Poynter's Kelly McBride Urges Media To Prioritize Context Over Speed When Reporting On Trump's Tweets 

McBridge: “We Need To Figure Out What The Strategy Is In Order To Cover It Accurately And Not Necessarily Play Into His Hands” 

From the December 11 edition of CNN’s Reliable Sources:

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BRIAN STELTER (HOST): Let me go to this weekend's tweets. Kelly McBride, we’ve heard from Trump this morning, talking about secretary of state job, saying he hasn't made a decision yet. There’s been reporting that there may be a decision soon, that he's thinking about candidates. What do you make of Trump's use of sort of Twitter and cable news together, right? He watches cable news, he reacts on Twitter, and then cable news reacts to him, this real time feedback loop. 


KELLY MCBRIDE: Yeah, he has the press cycle figured out. And he is a master of it right now. And I think that what the media is going to have to do is start operating on two fronts. Because we're in this really weird place where as soon as he does something on Twitter, we want to put it out because everybody wants to be fast. So he says, "The New York Times is failing." Or he says that Boeing, “We should cancel the Air Force One order on Boeing.” And immediately, we tell that story that he said something outrageous on Twitter. But we don't bring the context up as quickly as we should. It usually takes a couple hours to get the context up. And in the meantime, the rest of the audience, the audience that is either a supporter of Trump or maybe still in some middle ground where they want to give him the benefit of the doubt, they're looking at our reaction to that and the fact that we're calling it outrageous as evidence that, “See, we're against Trump.” And so it plays right into his hands. We have to from the very get-go be able to analyze what his motives are and stop assuming that his tweets are bombastic, thoughtless tweets and instead assume that he has very carefully thought them out and that there's a strategy behind them and we need to figure out what the strategy is in order to cover it accurately and not necessarily play into his hands. 


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