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Katie Couric: Tech Companies ‘Do Not Care About Stories’ And The Journalism Industry

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Eric Lieberman Managing Editor
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Katie Couric, the highly influential journalist and television anchor, is yet another person to speak out against the tech industry for not caring about its potentially adverse effect on her industry.

“These tech companies are not media companies. They do not care about stories, about content, about true connection,” Couric told Recode founder Kara Swisher during a podcast published Wednesday. “I think they care about widgets and gadgets and delivery systems, but they aren’t super-interested in the vegetable soup that’s running through the pipes.”

Couric suggested that in order to remediate such a problem, a company needs to truly value good writing and what it can do.

“I think the secret sauce is people who are technologically savvy, but also respect and care about storytelling,” Couric continued. “The company that combines those two things is gonna win the day. I haven’t really found it yet.”

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Couric’s statements pile on other ones made by other significant public figures and people with insider information on the tech industry — more aptly, Facebook and Google, who are the primarily blamed culprits.

Former President Barack Obama very recently joined the critical chorus, arguing that such companies can be a “hugely powerful potential force for good,” but also tools for Neo-Nazis and the Islamic State, according to Reason.

Both CNN President Jeff Zucker and News Corp (Fox) Executive Chairman Rupert Murdoch somewhat recently said that Facebook and Google aren’t acting fairly because it reaps the vast majority of the benefits of good journalism, and does very little to contribute.

Several former Facebook higher-ups, including founding President Sean Parker, have come out against the company, essentially acting as whistleblowers, or “conscientious objectors.”

Tina Brown, a magazine mogul who worked at Vanity Fair and The New Yorker, said something very similar while expressing her irritation and disappointment with the digital media ad revenue duopoly.

Along with Silicon Valley, Couric also criticized Yahoo, her most recent former employer, for the most part not caring about good storytelling.

“I wouldn’t say it was an unhappy marriage, but it certainly was not fulfilling for me,” she said in the Recode interview. “I had all this great content, I was getting big interviews, and it was sort of like a tree falling in the forest.”

Facebook and Google did not respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for a response to Couric’s comments.

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