Jessica Pressler of New York magazine writes that there should be more of a demand for business journalism going forward to explain what’s going on in the economy and on Wall Street.
Pressler writes, “One of the things that’s become wildly, hugely evident over the past year, from the early stories about subprime mortgages to the confusion over the bailout, is that there are frighteningly few people in America who understand complex financial instruments, or even just the basics of how markets function, and there are fewer still who are able to explain these things to others in a reasonable manner. And American people are hungry for information about the economy, they want to know what’s going on, which is why CNBC’s ratings have skyrocketed and Andrew Ross Sorkin, as one of apparently ten to fifteen people who can report stories on this, has had like twenty page-one bylines in the past two weeks.
“‘I’d say it is just the opposite,’ Sorkin confirmed when we asked him what he thought of Starkman’s assertion. ‘Financial journalism is more important than ever. It’s like firefighters and the biggest house on the street is now ablaze.’
“And when the fire is out, and we’re looking at a changed financial landscape, won’t there be even more of a need for journalists who can record the rebuilding of the American economy? We’d also argue that when â€” if â€” the turmoil does end, a channel like CNBC will retain a decent percentage of these new viewers, who after this scare might not want to slip back into ambivalence. In fact, bad as the market is right now? We’d even bet on it.”
Read more here.