Both Brian Stelter and Jeffrey Toobin expressed some concerns on CNN’s Reliable Sources today about one very important aspect of Sean Penn‘s interview with drug kingpin El Chapo.
At the very top of Penn’s Rolling Stone report, there’s an editor’s note reading, “Some names have had to be changed, locations not named, and an understanding was brokered with the subject that this piece would be submitted for the subject’s approval before publication. The subject did not ask for any changes.”
Now, as Toobin pointed out, quote approval is something journalists do all the time, but both he and Stelter were very uneasy with the idea of a source getting approval power over the content of an entire article.
Stelter was also worried about how El Chapo didn’t ask for any changed, because that basically means he liked the story, and he questioned whether that should be the case.
He brought up a statement from the Society of Professional Journalists’ ethics committee chair slamming the idea of source approval.
Though, as both Stelter and Toobin admitted, it is very possible that plenty of real journalists would have compromised a lot to get an interview with someone like El Chapo too.
Watch above, via CNN.
[image via screengrab]
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