Investigative Journalism at its Best

Will Forks and Nikki Haley. Photo courtesy of wyff4.com

I’m not entirely sure why, but this whole “blogger having an affair with South Carolina gubernatorial candidate” story is giving me a good chuckle. Today’s lesson: how to get a good scoop via texts and social media.

Not to toot my own horn, but I have my master’s in journalism. I was a reporter for more than three years while in grad school and afterwards. I’ve covered Congress. I’ve won awards (ok, I’m tooting my own horn a little), and I would NEVER…EVER…send the following text message:

—— SMS ——

From: Jim Davenport
To: Will Folks
Sent: May 14, 2010 7:31 PM

What is this stuff about ur having an affair with Nikki Haley?
Jim Davenport-AP_ 803-917-9562

(FYI Will Folks is the blogger, Nikki Haley is running for governor. Also, I have no proof that this text is legitimate, I’m just going on reports.)

I know reporters are supposed to be ruthless, and maybe that’s why I’m not one anymore, but I just feel like the preceeding text is COMPLETELY inappropriate. First of all, Jim, you can spell out your…or should it be you’re? In fact, your sentence isn’t even grammatically correct. Please consult your AP Stylebook.

Second, could you imagine me contacting anyone in this manner? It’s not so much the texting itself, but the tone. Why not just tweet at your source? (@LindaKabot what’s this biznass bout u getting a DUI #drunkdrivingkills) I would seriously be mortified.

But I guess the biggest lesson here is that reporters can’t possibly be held to any standards if the people they are covering are complete low-lifes. WTF South Carolina. Get your shiz together. Is there nothing better to do in SC than have illicit affairs and run for office?

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