What are the arguments for, against sending stories to sources before publication?

Washington Post reporter Daniel de Vise is under the spotlight for allowing sources to review one of his stories and suggest changes prior to publication.

Forrest Wilder of the Texas Observer outed de Vise Tuesday after obtaining email exchanges between him and and his sources at the University of Texas at Austin. The emails reveal that de Vise sent his story to UT’s director of media outreach, telling her:

“Everything here is negotiable. … If you or anyone at the university has any concerns about it, I implore you to direct them to me. I'm one of a very few reporters here who send drafts to sources!"

Wilder's piece has continued a recent debate about whether it's OK to let sources approve quotes and information prior to publication. In a live chat, Poynter's Kelly McBride discussed the controversy surrounding this issue, sought input from the audience and offered related advice.

You can replay the chat here:

  • Mallary Jean Tenore

    As managing editor of The Poynter Institute’s website, Poynter.org, I report on the media news industry, edit the site’s How To section, and moderate the site's live chats. I also help handle the site's social media efforts, and teach social media sessions on the side.


Related News

Email IconGroup 3Facebook IconLinkedIn IconsearchGroupTwitter IconGroup 2YouTube Icon