Society for Features Journalism Conference in Tucson

I attended a panel discussion on the media’s handling of the Rep. Gabrielle Giffords tragedy in January. Below are the panel members and are listed left-to-right for the corresponding photographs posted on Facebook.

Robin Abcarian, LA Times
Capt.Adam Goldberg,
C.J. Karamargin, comm,. dir for GG,
Stephanie Innes, AZ Star Medical Reporter
Katie Riley, U of A, APR
Jaimee Rose AZ Republic
Letitia A Gonzales

The most interesting points made were that local reporters like Stephanie Innes from the AZ Star focused a great deal on walking the line between respecting the privacy of the victims and their families and trying to get the news out. They all knew each other and so it was a very personal experience for them and since they live here, they were concerned about maintaining positive relations with everyone.

This was in contrast to how larger media acted when they descended on the story although no one was pointedly critical of anyone. Stephanie Innes said those interviewed were very hospitable and whatever angst they were feeling, they did not take out on the reporters which was a pleasant surprise.

C.J. Karamargin said he is still amazed at the “insatiable appetite” for any Gabby-related news months later.

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