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Dan Rather at Media Relations Summit 2009: “We in the Press Need a Spine Transplant, We Lost Our Backbone”

Dan Rather keynoted day one of Bulldog Reporter’s Media Relations Summit today in New York, and received a standing ovation. In his keynote, Rather touched on the current state of the news business: “the model of news is to make money, not serve the public interest.”

As well as the “new” media landscape: “Without newspapers to provide the bulk of original reporting, what do you link to?” He said that PR should stick to two things in the digital age: “authenticity and conversation.”

D S Simon Productions CEO Doug Simon interviewed Rather post keynote, in which the former news anchor told him, “I want to make it clear that I’m not anti business. I have worked all my life in for profit news, but [corporatization of news] is a serious problem, partly because it has become a far too cozy relationship between powerful media interests, these big conglomerates and big government…And this does affect the way news is covered and the news people read, hear and see…And you say ‘why should I care about it?’ It does exert a great deal of control over the news you get.”

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