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SBD/March 29, 2012/Media
Poynter Review Examines Knight's Kentucky Omissions, Trayvon Martin Coverage
Published March 29, 2012
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DRAW A LINE: Meanwhile, Poynter Institute Ethics Group Leader Kelly McBride examined ESPN employees’ handling of Trayvon Martin’s death, a Florida teenager who was shot and killed Feb. 26 by a neighborhood watch captain. ESPN.com’s Jemele Hill “did a very nice, tight column this week explaining how the lives of professional athletes are connected to the life and death” of Martin. That was contrasted with ESPN’s “bouncing back and forth on whether its talent can post a photo of a ‘hoodie’ via social media in solidarity with the family” of Martin. As a journalism organization, ESPN “should do more work like Hill’s and less like the self-expression of several others -- including ESPN anchors Trey Wingo and Mike Hill, NFL reporter Michael Smith and Grantland writer Jonathan Abrams -- who donned hoodies in their Twitter avatars.” McBride wrote Hill “practiced journalism,” and it is “so much more effective than pulling up the hood on your sweatshirt and taking a picture.” McBride: “If you want to make a difference, explain the story, don’t become part of it” (ESPN.com, 3/27).