Author Topic: Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!  (Read 14667 times)

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Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!
« on: October 04, 2011, 15:49:01 »
Welcome to Milnet.ca.  Although NOT an official Canadian Forces site (with no links to or support from the CF or Government of Canada), you’re visiting a pretty valuable resource where folks in the military, as well as those with lots of military experience, share news, insights and opinions about the Canadian military.

You may be visiting to collect background information, or you may be looking for interview subjects for your stories.  We just want to share a few hints and caveats to set the right tone and context for our dealings here.
  • First and foremost, like any new user, read the Conduct Guidelines to keep yourself out of trouble.
  • Don’t be shy about sharing information about your background in your profile or in an initial posting (as was done here).  If you’re looking for interview subjects, don’t be shy about explaining what kind of story you’re working on – you can even include links to previous work to show what you’re about.
  • Also, don't be shy about explaining your process here.  Part of the Canadian Association of Journalists' "Principles of Ethical Journalism" includes "We will answer to the public for our reporting and conduct".  Milnet.ca and other public forums are an ideal place for you to educate us about how you do your job, and why you and others make the choices you make.  In exchange, our membership can help educate you about how the military works.
  • Everybody here speaks for themselves, NOT for Milnet.ca, its owner or its staff, and certainly NOT for the CF (unless they very clearly say so, which is VEEEERY rare).
  • Don’t be surprised at any skepticism if you’re looking for people to talk to/e-mail you about their experiences.  Some here have been misquoted.  Some have seen stories reflecting absolutely nothing of the reality they themselves experienced first hand.  Some have seen reporters ignore some information because it didn’t fit into what appears to be their pre-established storyline. Some have seen reporters say they’re doing one story, then end up going down another road and using material out of context.  We understand that most journalists are hard working, rushed professionals doing the best they can, but rightly or wrongly, as in any profession, the whole can sometimes be viewed based on the mistakes of the very few.
  • Along these lines, keep that in mind when writing about the military – you don’t like being considered part of a bad group because of a few bad members, and neither do most CF members.
  • How do you think the publisher of the Anytown Herald-Gazette would feel reading or hearing that they're the "editor of the Anytown Herald"?  That's how military members feel when stories have the wrong rank, job title and unit name.  The same goes for military members reading about or hearing equipment, aircraft and ships being misidentified.  Here's a Canadian Forces guide to the correct rank and abbreviations, and don't be shy about double-checking appointments, titles and unit or equipment names.
  • If in doubt, or if you have questions, PM one of the Directing Staff (some of us have been in the business, so we know a bit about what you go through) for guidance, and we’d be happy to help.
Again, welcome to Milnet.ca, and enjoy soaking in all the good stuff!

Milnet.ca Staff
« Last Edit: October 07, 2011, 14:10:56 by milnews.ca »
“Most great military blunders stem from the good intentions of some high-ranking buffoon ...” – George MacDonald Fraser, "The Sheik and the Dustbin"

The words I share here are my own, not those of anyone else or anybody I may be affiliated with.

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Offline NinerSix

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Re: Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2011, 01:15:28 »
Frankly it would take a lot to convince me to talk to any other journalist than Christie Blatchford about the military at this point.
The process is not the mission.

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Re: Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2011, 06:37:39 »
Let's stay classy.

There are lots of good journo's who want to know....remember street cred goes a lond way in thier profession as well.

Welcome and don't be shy.

Cheers.

J.
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Re: Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!
« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2011, 06:53:15 »
Frankly it would take a lot to convince me to talk to any other journalist than Christie Blatchford about the military at this point.
Fair enough - that's your right - but you can't get any change without offering to help.
“Most great military blunders stem from the good intentions of some high-ranking buffoon ...” – George MacDonald Fraser, "The Sheik and the Dustbin"

The words I share here are my own, not those of anyone else or anybody I may be affiliated with.

Tony Prudori
MILNEWS.ca - Twitter

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Re: Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!
« Reply #4 on: October 05, 2011, 07:16:34 »
As anyone wqho follows my posts knows I am no fan of journalism, government communications or, with a few notable exceptions, the people who practice both;* but I agree with milnews.ca in both aim and execution:

1. Everyone, including journalists, is welcome here and we, members of the military family and other interested participants, should treat all members with the respect and courtesy the "house rules" demand. Journalists - those who come here to learn - are a bit more welcome than others and a bit more 'deserving' of our help because what they learn here, good and bad, can be, likely will be, used to inform other Canadians; and

2. Just as some members offer patient assistance to newcomers and would-be CF members in our recruiting threads, we should be no less patient and helpful, and above all honest, with journalists who may also have questions that appear ill informed;

3. Please, please pay attention to milnews.ca's admonition about remembering for whom you are entitled to speak: yourself, yourself only; you do not speak for me, or the other folks in your platoon or unit and, above all, you do not, you cannot speak for the CF - that's the CDS' job and he is better paid than you to do it.

__________
* I have no brief for or against corporate communications - I do not expect corporations to be any more honest (with you and me) than the law requires.
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Algernon Sidney in Discourses Concerning Government, (1698)
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Re: Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!
« Reply #5 on: October 05, 2011, 07:38:23 »
Frankly it would take a lot to convince me to talk to any other journalist than Christie Blatchford about the military at this point.

Then you may wish to consider that every time you post here you leave your opinion for journalists to read and, if they choose, to quote you as an unnamed member of the CF.

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Re: Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!
« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2011, 18:24:18 »
To clarify for our members, journalists have always been present on Milnet.ca.  This post isn't to introduce something new, but to communicate the sites position on what we wish to see in terms of behaviour from those journalists who would seek to use the site as a resource.

Regards,

Milnet.ca Directing Staff
Junior officers and NCOs who neglect to guide the thinking of their men are shirking a command responsibility.
-- February 1955 Combat Forces Journal


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Re: Welcome, journalists, to Milnet.ca!
« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2011, 14:09:36 »
Something else I forgot to mention in our original post for journalists to keep in mind:
  • Also, don't be shy about explaining your process here.  Part of the Canadian Association of Journalists' "Principles of Ethical Journalism" includes "We will answer to the public for our reporting and conduct".  Milnet.ca and other public forums are an ideal place for you to educate us about how you do your job, and why you and others make the choices you make.  In exchange, our membership can help educate you about how the military works.
“Most great military blunders stem from the good intentions of some high-ranking buffoon ...” – George MacDonald Fraser, "The Sheik and the Dustbin"

The words I share here are my own, not those of anyone else or anybody I may be affiliated with.

Tony Prudori
MILNEWS.ca - Twitter