‘Getting the news out first and then elaborating later’ was the focal point of The New York Times editor Sam Sifton’s lecture.
Sifton, the Times’ national editor, visited the University March 21 to discuss the process of managing and publishing all national content for The New York Times, particularly focusing on the upcoming presidential election.
He elaborated on the daily workings of a national publication that produces a newspaper daily and tweets frequently, emphasizing the importance of publishing the news as soon as possible.
“We have to break news fast – and we have to be analytic and we have to do it in a smaller and tighter and less hospitable environment. That is the major challenge,” Sifton said.
Over 50 students and faculty members of the FIU community attended the lecture last Wednesday at the Modesto Maidique Campus hosted by the Student Government Association, Academic Affairs, the Office of Global Learning and The New York Times.
One student in attendance asked about Sifton’s average working day.
“We have two main news meetings each day. One at 10 a.m. and another at 4 p.m. In the morning, we discuss what’s happening and what we plan on putting on the web,” Sifton said. “Then, in the afternoon, we present over 30 mocked up version of the stories that will be posted online and some that will be published in the next day’s issue.”
At the beginning of the lecture, he briefed his audience about his background in the food industry.
Sifton used to be a restaurant critic for the Times and joked about his past position versus his current position, “Says the guy who was the restaurant critic who is now talking about The New York Times and the elections,” said Sifton.
At a subsequent reception for students and faculty members, Sifton welcomed questions and discussed relevant political issues.
Sifton also lectured at the Biscayne Bay Campus with over 300 students in attendance on March 22.