Journalism | St. Louis Public Radio


This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: July 22, 2008-  In his new book, "Flash Frames," Don Marsh, host of KWMU's St. Louis on the Air, takes readers through his nearly 50 years of broadcast news experience, covering big stories from the hot days of the Cold War to the Midwest flood of '93.

Within four years of when he came on board with the American Forces Network in Germany in 1959, the Soviets constructed the Berlin Wall, the Cuban Missile Crisis put the world on the verge of nuclear warfare and President John F. Kennedy became the fourth U.S. president to die at the hands of an assassin.

African diary - Bahir Dar

Jun 21, 2008
Women wield long palm leaves sweeping the litter and dirt out of the gutter in Ethiopian town. 2008. 300 pixels
William Freivogel | St. Louis Beacon archives

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: BAHIR DAR, Ethiopia - It is Saturday, market day, in this regional capital an hour’s plane ride northwest of Addis Ababa. The road from the airport to the university is crowded with farmers walking their goods to market.

Villagers in traditional dress veer to the side of the road to avoid our car. Some drive small herds of sheep or goats. Others lead burrows and donkeys loaded with firewood or bags of charcoal. Men carry a sturdy, 6-foot-long stick over one shoulder to leverage bundles of goods attached at end of the stick behind their back.

African diary - Addis Ababa

Jun 20, 2008

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: June 20, 2008 - Editor's Note: William H. Freivogel, director of the School of Journalism at Southern Illinois University Carbondale and a professor at the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, went to East Africa earlier this month. He traveled through Ethiopia and Uganda with journalism colleagues as part of a State Department grant. They conducted workshops with local journalists, government officials and representatives of aid agencies. He wrote a diary of his observations during the journey. You can read his letters from a trip a year ago at the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting :

Editor's weekly: Journalism at the crossroads

Jun 13, 2008

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 13, 2008 - A few days ago, Sam Zell, who owns the Tribune Co., announced that he plans draconian cuts  for his news organizations. Because Tribune owns such luminaries as the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune, the announcement set off much gnashing of teeth in newsrooms.

"What has become clear as we have gotten intimately familiar with the business is that the model for newspapers no longer works," Zell told employees in a memo - a conclusion that I reluctantly agree with.

While Barack Obama has raised complaints about politics as usual, I've been wondering about political coverage as usual.

Long ago as a Washington correspondent, I learned the rules of the political coverage game. The object, generally speaking, is to be first to recognize that a race has reached the tipping point - the moment when momentum swings decisively to one side. Political reporters study the tea leaves - polls, contributions and endorsements - in hopes of spotting the definitive trend.

Commentary: Why the Beacon

Apr 30, 2008

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Why are you doing this? It’s a question the founders of the Beacon often get.

The short answer is we believe good reporting functions as the eyes of a community. Thoughtful analysis and commentary help all of us make sense of what we see. As traditional media have faltered economically, they’ve been providing less of these crucial services. We want to provide more.