The Editor's Back Fence

Jean Quan is Pilloried in Press Because??

Tuesday June 10, 2014 - 10:09:00 AM

Just in case you happen to be teaching a journalism class (as I'm sure many Planet readers are) you might just google stories about "Jean Quan" which have appeared this week. I don't have a favorite among the many (17+ ??) candidates for Oakland mayor, but the stories about Mayor Quan being rear-ended are so obviously biased that I might be tempted to give her a sympathy vote if I lived in that city. The wicked newsies are fully aware that since the Mayor is a public figure they can drop the customary "allegedly" for unproven charges without fearing a libel suit. The Chron is the worst, but today's story on KQED radio was also dreadful.

The Mayor was once spotted answering her cell phone while driving, and once cited for sliding through a red light, okay? No newsy ever did that, nosiree. And since she did it before, you can be sure she's done it again, right? QED! If and when she's cleared by the phone records she's offered to place in evidence, you can also be sure that the story will be small, on the back page,no photo.