Monday, December 29, 2014

The journalistic methods of Anne Barnard

"There have been tensions in the southern province of Sweida, residents say".  Explain this one to me, Ms. Barnard? When you report about a country (from another country, mind you) and you write that "residents [in that country] say", what do you mean and how do you substantiate that? How many of the residents have to share a view with you to qualify as "residents say"? How many residents told you that? One or 20 or a 1000 or 10000? And does the foreign editor of the Times require any documentations for such generalizations about a whole resident population? How would you, those of you who are professors, respond to a student who employed this phrase in a research paper?