The fallout of the John Edwards paternity story was compelling to follow. How does a esteemed Senator from North Carolina, and potential Presidential candidate fall so quickly into embarrassment and scorn?
Most national media outlets would point to the National Inquirer, a weekly tabloid, for digging their heels and staying in pursuit of the rumors that Edwards fathered a child with photographer Rielle Hunter. For as much consternation and disdain that National Enquirer receives, they deserve some credit.
But, what goes into following a story that could have legs? Are the sources reliable? Is there an agenda that someone has if they offer information to a reporter? Can a newspaper/tv/radio/online outlet go with a story if they have enough to run a story?
Dave Price, political reporter and weekend anchor from WHO-TV 13, posted a link on his website “Price of Politics” about how a television station broke the news by using the basic foundations of gathering the information about Edwards and how they went about it. The story link is originally from Poynter Online, which is run by The Poynter Institute, a school for journalists, future journalists, and teachers of journalism.
Julie Moos interviews Rick Gall, news director at WRAL-TV in Raleigh, North Carolina, about how his station worked on the Edwards story and was the first television station in the nation to break the story.
With the addition of social media tools to help find and report stories, along with the internet, reporters continue to still use the phones, go on beats, and do the “old-school” work that continues to be successful in their efforts to get the story.