 we could cover our basic operating costs for 2017. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else in 2017.

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Topics

L. A. Times Secret Financial Deal Rocks Its Newsroom; Leads to Unprecedented Published Investigation Its Own Management

StoryDecember 23, 1999
Watch iconWatch Full Show

The Los Angeles Times published an unusual self-examination Monday, analyzing the newspaper’s agreement to share advertising revenue with the Staples Center arena and criticizing its own editor and publisher for their roles in the deal.

The 14-page special report by Times media critic David Shaw stemmed from the controversy over the Oct. 10 edition of the paper’s Sunday magazine, which was devoted entirely to Staples.

The newspaper did not disclose, until it was reported elsewhere, that it was splitting $2 million in advertising revenue from that issue of the Los Angeles Times Magazine with the arena. That blurring of the traditional lines between editorial and advertising departments raised questions among journalists of a conflict of interest.

The report criticizes Publisher Kathryn M. Downing, who knew about the arrangement, and Editor Michael Parks, who found out about it before the magazine was distributed but didn’t stop publication or inform readers. And the Times on Monday distributed new guidelines for employees on safeguarding editorial independence. Among the guidelines: ``The Times will not engage in any dealings with advertisers or other groups that require or imply coverage or restrict it in any way. Nor will The Times sell sponsorships of its news and feature content.’’

Many journalists criticized the Times’ deal as a violation of the principle that reporters and editors should avoid financial dealings with the people and institutions they cover.

Guests:

  • Henry Weinstein, legal affairs reporter for the Los Angeles Times. He has been with the Times for 21 years and is one of organizers newsroom protest.
  • Steve Rendall, Senior Analyst, Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, and co-host of Counterspin. In studio.

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.

Make a donation