ROUNDUP: Journalists watching FSU privatizing athletic department

Photo above: Florida State University’s FSView and Florida Flambeau staff is questioning the possibility of the university’s athletic department becoming privatized. Photo by Zach Bethel.

Staff Reports | SizingUpTheSouth.com

SKIRTING PUBLIC RECORD LAWS? The privatization of Florida State University’s athletics department has caught student journalists off guard, the Student Press Law Center reports.

Privatization would shield athletics officials from public records laws that cover internal financial documents, emails, and text messages. 

Editors at the school’s newspaper, FSView and Florida Flambeau, are considering their next move, the report said.

HOW TO BREAK NEWS: The Radio Television Digital News Association website, RTDNA.org, featured Houston TV station KHOU in a July 29 article about the station’s coverage of tragedies. The Texas station won a national Murrow Award for its May 2018 coverage of the Santa Fe High School Shooting, while its news team worked from a temporary studio after Hurricane Harvey destroyed the station building in 2017.

BE THOROUGH: Poynter.org featured a how-to-do-it feature July 31 about a North Carolina newsroom that took a year to investigate and report a public official’s conflicts of interest.

The News & Observer in Raleigh, North Carolina investigated the director of the University of North Carolina’s Development Finance Initiative and discovered his conflicts benefited his private business.

LONG-IGNORED EVILS BROUGHT TO LIGHT: Jerry Mitchell, founder of the Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting, has a new book coming out in early 2020.

Simon & Schuster will release “Race Against Time: A Reporter Reopens the Unsolved Murder Cases of the Civil Rights Era” in February 2020.

Mitchell, who is a 2009 MacArthur Foundation Genius Grant winner, worked at The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi before founding his own nonprofit, Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting, in 2018.