Whistleblower.tv

Some of you laughed when I said that today, Deep Throat might have a blog. OK, I was wrong. Instead, it appears he’d have a vlog. MediaDailyNews has the story of a whistleblower who couldn’t get heard by MSM so he made a vlog and put it on YouTube and then he was heard.

THE WHISTLE-BLOWER WHO AIRED ALLEGATIONS on YouTube that Lockheed Martin sold the U.S. Coast Guard $24 billion worth of refurbished Coast Guard patrol boats with significant security flaws and other deficiencies says it was a decision of “last resort.” He turned to YouTube when the mainstream media dismissed his claims as “outlandish.”

“I contacted every single mass media outlet on television and probably 75 separate reporters at different newspapers,” says Michael De Kort, the 41-year-old former engineer for Lockheed Martin. De Kort was laid off by the military contractor days after he posted his 10-minute video on August 3, soberly detailing shortcomings in the boats’ security cameras, communications abilities, and cold weather capabilities. “They wouldn’t do the story.”

Following De Kort’s YouTube airing, however, his allegations were subsequently reported in the Navy Times, and then picked up by The Washington Post, NPR and other news organizations. The video has become the latest example of new media driving the old, cited by ABC News as “further evidence that the Internet has given the average person a way to be heard.”

Amen. But this drive me nutty:

Is this a case of citizen journalism sounding an alarm so loud that the mainstream media has to act? Not really, says one expert. “This is terrific, certainly if the guy is speaking the truth. But it’s not journalism,” says Edward Wasserman, Knight Professor of Journalistic Ethics at Washington & Lee University in Virginia. “It’s his story–his side of things. A journalist would take his claims and talk to other people to reach the truth.”

Journalism is a process, damnit. It starts with people who know or witness something we should know getting that out. And the official journalists sure as hell didn’t do their part in this story. So the guy got his story out the only way he could. I call that an act of journalism. So is the followup that finally came from the official journalists. In any case, journalism isn’t about stopping the news from coming out… not anymore.

Note, by the way, more coverage of the story, finally, from TV news than from print. I guess that’s because it’s a video story.

  • Andy Freeman

    > It’s his story–his side of things. A journalist would take his claims and talk to other people to reach the truth.

    Yeah right.

  • http://www.mediangler.com haydn

    I reckon if you step out of journalism for a few years, which I did, and then you come back, you notice a different mindset. The problem though is newspapers are making it hard for journalists to survive – I saw fee rates in New York as low as $40 for a story and in the UK they go low too – to levels people can’t live on. So even good journalists are being forced to work out what that means. You look at blogs and think OK I can write fast – maybe something will come of that. And you look at nespapers and you think – do I really have it in me to pitch to this one or that one again. I think a lot of us now are half in and half out of the business anyway.

  • http://planetwares.blogspot.com Planet Patriot

    Lockeed Martin is under the influence of the notorious:

    JOE BUSH a.k.a. The Monstrous Morph

    -Click on the link to see the evil evidence and. . .Warn Everyone!

    (This message not endorsed by Joe Lieberman, George W. Bush, the Republican Party, their supporters or donors. Any similarity to persons living or dead is entirely intentional.)

    Blog On

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  • http://ruthcalvo Ruth

    What De Kort did is admirable, and hopefully will result in Lockheed’s being fined or otherwise punished for its fraudulent activity, and the military will review its use of public monies inappropriately. So much poor procedure tho, such as recent findings that head of Air Force J. Jumper and friends were routing public spending to a retired friend without using the usual bid process, and like the firing of Bunny Greenhouse for whistleblowing about Pentagon spending, indicates an attitude of disregard for ethics that is completely despicable. The Congress has failed in its oversight duties, and the military heirarchy seems bereft of ethical standards when public funds are involved. Time for change of administration to one that has a bias toward responsibility instead of self-enrichment.

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  • http://www.whistleblowers.org Lindsey

    I thought you might be interested in this letter written by Army Corps of Engineers whistleblower Bunny Greenhouse, who was retaliated against after she testified to Congress last week. Ms. Greenhouse is calling on all Americans to support whistleblower protection for federal employees. To read her letter go to http://capwiz.com/whistleblowers/issues/alert/?alertid=13371836