David Folkenflik

Geraldo Rivera of the Fox News Channel once described David Folkenflik as "a really weak-kneed, backstabbing, sweaty-palmed reporter." Others have been kinder. The Columbia Journalism Review, for example, gave him a "laurel" for his reporting that immediately led the U.S. military to institute safety measures for journalists in Baghdad.

Folkenflik is NPR's media correspondent based in New York City. His stories are broadcast on NPR's newsmagazines and shows, including All Things Considered, Morning Edition and Talk of the Nation. His reports offer insight into the operation of the media amid tectonic shifts in the industry and cast light on figures who help shape the way the news business works. NPR's listeners were first to learn how the corporate owners of the glossy magazine GQ sought to smother distribution of its provocative story about Russian Premier Vladimir Putin. They also found out, amid the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic church, how a small, liberal Catholic weekly based in Kansas City had been documenting allegations of abuse by priests for a generation. Folkenflik provides media criticism on the air and at NPR.org on coverage of a broad array of issues — from the war in Afghanistan, to the financial crisis, to the saga of the "Balloon Boy."

Before joining NPR in 2004, Folkenflik spent more than a decade at the Baltimore Sun, where he covered higher education, Congress, and the media. He started his career at the Durham (N.C.) Herald-Sun. In 1991, Folkenflik graduted with a bachelor's degree in history from Cornell University, where he served as editor-in-chief of The Cornell Daily Sun.

A three-time winner of the Arthur Rowse Awards for Press Criticism from the National Press Club, Folkenflik won the inaugural 2002 Mongerson Award for Investigative Reporting on the News, presented by the Center for Media and Public Affairs and the University of Virginia's Center for Governmental Studies. Folkenflik's work has also been recognized with top honors from the National Headliners Club and the Society of Professional Journalists. He was the first Irik Sevin Visiting Fellow at Cornell and speaks frequently at colleges across the country. He has served as a media analyst on such television programs as CNN's Reliable Sources, ABC News' Nightline, Fox News' O'Reilly Factor, and MSNBC's Countdown with Keith Olbermann.

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Media
12:01 am
Wed July 20, 2011

Does British Scandal Risk Murdoch's Hold On Empire?

News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch (right), testifying alongside his son James, said his appearance Tuesday before a British parliamentary inquiry in London was "the most humble day of my life."
Parbul AFP/Getty Images

As News Corp. executives Rupert and James Murdoch gave testimony to members of a parliamentary panel in London on Tuesday, they were also speaking to a different audience: The people who own their company's shares and sit on its board.

From the opening moments, Rupert Murdoch made clear even in crisis that News Corp., while a publicly traded company, is very much propelled by the vision of one man. He interrupted his son James to make the point.

"I'd just like to say one sentence: This is the most humble day in my life," he said.

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Media
3:00 pm
Mon July 18, 2011

U.K. Hacking Scandal Exposes Media-Police Ties

Britain's phone-hacking scandal has put the spotlight on the relationship between News Corp. and the police. London's two top police officers have resigned amid the scandal.
Oli Scarff Getty Images

Two top British police officials have resigned amid the News Corp. hacking scandal, throwing the problematic relationship between the media giant and the police into sharp relief.

British Home Secretary Teresa May told Parliament on Monday that both Paul Stephenson, the Metropolitan Police commissioner, and Assistant Commissioner John Yates had resigned. The Metropolitan Police is commonly known as Scotland Yard.

A Two-Fold Scandal

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Media
8:00 am
Sat July 9, 2011

Rupert Murdoch Rules More Than The 'World'

The scandal that has collapsed the British tabloid, News of the World, and rocked the News Corp empire, brings into question the pervasive influence of Rupert Murdoch's media holdings on British media and politics. NPR's David Folkenflik examines the extent of Murdoch's influence and his cozy relationships with politicians.

Europe
4:18 pm
Fri July 8, 2011

Cameron Vows Full Probe Of Phone Hacking Scandal

Investigators carry bags of evidence from the home of Andy Coulson, a former News of the World editor and Cameron aide, in London on Friday. Police arrested Coulson in the phone hacking scandal.
Andrew Cowie AFP/Getty Images

British Prime Minister David Cameron has announced two investigations into the phone hacking scandal that brought down Rupert Murdoch's News of the World tabloid and led to the arrest Friday of the paper's former top editor, a former Cameron aide.

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Media
12:01 am
Fri July 1, 2011

New CNN News Chief Takes Stock

CNN is known for its coverage of breaking news, like the killing in May of Osama bin Laden.
Bay Ismoyo AFP/Getty Images

It's pretty easy to see the winning formula for Fox News and MSNBC. They spend their evening hours stoking outrage from the political right and left, respectively.

But it's not as clear what the missing secret sauce should be for CNN. The cable news pioneer now continually lags in ratings during prime time, the most heavily watched hours.

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