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Bad News: How America's Business Press Missed The Story Of The Century

Bad News: How America's Business Press Missed The Story Of The Century

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As the recent U.S. financial crisis unfolded, journalists struggled to keep up with the biggest story of the century. After the markets unraveled and the economy began spiraling downward, reporters raced to cover an unfamiliar cast of characters and an alphabet soup of derivatives and toxic financial instruments. And in this midst of this collapse, ironically, the business of journalism itself hit the rocks, as the mainstream media grappled with collapsing ad revenues and falls in circulation. Faulted for cheerleading coverage that helped create the bubble, the business media came under siege from commentators across the political spectrum - epitomized by Jon Stewart's now - famous attack on James Cramer for his uncritical coverage of Bear Stearns and other financial giants. Did the press fail in its critical role as it gave into the irrational exuberance that fed the bubble itself? How do we explain these failures? The role of the business press in the current crisis strikes at the heart of the heated debate about the media's role as guardians of our democratic society. With contributions - all but one original - from leading journalists and academics at the forefront of this issue, Bad News is the first attem to navigate through a controversy that will be studied for decades to come.