Do you think people have different expectations about when and how they get their news now?
The news cycle is really different. When i started out, we had the evening newscast at 6:30, and people were working all day to get ready for that. Now the news changes every hour or two, and people expect to get that news quickly, in part because of what CNN did in 1980, which was to go on the air 24 hours a day.
So CNN's 24-hour-a-day presence has itself changed people's expectations?
People expect their news right away now, when before they'd just wait until dinner time. we've spoiled them because we've been delivering news to them that way, immediately.
How has technology changed your job?
The internet has made our jobs easier. As a reporter you can get transcripts, research, background materials. Information that in the old days it might take a week to get, you can now get in a couple of hours. But it's still old-fashioned facts that matter. The procedure is the same: you dig, you get information, you give the aggrieved person an opportunity to respond. You may want to goon the air quickly with something, but you have to make sure you're right.
How do you see that changing in the future?
There will be more competition, which is good, because it makes us better. In the end, we’ll be more thorough. Good, solid journalism always prevails.
With all the media-related scandals we’ve seen over the last couple of years, how can journalists like yourself keep people’s trust?
I think we just have to do it better. If you have a sensitive or explosive story, you don’t air it unless you really have it, or the consumers will lose confidence. are we a perfect profession? No. Journalists are human. They make mistakes. but I like to say that journalism is the first draft of history. The first draft. if you make a mistake, you have to acknowledge it, you have to fix it, you have to get an explanation on the air as quickly as possible. As long as we’re fair, as long as we’re thorough, people will trust us.
Watch Wolf Blitzer on news from CNN at noon weekdays, as anchor of Wolf Blitzer Reports at 5 p.m. weekdays, and on Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer at noon on Sundays (all times eastern).