On Morning Edition Renee Montagne speaks to Frank Ahrens of The Washington Post about the stupid celebrity gossip site TMZ which is setting up an outlet in Washington, D.C. Ahrens says, "It’s the hottest news gathering site in terms of growth...." Montagne at least has the sense to raise a weak challenge to this statement, responding, "And you call it a news gathering site, I mean I think of it as a gossip gathering site..."
That's the high point of the interview. Ahrens forges ahead, "Let’s think about the definition of news...an event happens and somebody sees it, reports it, and publishes it...in many ways it’s kind of shoe leather journalism."
Shoe leather journalism! Does Montagne protest? Not a peep. On the contrary, as Ahrens tells Montagne that TMZ loves "vacation photos of, you know, celebrities in the Caribbean who are wearing swim suits and they shouldn’t" Montagne joins right in, aiming for the lowest common denominator, "yeah that’s a little scary," she says, "the thought of some of our folks on the Hill in a swimsuit..."