Last month in Portland, Ore., the monologuist Mike Daisey presented a one-off show called “Journalism.” A confessed fabulist winging out his thoughts on the profession he debased by lying in a “This American Life” story? It was a bit rich for several reviewers.
“Daisey offered little depth or insight beyond a few soundbites,” Rebecca Jacobson wrote in a review of the show in Willamette Week. The work “suffered from a tone of persistent self-serving,” Ramona DeNies wrote in Portland Monthly. “What he was there to accomplish, though, seemed unclear even to Mike Daisey,” Winston Ross wrote in The Daily Beast.
I didn’t see “Journalism” the show, but I think Mike Daisey’s thoughts on journalism the profession are worth hearing out. Not only is the guy an avid consumer of media news, but he’s got a lot of experience with journalists, who’ve written about him and interviewed him before and after his scandal. Too few journalists see their work through the eyes of others or have to answer questions about it.
Daisey and I have been communicating occasionally since last July, when he objected to a post I wrote. We’ve tweeted and emailed since, and in April he invited my wife and me to a performance of his monologue “American Utopias” in Washington, D.C.… Read more