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Kelly Dyer Fry, Editor of The Oklahoman, speaks at luncheon forum

Wonder what role the news media serves?

The press shines the light on injustice, among other things, Kelly Dyer Fry, Editor of The Oklahoman, said at an interfaith luncheon Tuesday, Oct. 28, at the Turkish Raindrop House, 4444 N Classen.

Fry made her presentation “Newspapers and Freedom of the Press” at a luncheon forum hosted by the Oklahoma City affiliate of the Dialogue Institute of the Southwest (formerly the Institute for Interfaith Dialogue).

Fry’s presentation included vintage video footage of well-known incidents of injustices, such as police brutalizing nonviolent Civil Rights marchers during the 1960s and the 1989 Tienanmen Square massacre in Beijing, China.

In addition to the video, Fry pointed to a domestic violence story series featured in the Sunday Oklahoman to show that injustice here in the state also is being highlighted by the newspaper.

Fry said the newspaper is not serving citizens well if such uncomfortable subjects are not brought to the forefront, often via the front page.

“We think things get better when people talk about them,” she said.

Fry explained to the audience that times have changed significantly since she attended college. She said, for starters, there was no computer laptop, no Internet (and obviously no Google), tablet or cell phone for journalists like her to use.

Technological advances have made those tools available and that’s a good thing, Fry said.

“There has never been a better time to be a journalist than right now. We have more tools at our disposal than we ever had. We’re reaching more people than we ever have before,” she said, speaking specifically about The Oklahoma Publishing Company.

Fry said new technology has caused newspaper journalists and executives to rethink the newspaper model.

She said The Oklahoman is marketed as a product but it really is a service. She said The Oklahoman’s journalists are having to disseminate information in different ways because things are changing, but they are doing just that.

“We are looking at the new ways to report the news.”

Ersin Demirci, Oklahoma City executive director of the Dialogue Institute of the Southwest, said Fry’s topic is important to his organization.

“The freedom of the press and freedom of speech is one of our founding values” and core tenets of a working democracy, he said.

Interested in attending future lunch forums?

For more information, go to Dialogue Institute.

 

(PHOTO CAPTION: Bob Nelon, at left, talks to Kelly Dyer Fry, Editor of The Oklahoman, at far right, as Ann Felton Gilliland looks on after Fry’s presentation “Newspapers and Freedom of the Press” Tuesday, Oct. 28, at the Turkish Raindrop House, 4444 N Classen. Photo by Carla Hinton, The Oklahoman)

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Carla Hinton

Carla Hinton, an Oklahoma City native, joined The Oklahoman in 1986 as a National Society of Newspaper Editors minority intern. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide... Read more ›

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