April 21st, 2014
02:02 PM ET

From Brian: 7 takeaways from April 20 show

If you weren't able to tune in on Sunday, here were some of the moments that really stood out to me:

1. We led Sunday's show with Sharyl Attkisson's story. Attkisson, a veteran CBS News investigative correspondent, resigned in March because she said she was having a harder and harder time getting her stories onto the air. In an interview, she seemed to blame a mix of political and corporate considerations, and suggested that her former bosses shied away from tough stories:

"In general, there was a pattern of more - many more stories in recent years being embraced if they were seen as being positive to government, the administration and even certain corporations, that if they were stories that were pitched that could be perceived as negative to government, administration and certain corporations."

Attkisson also said some managers at CBS "do often seem to feel defensive about - almost personally defensive about - stories that could make the government look bad." Here are parts one and two of the interview.

2. The Attkisson interview generated quite a bit of attention - here are a few of the followup news stories:

    - The Hollywood Reporter: Sharyl Attkisson: CBS News Resistant Toward Criticizing Government, Corporations
    - Town Hall: Attkisson: Some CBS Bosses Seemed 'Personally Defensive' of the Obama Administration
    - RealClearPolitics: Sharyl Attkisson: Media Matters May Have Been Paid To Attack Me
    - Mediaite: Media Matters Responds to Attkisson: Criticism ‘Based Only on her Shoddy Reporting’

3. "I think there was an expectation that the [Pulitzer Prize] committee had to recognize the reporting in one way or another, and the question was going to be how. So to learn that it was a Public Service award and that it was given to The Guardian and to The Washington Post for the work that we had done was really gratifying, because I think that is what the idea was - that we were always trying to fulfill - which was doing the reporting in public service." –Glenn Greenwald on the Pulitzer win for NSA surveillance stories

4. Greenwald also said he thinks that the cumulative effect of journalism prizes - not just the Pulitzer, but others as well - can make a difference in public opinion about Edward Snowden's leaks of NSA documents. The awards "convey to the public that this information needed to get out, and it was in the public interest that it did so. And I do think that can sway a lot of people to understand why Edward Snowden did what he did and why we did what we did."

5. It's been almost a year since the first stories based on Snowden's documents were published by The Guardian and The Post. Greenwald said his forthcoming book, due to be published in May, "includes a lot of new stories from the Snowden archive." He said, "There were stories that I felt from the beginning really needed the length of the book to be able to report and do justice to. So there's new documents, there's new revelations in the book that I think will help inform the debate even further."

6. With a high-stakes Supreme Court hearing about television and copyright law on the docket this week, I interviewed Chet Kanojia, the chief executive of Aereo, the company that's being sued by all the major broadcasters. Here's the video.

STELTER: The broadcasters say: this is theft. You say it's… what?

KANOJIA: It's consumers' right. They have a right to pick the technology they want to use, as long as they control it.

STELTER: Whether it's an antenna or Aereo?

KANOJIA: It's an Aereo antenna, a RadioShack antenna, a RCA antenna, or a TiVo DVR…

The market is changing, unquestionably. Aereo is not forcing that change. This trend was beginning way before Aereo existed. Netflix is happening. All of these things put a lot of pressure on these companies.

7. A Web site recommendation: On "Reliable," former State Department spokesman Jamie Rubin weighed in on the media's tendency to distill complex issues into personality conflicts, with Obama vs. Putin being the current example. Afterward, I asked him about his go-to Web site for coverage of international affairs. He said it's Real Clear World, an offshoot of Real Clear Politics.

Hope you'll tune in next Sunday at 11 a.m. Eastern!


Filed under: Reliable Sources
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