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Two Problems With the New York Times Facebook Live Pitch Meeting

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Brian Christy
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This afternoon, in a scene plucked from one of my work-related anxiety dreams, New York Times reporters Nick Corasaniti, Maggie Haberman, and Thomas Kaplan pitched stories to politics editor Carolyn Ryan on Facebook Live while thousands of people watched it happen.

This is all to say that streaming a pitch meeting on Facebook Live is a decently brave move, especially since half-baked story ideas that haven t been subject to fact-checking or strenuous research are a pillar of pitch meetings.

It s customary in pitch meetings for editors to ask follow-up questions of writers to suss out whether the stories they re pitching have legs, and we see that happen in this video.

About four minutes into the live stream, Haberman and Kaplan pitch a story about the possibility of a third-party candidate for president, Gary Johnson, and his likely VP choice, Bill Weld.

Ryan asks if that was on the record and Haberman says, yes, Not only on the record, but unsolicited.

And indeed, Haberman and Kaplan s article on Weld went live on the Times website basically around the time the live stream began.

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Brian Christy
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