Pulitzers Awarded At The 'Taj Majal" of Journalism for Snowden Leaks Stories While TV Networks Grumble and Keep Their Distance
New York, New York: First the good news: The Pulitzer Prize for Public Service was not only the best covered of its awards this year, but it recognized a series of disclosures that made many media outlets nervous, if not adversarial--the publication of NSA secrets leaked by Edward Snowden.
They recognized the reporting by the Guardian in England and also Bart Gellman's work in the Washington Post even as they, did not recognize the work directly of Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras whose independent reporting appeared in many newspapers.
Laura and Glenn still make the news world nervous because a) they are outspoken, b) not always under the control and discipline of traditional editors and have a 3) respectful and acknowledged positive relationship with their source as if that is a high crime or misdemeanor. It is significant that they were recognized by the Polk awards, but not the Pulitzer.
In some higher circles, their source, Ed Snowden, is still considered a traitor or worse.
The Pulitzer Prize is the big enchildada in the media word announced in a formal ceremony at the Pulitzer room in the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism on New York's Morningside Heights. The journalists who win these prizes are recognized for life as "Pulitzer Prize Winners" a sign that they reached the highest heights in the profession. It's a ticket to raises and more recognition.
I once was once told by a former dean of the same "J School" --where I taught as an adjunct -- that they considered themselves the "Taj Mahal" of American Journalism. I didn't have the heart to remind her that the original Taj was built as a tomb.