The panelists discuss the practice of quote approval in exchange for access to sources. Some journalists allow sources to read and approve quotes before a story is published.
David Carr of the New York Times wrote about the practice in a piece with the headline "The Puppetry of Quotation Approval." He wrote, "What pops out of that process isn't exactly news and isn't exactly a news release, but contains elements of both."
The panelists discuss a proposal to create an alternative American communications system. The catch is that the idea was suggested by University of California - Berkeley Professor Robert Cirino in 1977.
Cirino developed his plan at a time when cable was in its infancy and the Internet could only be found in science fiction.
The panelists discuss whether it's imperative to get both sides of the story every time a reporter covers an issue.
Panelist Lisa Kernek said it's more important to verify facts and be transparent about how the facts are obtained. She said reporters should strive to get at the truth in an objective way. Kernek said it's not as simple as giving equal amounts of space or time to both sides.
The panelists talk about whether it's possible to measure the impact of journalism.
An article by Jonathan Stray on the Nieman Journalism Lab's website raises the question. “If democracy would be poorer without journalism, then journalism must have some effect. Can we measure those effects in some way?” writes Stray.
He reports a fellowship program at the New York Times will try to find the right metric for news.
The panelists talk about the trend toward hyperlocal coverage for small radio stations.
An article in the Naperville Sun highlighted several stations in the Fox River Valley that have succeeded by focusing on their own specific community rather than trying to attract the larger audience that's possible in the Chicago area. Station personnel feel they know their listeners -- and their listeners know them.