Turn on NBC Nightly News and there is Brian Williams. Looking at him, you would expect him to be an Ivy League graduate with a graduate degree in journalism. After attending a community college, Catholic University and George Washington University, Williams ultimately ended up interning for the Carter administration, and never returned to college. Nevertheless, he has been an incredibly impactful figure in the homes of millions of Americans. Continue reading News Journalist Brian Williams
This was originally written here.
I have edited a few sentences to reflect changes.
Almost no one calls me in my office. 90% of the calls are my wife or a textbooks ales representative (poor souls- they are ever-optimistic.).
So, when the phone rang two weeks ago, I answered it very informally. “Unh, hello?”
“Is this Jordi?” I didn’t have time to realize I should have recognized the voice. “This is Mike Daisey.”
- Mike Daisey Performing
Continue reading “The story does not end here…”
In our third time around with the Mike Daisey and Apple story, I am left with three main thoughts, being both novel and recurring.
The first, and most prominent to me, was the question that I have not been fully able to answer across all three blogs: If this wasn’t all about Apple, would we really have cared? Did Mike Daisey’s story of Foxconn, beit true or false, only catch our attention because it was about a Man and a Company so revered by us that we couldn’t dare imagine Apple as being anything but the most ethical, the most innovative, and most popular company. But what if Mike Daisey had chosen to highlight Foxconn’s conditions under the context of Samsung, or Nokia? Would TAL have given it airtime? Would he have been asked to come to speak at tech/no? The answer I tend to believe is no, Continue reading So Why Did We Care?
In the interrupted version of Daisey’s Agony and Ecstasy of Steve Jobs, the monologue’s narrators asks, “Does truth come in ratios? Are shades of grey always the status quo?” Continue reading In the Eye of the Beholder
Does art do a better job of getting to the truth than journalism? This question really stuck out to me, especially as we dig deeper into this controversy between Mike Daisey and Apple. As we all know, this question is brought up from the fact that Daisey’s emotional monologue turned out to be not quite as truthful as it is made out to be. However, even after knowing the facts, I am still touched by Daisey’s story. Why would it still have a positive affect on me if I didn’t believe it? I think this is an important point to bring up when deciding if art does in fact bring out the truth. Continue reading “But were the lies necessary?”
When reading a news article or listening to a news podcast, how do you decide what to believe? Do you take everything at face value? Do you fact-check? The answer differs for each individual. It also differs based on who is reporting the news. But what happens when something written for artistic purposes is reported as news? The answer: the “Retraction” on This American Life of Mike Daisey’s story on Foxconn.
Continue reading Defining Words: A 1st Grade Skill is Still Applicable to Adulthood
I empathize with Ira Glass’ in his anger toward Mike Daisey. The Mike Daisey mishap is an embarrassment to This American Life. Ira Glass and producer Brian Reed both vouched for the validity of a story that turned out to be false. T.A.L. was arguably justified in retracting the radio show for its journalistic errors. The issue, however, is that Mike Daisey is not necessarily a journalist. Mike Daisey is an actor, or a type of activist. He stated, “My mistake, the mistake that I truly regret is that I had it on your show as journalism and it’s not journalism. It’s theater. I use the tools of theater and memoir to achieve its dramatic arc and of that arc and of that work I am very proud because I think it made you care, Ira, and I think it made you want to delve.” Though he does so retroactively, this quote has great importance. It is less important to me as to whether Mike Daisey thinks his work is journalism or art. What is important to me is the goal of the ‘act’ in Daiseys mind. Daisey goes on to talk about how his fabrications were woven into his narrative of his trip to China because people had lost interest in the Foxconn scandal. This is taking his apology to be truth, which I am hesitant to do. “[…]And he says that made a strong impression on him, seeing the coverage vanish like that, seeing people suddenly not interested in the workers there anymore[…]And he wanted to make a monologue that would make people care. That was his goal.”
Continue reading “Because I think it made you care”
The line between journalism and theater is clearly drawn from the podcast. We pay attention to the different morals and ethics at play here; all of which seem to cast a negative light on drama itself. We should not look to Daisy’s mistaken classification but rather to the character flaws he exhibits. Continue reading Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire
I believe Mike Daisey was unethical in his description of what transpired with the Apple factories in China but I don’t consider him a liar but a great raconteur. I believe he stretched the truth to make it sound more compelling to the audience. As journalist, one should be desire to report the facts at all times; however, as an artist you are able to unfold the “story” as you see fit.
On another note, American companies are outsourcing its labor and products to China to cut cost and have a larger profit margin. If individuals believe Apple should provide their customers with “guilt free” products, we probably should begin to reevaluate other manufacturers that we currently patronized. What does ” guilt free” really mean?
This dialogue is not the first one to surface about how bad factory employees in China are being treated and frankly I don’t think it will be the last. These thinks have occurred and we can honestly say that because it is not happening here (as far as we know) then it is their problem for as long as we can make a profit.
Can we consider this a social responsibility for us as consumers to not tolerate this type of conduct?