Journalism Today

Journalism Today

Photo credit: Derek Parks

“The tools are different, but what you are supposed to do being as a reporter is always the same,” said Gabriele Cavalera at a private party at the home of Luca Gori, Press Counselor of The Embassy of Italy, preceding the Urbino Award ceremony celebrating recipient Maria Bartiromo. He was, of course, referring to the status of journalism today and the ramifications of social media.

“You’re supposed to tell the truth, you’re supposed to check your sources, you’re supposed to tell stories, you’re supposed to find out what’s going on in the world in different fields. The skills are always the same. The ethics should be always the same,” the President of the Urbino International Centre emphasized.

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 Luca Gori (in background), H.E.Claudio Bisogniero, The Ambassador of Italy with Gabriele Cavalera

So is real journalism dead Hollywood on the Potomac asked in a one on one interview with Cavalera,  “I don’t think so,” he said.  “I don’t think so. You can have new tools like digital media or different systems to communicate, but there is a difference between a blogger who can write anything they want and a reporter, a journalist. You are supposed to verify any story and be able to bring out the real story about a certain topic, which is what a journalist does.”

Enter Maria Bartiromo, the charismatic and forceful journalist and television host of Fox Business Network and winner of the 2014 Urbino Press Award.  A star among financial reporters, Bartiromo has worked for the Fox Business Network as a Global Markets Editor and host of “Opening Bell with Maria Bartiromo,” since January 2014. Her weekend show “Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo” was launched in March on Fox News Channel (FNC).  Her career has run the gamut of successful programming:  In the eighties at CNN,  then to CNBC in 1993, becoming the first reporter to broadcast live from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. She is the author of three publications on financial markets and Wall Street.

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Maria Bartiromo and Amb. Claudio Bisogniero

Ambassador Bisogniero delivered the official announcement on April 15 th at an event organized at the Embassy in Washington.

“It is an honor to announce that the winner of the ninth edition is a professional such as Maria Bartiromo,” he said.  “The unmistakable style and exceptional professionalism that she has brought onto the screens of millions of viewers around the world are synonymous with high-quality American and international financial and economic journalism.  The Urbino Press Award has become a hallmark moment in Washington’s journalistic and diplomatic tradition.  This evening we are adding one more name to this exclusive roster. Bartiromo was one of the first journalist to make reporting on the complexities of finance both thorough and understandable.”

“Maria Bartiromo,” said designer and co-founder of the award Giacomo Guidi, “is one of the big names in U.S. journalism. With television broadcasts from Wall Street, opinion articles in newspapers and magazines, and also as author of books, Bartiromo has effectively been able to explain to the public the complicated world of finance. In recent years we have all realized how our daily lives, regardless of which part of the world we live in, are strongly influenced by the dynamics of the economy. We are proud to have her as the 2014 Urbino Press Award winner.”

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Gabriele Cavalera and Claudio Bisogniero

Calavera explained the award to us. “The Urbino Press Award for 2014 reached the 9th addition,” he noted.  “Everything started as a project in 2005 when Giovanni Lani and Giacomo Guidi, the two founders of the award, came out with this proposal recognizing the American press as the witness of the modern world, bringing back the tradition that comes from Renaissance during the 1400’s.

The philosophers, intellectuals, the mathematicians, the artists, who could talk to the court gave their own vision about the world. Bringing back that old tradition from over 500 years ago, Urbino becomes for one day the center of the world where people gather and experience listening to a person who has a particular experience from journalism. The Urbino Press Award is actually is a cultural event. We present a city, Urbino, and one entire region, the Marche region, which is in the center of Italy and a place that represents the tradition of those days.”

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Nowadays, we try the ‘philosophers’ or those who can talk about the situation or the genre. This is how everything started. Year by year, we have pointed out different genres from different media according to the different possibilities and tendencies of the new technology or traditional media, like newspapers and movies, TV, or Internet so that we can have a vision about what are the different issues around the world year by year and have high quality journalists give us their vision of what the world was experiencing. “

It all began in 2006 with Diane Rehm and the award has covered radio stations, newspapers, and television. Year by year, they have the most distinguished journalists from the American media who first participate in  the ceremony in Washington D.C., where  every year The Ambassador of Italy announces officially who’s the winner of that specific year and then, during the month of June, the winner goes to Italy, to Urbino, in the Ducal Palace with this big ceremony where they give a lecture. “This is how the format works, and this is how it developed.,” he added. Previous winners have included Michael Weisskopf, Martha Raddatz, Thomas Friedman, David Ignatius, Helene Cooper, Sebastian Rotella and Wolf Blitzer.  So listen up you bloggers, follow the rules of traditional journalism and the Urbino award could be yours.

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Lynn Blitzer, Giovanni Lani and Wolf Blitzer

“Everything started in 2005,” reiterated Urbino award co-founder Giovanni Lani, “with my friend the fashion designer Giacomo Guidi.  We were discussing creating something new between Italy and the USA.

During the Renaissance, when the young painter Raphael was a child, the Ducal Palace of Urbino was where the Dukes used to call in all the most important people from Europe and from western civilization, creating something new from the vision of art, politics, mathematics and science – everything. The Renaissance really started there.  If you read the famous book Civilisation by Lord Kenneth Clark, you can read how this was possible for about 40 years.

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Amb. Bisogniero with Giovanni Lani and Gabriele Cavalera

In this century, what can we do?  I am a journalist because I work for the Italian newspaper Il Resto del Carlino and my friend Giacomo loves to read newspapers. We decided to call our Ducal Palace the best American journalist, then ask him to make a speech like in the Age of Dukes and to explain how his work is changing and finding a vision about the future.

From nine years from that moment. the best American journalists are very happy to explain their vision because they are not in front of readers; they are in front of something called the Renaissance because we have people accustomed to that and they have the opportunity to explain their vision of journalism.  Some people say that journalism is dead; other journalists say journalism will never die because we need something to explain things. From the first moment we were considered a part of the official relations between Italy and the USA. This explains why every year we ask The Ambassador of Italy to announce the winner at the Embassy of Italy.

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Laura Denise Bisogniero and Giovanni Lani

What we do to hope to obtain? Probably in the past century finding new ways of watching the things from other sides, we needed philosophers, writers, poets, visions and artists. We reproduced a lot, of course, I remember Raphael.  Now I think the journalists are the most important people to do this work because they are in the front line.  They have a method of understanding things.  They generally decide when something is true or not because they are informed.  They know because they search and the searching is the most important thing to do because by doing so you become better and better. When you do this work in the place where Renaissance started, really started, probably we have a rare opportunity to make another step for the future.

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Laura Denise Bisogniero, Maria Bartiromo and Amb. Claudio Bisogniero

“I feel very fortunate to have been able to have a front seat to the global economy over the last 25 years, to have watched the changes in markets and economies,” said Bartiromo.  “to have watched first hand how we are truly all connected, in the bad times and in the good times.  To be recognized by my friends in Italy and in the Italian-America community, I think I have arrived.  Every success that I’ve been able to achieve is a direct result of my family upbringing, with Italian-American parents and grandparents, the Urbino Press Award clearly reflects the deep friendship  – past, present and future – bonding Italy and The United States.”

Missed the event?  Head over to the City of Urbino in June, located in the Marche region that gave life to one of the most enlightened courts of Europe during the Renaissance and radiated with the brilliance of geniuses like Baldassarre Catiglione and Torquat Tasso.