It looks like the media are in for a tough challenge when it comes to covering the White House after Jan. 20th.
Unless we see some major changes, which are always possible when it comes to the president-to-be, information will come from the White House primarily by Twitter and possibly other forms of social media like YouTube.
It's good to get information out to the public directly, which the White House currently does via Twitter and Facebook. But if very few (or none at all) news conferences are given, then how will the media do their jobs -- which is not to simply parrot what's being handed out, but to ask questions and follow-ups?
That's the normal procedure ... the give and take of a news conference. The president or his press secretary may choose to avoid answering some questions, but at least they get raised and hopefully some actually get answered. It's not a game of gotcha or political partisanship -- it's merely the media trying to keep the public accurately informed.
But as we've been seeing, normal is no longer normal.
A story on Politico the other day advised journalists to keep asking questions and if news is generated via tweets, to incorporate unanswered questions into their news coverage. If wrong information is given in a presidential tweet, such as the recent assertion that much of the 2 million vote lead for Hillary came from illegal votes, the media will have to, even as they report on the tweet, include in their news stories that the initial statement or allegation is incorrect.
It will make for some challenging reporting and writing, but we must rely on the media to fact-check for us even as they report. And they may have to stand up to calls of media bias from some. But remember, it's not bias if it's truth.
We may be entering a new era of reality, and more than ever we will need the free press to keep that reality truthful.