Suppose They Gave A Press Briefing And Nobody Came

In his latest attack on America’s free press, President Donald Trump this morning threatened to take “press credentials” away from the news outlets he deems “fake news.” How many news outlets would that impact? Depends on how Trump defines fake news, but by his own estimate, “91% of the Network News about me is negative (Fake),” which presumably means only Fox News would be credentialed.

Aside from likely being against the First Amendment, and the public’s right to know what the White House is doing -- or at least, what it says it’s doing -- the move could be the best thing that ever happened to the legitimate media’s coverage of the White House.

Instead of wasting resources covering bogusy White House press briefings, serious journalists could spend that time working actual sources to uncover and report bona fide news about the Trump Administration.



One of the best suggestions I heard early on in Trump’s presidency was that instead of being spun -- and bashed -- at the White House press briefings, the major news organizations should send their interns to cover it. The strategy would have two benefits. The first would be freeing senior journalists up to do more earnest work. The second would be sending a message to the White House about how irrelevant its spin actually is.

So instead of Trump sanctioning legitimate news organizations whose coverage he doesn’t like, they should take the upper hand and simply ignore the White House press briefings.

2 comments about "Suppose They Gave A Press Briefing And Nobody Came".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, May 9, 2018 at 4 p.m.

    I recall a time early in the Obama administration, Joe, where there was talk of denying access to Fox as it wasn't a "legitimate" news organization. At that time all---or most--- of the other "news" media---including MSNBC----protested and indicated that they would boycot briefings and other stuff if Fox was excluded. If Trump carries out his threat and bans MSNBC, NBC, ABC, etc.---which I doubt will happen----it will be interesting to see if Fox acts in the same manner as its colleagues years ago---or goes along with Trump's dictate. I think that Fox would probably "do the right thing"----but I could be wrong.

  2. Gabe Samuels from Gabe Samuels, Media Consultant, May 9, 2018 at 10:37 p.m.

    Right on, Joe. I couldn’t agree with you more. I’m glad you said it, since you have done a much better job than I would have.
    i just think that the presidential tweet is not just offensive, it shows a surprising lack of understanding of the importance of the media. 
    Send in the interns - after a few days’ “strike “ - and see whether the White House can figure out who needs whom more.

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