It has long been a truism that media do not hold themselves to the same account as they do the institutions they cover. Their need for transparency and public accountability is the subject of Erik Wemple's latest media column for the Washington Post. He surmises that, for all their criticism of the U.S. government's information-control approach, media might be even less open and would benefit from practicing what they preach.
Andrew Sullivan summons outrage and intemperate language to note the "surrender" by media to advertisers, specifically in the decision by Time Inc. to reorganize its operation and have its editors report to the business executives. The New York Times noted the move earlier this week as part of a story on Time's plan to spin off its publishing company. Sullivan concludes: "This is the way the press ends. Not with a bang, but a 'revenue opportunity.'"
The New York Times, in an editorial that describes Edward Snowden as a worthy whistleblower, urges the Obama Administration to end his vilification and find a way to encourage him to come home. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who has been the source of several major stories in the last year on surveillance at home and abroad, has been living in Russia after he fled the U.S. A criminal count has been placed against him, but the Times suggests none of his disclosures has harmed U.S. intelligence. "When someone reveals that government officials have routinely and deliberately broken the law, that person should not face life in prison at the hands of the same government," the Times editorial board wrote. The Guardian, whose former columnist Glenn Greenwald worked with Snowden to divulge the surveillance secrets, has also written about the need for leniency. It said the government can exercise "moral courage" in providing clemency.