Wednesday, September 08, 2004
Whiny reporters: According to Editor & Publisher a grand total of nine reporters were arrested and held for varying periods of time during last week's Republican National Convention. The reporters held for the longest period of time were not credentialed and weren't from major, mainstream publications.
The kicker to this whole story, however is the complaint that somehow the GOP and New York City police were more anti-press than the Democrats.
Although that may be considered low, since nearly 2,000 protesters were arrested during the week, RCFP leaders contend it is significant, since a similar hotline set up for the Democratic National Convention in Boston prompted no calls. Reporters Committee leaders also received a number of complaints from journalists about being hassled over credentials, especially if they lacked New York City press passes.
"Despite assurances from New York City police that arrests of journalists would be minimized, numerous credentialed and uncredentialed journalists were detained during the Republican National Convention," the Reporters Committee said in a statement. "Some for extended periods of time."
All of this ignores the inconvenient fact that more reporters may have been caught up in the police nets because the protesters they were covering weren't confined to a cage.