Salon’s groundbreaking stories on the Starr investigation challenge the Beltway media’s conventional wisdom
This article appeared in the June 1998 issue of The American Journalism Review as a sidebar to Salon: The best zine on the Net?
For years, the mainstream media have taken shots at the Internet for allowing anyone to spread rumors, lies and conspiracy theories to a global audience of millions. But now the flip side of that equation is beginning to emerge: The Net is becoming an alternative channel for original, honest investigative journalism shut out of the mainstream press.
Salon’s coverage of the Clinton-Lewinsky matter — its first sustained foray into classic investigative journalism — has served as a counterweight to the mainstream news media’s wolfpack mindset. That contrarian approach earned it a swipe by Chris Bury of ABC’s “Nightline,” who suggested on the air in late February that Salon’s findings, which poke holes in the accounts of many of President Clinton’s accusers, were part of a “White House public relations” strategy.