When We’re forced to Replace Journalism with Google

This Chicago Tribune piece on a pending protest at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops may be a harbinger of the future of journalism, and of the demands placed on consumers who want to know more than a soundbite. The 250 word “article” (published on the unwieldy Chicago Breaking News site) tell us that SNAP (the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) has called for Chicago’s Cardinal Francis George’s resignation without ever mentioning the reasons why. For that the enterprising consumer must search (alas, no links from CBN) for SNAP’s blog, where we are told that the demands stem from “recent disclosures about “several pedophile priests and corrupt supervisors” in his archdiocese.” SNAP is responding in particular to recent reports that the Cardinal has placed confessed pedophile, and “personal friend” Kenneth J. Martin as a consultant in offices adjacent to a school. (Wikipedia has details on a similar case involving the Cardinal’s failure to remove another priest. charged with abuse.)  The Tribune article shares none of this. In the past, we looked to professional journalists for such details, but increasingly we must fend for ourselves if we want details.

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