David Folkenflik

Geraldo Rivera of Fox News has described NPR's David Folkenflik as "a really weak-kneed, backstabbing, sweaty-palmed reporter." Others have been kinder. The Columbia Journalism Review, for example, once gave him a "laurel" for reporting that immediately led the U.S. military to institute safety measures for journalists in Baghdad.

Based in New York City, Folkenflik is the media correspondent for NPR News. His stories and analyses are broadcast on the network's newsmagazines, such as All Things Considered, Morning Edition, and Here & Now, and are featured on NPR's website and mobile platforms. Folkenflik's reports cast light on the stories of our age, the figures who shape journalism and the tectonic shifts affecting the news industry. He profiled the Las Vegas columnist who went bankrupt fending off a libel lawsuit from his newspaper's new owner; conducted the first interview with New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet after his appointment; and chronicled how the demands of technology have forced the press corps to change how it covers presidential primaries.

Folkenflik is the author of Murdoch's World: The Last of the Old Media Empires. The Los Angeles Times called Murdoch's World "meaty reading... laced with delicious anecdotes" and the Huffington Post described it as "the gift that keeps on giving." Folkenflik is also editor of Page One: Inside the New York Times and the Future of Journalism. His work has appeared in such publications as the Washington Post, Politico Magazine, Newsweek International, the National Post of Canada, and the Australian Financial Review. Business Insider has called Folkenflik one of the 50 most influential people in American media.

Folkenflik joined NPR in 2004 after more than a decade at the Baltimore Sun, where he covered higher education, national politics, and the media. He started his professional career at the Durham (N.C.) Herald-Sun. Folkenflik served as editor-in-chief at the Cornell Daily Sun and graduated from Cornell with a bachelor's degree in history.

A four-time winner of the Arthur Rowse Award for Press Criticism from the National Press Club, Folkenflik has received numerous other recognitions, including the inaugural 2002 Mongerson Award for Investigative Reporting on the News and top honors from the National Headliners Club and the Society of Professional Journalists. He was the first Irik Sevin Visiting Fellow at Cornell and speaks frequently across the country. He often appears as a media analyst for television and radio programs in the U.S., the U.K., Canada, Australia and Ireland. Folkenflik lives with his wife, who is the senior director for original content at Audible (wholly owned by Amazon), and children in New York City.

Even after he becomes president, Donald Trump will hold another title dear to his heart: executive producer. The next head of the U.S. government is to retain a stake and a credit for the NBC reality series Celebrity Apprentice, Trump spokeswoman Hope Hicks tells NPR. The story was first reported in the Hollywood trade publication Variety . "Mr. Trump has a big stake in the show and conceived of it with Mark Burnett," Hicks told NPR. The show, for which Trump served as host and an executive...

Alex Jones has a following. His radio show is carried on more than 160 stations, and he has more than 1.8 million subscribers on YouTube. And he claims to have the ear of the next president of the United States. Jones is also one of the nation's leading promoters of conspiracy theories — some of which take on lives of their own. He has been a chief propagator of untrue and wild claims about a satanic sex trafficking ring run by one of Hillary Clinton's top advisers out of a pizzeria in...

Donald Trump is meeting with The New York Times after all, despite announcing by Tweet early Tuesday morning that he was canceling sessions with the paper's executives and journalists. It continued a whirlwind 24 hours of Trump's mixed messages to the media. The president-elect kicked it off Monday with a session in which he had invited television news anchors and executives to establish a new working relationship, only to berate them for what he termed unfair campaign coverage. He then told...

Updated 12:01 p.m. ET Tuesday, with additional details. President-elect Donald Trump invited a large group of television news anchors and executives from the nation's leading networks on Monday to reset a relationship that had badly frayed during a contentious campaign. First, Trump gave them a piece of his mind. He castigated the networks for what he said was unfair coverage. Trump, top aides and advisers including Kellyanne Conway, Reince Priebus and Sean Spicer met with executives and...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST: Here's a headline for you - "Pope Francis Shocks The World, Endorses Donald Trump." That was the most shared story on Facebook during this election season according to a BuzzFeed investigation. Just one problem, it's completely fake, made-up, not true. And fake election stories like that were all over the internet. That's led to a lot of soul-searching for internet giants like Facebook. On Friday, Facebook CEO...

Steve Bannon, the newly named chief strategist for the nascent Trump White House, boasts a resume packed with a series of seeming non sequiturs. He had a stint in the U.S. Navy, worked for a stretch at Goldman Sachs, became a Hollywood investor who made a fortune off Seinfeld reruns, and ran the secretive experimental community Biosphere 2 outside Tucson, Ariz. Then there's the line on the resume drawing all the controversy: Bannon's time as executive chairman of Breitbart, turning the right...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: Donald Trump has richly rewarded his campaign's CEO, Steve Bannon, with an appointment as chief White House strategist. That appointment has inspired a firestorm. Bannon's critics say his right-wing news site, Breitbart, spreads hate and bigotry, as NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik reports. And just a note - this story has language that some listeners might find offensive. DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE: Steve...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: When Donald Trump went to the White House today, his staff and his wife joined him. The press corps covering him did not. This is just one of the many ways that Donald Trump has broken the norms of how a candidate and now a president-elect deals with the media. During the campaign, Trump described journalists as dishonest, disgusting and corrupt. He threatened to take newspapers to court and to change libel laws to...

Donald Trump's election early Wednesday as president — utterly unprecedented, utterly unexpected — caught the media flat-footed. The distance between the nation's political press corps and its people has never seemed so stark. The pundits swung and missed. The polls failed. The predictive surveys of polls, the Upshots and FiveThirtyEights, et al. with their percentage certainties, jerked violently in the precise opposite direction of their predictions as election night progressed. And now...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. DAVID GREENE, HOST: And it is hard to remember a relationship with the media as strained as the one Donald Trump had during the course of this campaign, and now Donald Trump will be president of the United States. Let's talk about the relationship we expect him to have with the media going forward. NPR's media correspondent David Folkenflik is on the line. David, good morning. DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE: Good morning, David. GREENE:...

From pretty much the very start of this election season, Donald Trump grabbed the media by the press pass. He didn't even wait. As Trump, a former reality show host, once said in a slightly different context , "When you're a star, they let you do it." This week, a wave of assessments of the media's performance during this presidential race has encouraged reporters and news outlets to take a bow, like award winners on Graduation Day. There's been a fair amount to admire — but I think many...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. MICHEL MARTIN, HOST: The scrutiny of Hillary Clinton and her emails in the final days of the presidential campaign led to a remarkable report and retraction this week by a Fox News anchor. Fox News' Bret Baier apologized this week for a report in which he said, without foundation, that an indictment of Hillary Clinton was likely to result from the FBI's investigation of the Clinton Foundation. But the claim continues to reverberate...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: A federal jury has found Rolling Stone magazine liable of defamation. This in connection with a story it ran about a gang rape at the University of Virginia in 2014. That rape never took place. The jury's verdict also faults the reporter and the magazine's parent company. NPR's David Folkenflik has been covering this story from the beginning and joins us now. Hi, David. DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE: Hey, Ari. SHAPIRO:...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: CNN has won tremendous ratings in the run-up to the presidential election, but it's also run into a problem with some of its pundits in the process. The network just cut ties with some of its most prominent pundits, the acting head of the DNC, Donna Brazile. Hacked emails posted to WikiLeaks show Brazile shared questions for CNN debates in advance with Hillary's campaign. That shows to NPR media correspondent...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: CNN says Donna Brazile, the chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, will no longer be a political commentator for the network. This comes after WikiLeaks posted more emails hacked from a top Hillary Clinton aide. This batch shows Brazile gave the Clinton campaign advance warning of questions the candidate might be asked at CNN events. This is not the only embarrassment for the media to come out of the...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Boy, that escalated quickly. Tuesday night's intense eight-minute exchange between Fox News host Megyn Kelly and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich demonstrated the current state of the election — and especially why Donald Trump appears to be shedding many voters, especially women. The subtext proved if anything more striking. The segment initially promised nothing more than chummy debate staged between colleagues for a cable audience. It quickly swerved into charged disputes over the media's...

AT&T's proposed $85.4 billion acquisition of Time Warner has cast renewed attention on the financial performance and journalistic independence of one of the media conglomerate's best-known possessions, CNN. "You have to allow the organization to run independently," AT&T Chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson tells NPR. "It's not an altruistic thing either. I mean, I personally think it's a smart business thing to do. If the customer ever believes that the news is being tainted by the opinion of...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. KELLY MCEVERS, HOST: As we heard, tonight's debate will be moderated by Chris Wallace of "Fox News," and it's the first time a Fox News journalist will moderate a general election presidential debate. That makes it a milestone and a point of pride for the network, but it came at a time when Fox is still dealing with the scandal surrounding its former chairman Roger Ailes. NPR's David Folkenflik reports. DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE:...

The whirling dervish that is Donald J. Trump spun ever-faster on Thursday, shredding almost everything in his range of vision — Hillary Clinton, his fellow Republicans who fail to support him unequivocally, the growing chorus of women accusing him of sexual misconduct, and especially the press. In just the past 24 hours, Trump threatened to sue The New York Times for recounting the stories of two accusers; he slammed the media for serving, in his telling, as a wing of Clinton's campaign; and...

It is one of the most recognizable shows on television — a mainstay for nearly a half-century, with a theme song promising, "Sunny day, sweepin' the clouds away." Yet dark financial clouds have hovered over Sesame Street's parent company in recent years. Sesame Workshop President and CEO Jeffrey Dunn took office little more than two years ago. In an expansive interview with NPR, Dunn sketched out his vision to ensure the show's survival and the nonprofit company's ability to adhere to its...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: Sesame Street made its debut in 1969, but its future has been in question. In recent years, its parent company has flirted with financial disaster. Jeffrey Dunn took over as CEO of Sesame Workshop two years ago. He spoke with NPR's David Folkenflik, for the first time spelling out his plans to ensure the show's survival. DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE: The mission remains. JEFFREY DUNN: Are we helping a kid, you know,...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: NBC News has indefinitely suspended Billy Bush, co-host of the "Today" show. The now infamous 11-year-old video released last week that revealed Bush engaging in coarse, degrading talk about women with Donald Trump, that's what it's all about. At the time, Bush was co-host of "Access Hollywood." (SOUNDBITE OF VIDEO) BILLY BUSH: Sheesh, your girl's hot as [expletive] - in the purple. DONALD TRUMP: Whoa. Whoa....

Early last month, New York Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet told a crowd at Harvard University that he would happily face time in jail to publish Donald Trump's long-withheld tax forms. Theoretically, Baquet just might have his chance. But almost certainly, only theoretically. The Times ' big-ticket story revealing Trump's nearly billion-dollar losses two decades ago relies on three documents from state tax forms sent anonymously to the newspaper less than two weeks after Baquet's remarks,...

For all the changes wrought by the sexual harassment scandal that brought down former Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes, the Murdoch family that controls the network has held one goal paramount: to maintain continuity. After a lawsuit filed by former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson unleashed a wave of allegations, Ailes and a coterie of his associates were purged and a new day declared. But with few exceptions, the senior executives who led Fox News remain in place, notably Ailes' former chief...

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Monday night's debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will be the first time the two square off directly during this general election campaign. At such moments, the stakes are invariably characterized as high for the candidates, their presidential prospects on the brink of success or ruin. Or maybe not. As the Dartmouth College political scientist Brendan Nyhan recently wrote in the Columbia Journalism Review , "political science research suggests that [debates] rarely cause a...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. DAVID GREENE, HOST: We're almost there. Monday is the first of four debates in this presidential election. A lot at stake for Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump and also for the moderators, who can become part of history. Like in 1984, it was Ronald Reagan and Walter Mondale. Moderator Henry Trewhitt of the Baltimore Sun tried to challenge President Reagan about his age. (SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING) HENRY TREWHITT: I recall, yet,...

It appears that as far as the news media is concerned, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump sees Democrats everywhere. Even when they're not. Take his friendly chat Monday night with Fox's Bill O'Reilly, who asked Trump about the scheduled moderators of his debates with Hillary Clinton. If you missed it, here's a portion of the transcript courtesy of The Washington Post when they talked about the journalists who will be asking the questions, including Lester Holt of NBC: "TRUMP: And...

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