Can Journalism Be Saved: A Conversation with Nicholas Lemann

March 21st, 2020

Nicholas-Lemann-canobiefilms.us_.jpgOne of the seemingly consistent things about creative destruction, particularly as a result of technology, is that we have a short memory for what came before the change. We remember just immediately preceding a dramatic shift in some vital element of our lives, but we forget what came before. It has the patina of making us nostalgic for the remembered past, even though we forget the long history.

This certainly seems to be true of journalism. We look at the landscape of what venture capitalist Jason Calacanis calls “late-stage journalism” and we see a world that is certainly far from what folks once though was the Golden Age of journalism in the 60s, 70s, and 80 and ’90s. But as a part of broader history, the picture is different. And perhaps it is only in seeing that difference, that we can adapt to the economic, political and socials needs of journalism today.

To talk about this, I'm joined by the journalist and Dean Emeritus of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, Nicholas Lemann.  His story, Can Journalism be Saved, appears in the most recent issue of the The New York Review of Books.  

My conversation with Nicholas Lemann: