David Folkenflik

Geraldo Rivera of Fox News has described NPR's David Folkenflik as "a really weak-kneed, backstabbing, sweaty-palmed reporter." Others have been kinder. The Columbia Journalism Review, for example, once gave him a "laurel" for reporting that immediately led the U.S. military to institute safety measures for journalists in Baghdad.

Based in New York City, Folkenflik is the media correspondent for NPR News. His stories and analyses are broadcast on the network's newsmagazines, such as All Things Considered, Morning Edition, and Here & Now, and are featured on NPR's website and mobile platforms. Folkenflik's reports cast light on the stories of our age, the figures who shape journalism and the tectonic shifts affecting the news industry. He profiled the Las Vegas columnist who went bankrupt fending off a libel lawsuit from his newspaper's new owner; conducted the first interview with New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet after his appointment; and chronicled how the demands of technology have forced the press corps to change how it covers presidential primaries.

Folkenflik is the author of Murdoch's World: The Last of the Old Media Empires. The Los Angeles Times called Murdoch's World "meaty reading... laced with delicious anecdotes" and the Huffington Post described it as "the gift that keeps on giving." Folkenflik is also editor of Page One: Inside the New York Times and the Future of Journalism. His work has appeared in such publications as the Washington Post, Politico Magazine, Newsweek International, the National Post of Canada, and the Australian Financial Review. Business Insider has called Folkenflik one of the 50 most influential people in American media.

Folkenflik joined NPR in 2004 after more than a decade at the Baltimore Sun, where he covered higher education, national politics, and the media. He started his professional career at the Durham (N.C.) Herald-Sun. Folkenflik served as editor-in-chief at the Cornell Daily Sun and graduated from Cornell with a bachelor's degree in history.

A four-time winner of the Arthur Rowse Award for Press Criticism from the National Press Club, Folkenflik has received numerous other recognitions, including the inaugural 2002 Mongerson Award for Investigative Reporting on the News and top honors from the National Headliners Club and the Society of Professional Journalists. He was the first Irik Sevin Visiting Fellow at Cornell and speaks frequently across the country. He often appears as a media analyst for television and radio programs in the U.S., the U.K., Canada, Australia and Ireland. Folkenflik lives with his wife, who is the senior director for original content at Audible (wholly owned by Amazon), and children in New York City.

So here we are. Noisily embraced by the plurality of Republican voters, not-so-quietly reviled by most Republican leaders, Donald Trump is all but assured that party's presidential nomination.

Journalists astonished at the result — and believe me, most are stunned by what has unfolded — find themselves confronted by some form of this question: Are the media to blame for Donald Trump?

A prominent columnist for the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the largest news organization in Nevada, resigned after being told he could no longer write about two of the state's biggest players, including his newspaper's new owner, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson.

"If I can't do my job, if I can't hold the heavyweights in the community to account, then I'm just treading water," the columnist, John L. Smith, told NPR in an interview. "It wasn't an easy decision to make, but there was no other decision to make — at least in my mind."

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

For more than a generation, politicians have been on notice that political opponents would hold them accountable through deep dives into their records — a practice called oppo research.

This election cycle, candidates for the White House also have found themselves trying to dodge a buzz saw: BuzzFeed.

NPR is acting to clarify the role of longtime analyst and commentator Cokie Roberts after she co-wrote a syndicated newspaper column calling for "the rational wing" of the Republican Party to stop Donald Trump's march toward its presidential nomination.

Soon after its launch in 1986, the satirical magazine Spy picked Donald Trump as the brash embodiment of a crass age. Founded by Graydon Carter and Kurt Andersen, the magazine chronicled New York's obsessions with wealth and social status, zeroing in on Trump's questionable business dealings (of which there were many) and his outlandish personal traits (of which there were perhaps even more).

I'm comfortable to talk about anything, Bob Woodruff says. I'm lucky to be alive.

In January 2006, Woodruff stood on the precipice of stardom as the new co-anchor, together with Elizabeth Vargas, of ABC's World News Tonight, the heir in many ways to the legendary globetrotting anchor Peter Jennings, who had died of cancer the previous summer.

Univision Communications Inc., the parent company to the nation's leading Spanish-language broadcast channel, has acquired a controlling stake in the satirical news site The Onion, NPR has learned.

The agreement between two seemingly disparate media outfits was described to NPR by a person with direct involvement in the negotiations. A second person who was briefed on the deal by Univision executives also confirmed its broad strokes. The amount of money involved in the deal was not disclosed. NPR has also obtained a memo from the CEO of The Onion announcing the deal to staffers.

The secretive sale late last year of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Nevada's largest news organization, to the family of one of the wealthiest men in the country set off shock waves in that newsroom.

The vast financial and political interests of the billionaire casino magnate and major Republican donor Sheldon Adelson raise nettlesome questions about how the paper can cover him.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Donald Trump has changed the rules of engagement with the media and all on his own terms, driving his campaign through a sustained barrage of interviews on major TV shows, staging huge televised rallies and picking fights with his opponents on social media.

The media have been along for the ride, thankful for the ratings, reveling in a colorful character charting an unpredictable course atop the polls, and fearful of missing what might come next.

A story about a deadly terrorist attack briefly inspired a frenzied media scrum Friday morning in Southern California when dozens of reporters and TV news crews entered the home of the two shooters in the San Bernardino massacre.

The documentary The Hunting Ground, a searing look at the failure of American universities to grapple successfully with campus rape, has been embraced by CNN and shortlisted for next year's Oscars, while helping to sharpen the focus of college administrators.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

South by Southwest — the music and interactive media conference that takes place in Austin, Texas, each year — has a controversy on its hands.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

On Thursday, Josh Tyrangiel announced his resignation from Bloomberg News, where he was editor of the Bloomberg Businessweek magazine and oversaw strategic thinking for the rest of its news operations as chief content officer.

The photographs of 3-year-old Aylan Kurdi, his lifeless body washed up onto a Turkish beach, forced the current refugee crisis onto front pages, home pages and Facebook feeds across the world this week.

"The image resonates personally before it resonates professionally," David Miliband, president of the International Rescue Committee, and the former British foreign minister, told NPR. "Anyone's who got children can't help but think of the worst for the moment."

It's all too raw: the grieving of survivors, the images of carnage, the way we learn of events and the way we consume them.

Viewers of the morning show for WDBJ-TV in Roanoke, Va., actually watched the deadly shootings of reporter Alison Parker and videographer Adam Ward. And they watched it live, unexpectedly, without warning. So did the program's anchors, who were themselves shocked, initially uncomprehending, appalled.

Journalism isn't brain surgery — a distinction wrapped in a witticism that CNN's Sanjay Gupta must be tired of hearing.

Yet while he was covering the aftermath of a deadly earthquake in Nepal this year, the journalism evidently proved trickier than the brain surgery. Gupta, a star news correspondent and Emory University trauma neurosurgeon, appears to have misidentified a patient on whom he operated. The tale of how that happened, both twisty and subtle, throws fresh light on Gupta's dual roles as doctor and reporter.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Recent reports have suggested that Brian Williams' professional purgatory is about to come to an end. NBC suspended its chief news anchor early this year for falsely claiming that the Army helicopter in which he traveled while covering the 2003 invasion of Iraq was shot down by a rocket-propelled grenade.

NPR has named Michael Oreskes, a top Associated Press executive and former New York Times editor who has led newsrooms in such global centers as New York, Washington and Paris, to run its news division.

Officially, Oreskes will be the network's senior vice president for news and editorial director, a slightly refashioned title. Oreskes is currently vice president and senior managing editor at the AP, where he oversees the giant international news wire's daily report.

The parent company of NBC, Comcast, has turned to a familiar figure to lead the network's troubled news division, naming Andrew Lack as chairman to shore up its credibility, its finances and its stability.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Pages