Ombudsman columns

Stars and Stripes Ombudsman

For Stripes, making news makes a difference

Just about every mainstream news organization includes some coverage of military interest. But only a relative few produce substantive original military journalism themselves. Doing so is one of Stars and Stripes’ unique market advantages.

Thoughts on the evolution of story comments

News outlets have long wrestled with the challenges of maintaining a vibrant and civil comments section. Vibrant isn’t the hard part — it’s keeping debate civil that’s difficult. It’s usually a losing battle.


Manning and Cartwright: Pardoning a leak, forgiving a lie

Although Pfc. Chelsea Manning’s commuted sentence sucked up most of the press attention, the fact Obama had also commuted the sentence of a man who was once the second-highest-ranking officer in the military went virtually unnoticed.


Truth, lies and media in the age of President Trump

Donald Trump often seems to be at war with the media. It’s a struggle for primacy over who gets to declare truths, what defines accuracy and how the national narrative unfolds. The weapons are words, the battlefield Twitter, press conferences and interviews. And just as in a land war, the consequences threaten to spill over into the wider neighborhood.


7 steps to become a more discerning news reader

The internet democratized media, making it easier for new publishers to get into the business and harder for traditional media to ply their trade. In the process, it’s also made it exceptionally easy to make stuff up and get away with it.