QUICK HITS: Hoffman, Newton

Susan Moeller's picture
BY SUSAN MOELLER
Director, International Center for Media & the Public Agenda, U of Md

David HOFFMAN, president and co-founder, Internews Network:  "I think most of the discussion [in the post-morning break session] avoided the fundamental structural problem that multi-lateral organizations, like the World Bank, fund governments which are reluctant to improve their media.  That was the question that Stephen King (of Omidyar) raised which was never fundamentally answered."

Eric NEWTON, vice president, Journalism Program, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation:  "What was the most interesting in the post-morning break discussion is that several of the governance folks were simultaneously claiming they weren't doing much 'media development,' yet then describing developing information ethics, open government, distribution of information and ways to analyze and criticize.  They very much are involved in their own version of media work – because it is crucial work – but they just don't want to call it that.  If they admit they are actually setting up alternative media systems, they would have to justify not engaging with existing media systems or helping news systems evolve that are not under their control."