Macomb, IL – The panelists discuss the role the media played in the days after a devastating tornado tore through Joplin, MO.
It appears many residents relied on radio for information, especially in the hours right after the storm. It's been reported there was no electricity in the city for 24 hours, and land line phones, cell phones, and the Internet were all out of service.
Macomb, IL – The panelists talk about a possible change to Illinois' open records law that's being criticized by champions of open government.
Lawmakers approved the bill during the waning hours of their 2011 legislative session. Governor Pat Quinn has yet to sign it.
The legislation changes the open records law by allowing cities more time to respond to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) filings by so-called "recurrent requesters." Those are people who ask for records more than seven times in a week.
Macomb, IL – The panelists talk about the White House policy of "faking" photo ops for reporters.
Under the policy, the president broadcasts a major announcement without any distractions from photographers. Once the announcement is completed, the president reads the statement again, this time with the microphones off. Reporters are allowed to take photos at this point.
Macomb, IL – The panelists discuss the future of college radio.
The magazine Current reports some universities have sold their student station to religious broadcasters. Others have turned over operations to their public radio affiliate.
Shop Talk panelist Bill Knight is critical of universities that treat the student station as an asset that can be sold off to generate some revenue. He said the stations serve as an important learning lab for students.
Macomb, IL – The panelists discuss whether it's still possible to have a shared national experience over a news story.
The starting point for the discussion is the shooting death of terrorist Osama bin Laden. Many people around the nation found out about his death at roughly the same time, though they got the news from many different sources.
Years ago people generally tuned into the same few TV or radio stations for breaking news. Now, there are countless stations and websites from which someone can obtain news updates.