It’s been an election for the history books. We know everyone can become heated in campaigning and relations can become strained, but despite known challenges, we must move forward with open minds and a renewed sense of purpose.
Now is the time for the press and President-elect to get back to a normal, transparent relationship. The world needs to know what is happening during these pivotal moments as Trump prepares to take office. It is beneficial for democracy and Trump to have a clear, respectful relationship with the media.
The press pool is a tried and true way of reporting important phone calls with world leaders, cataloging the President’s agenda and reporting on his preparations. As they get to know each other, I believe Trump will see that this group can be trusted and is a resource to him to communicate his activities to those reporting on these issues in the media.
The News Media Alliance looks forward to working with President-elect Trump and his administration to maintain our members’ rights to operate successful businesses that contribute to the economy. That starts with finally lifting the decades-old ban on media cross ownership. We also need to look at copyright laws and “fair use”. The news media industry simply isn’t permitted to fairly protect the value of what it creates. I recently wrote about how publishers are losing the rights to their content as the industry advances with digital platforms like Instant Articles and AMP. We must protect the industry’s rights to that content. Numerous interpretations of copyright laws mean that the industry is currently forced to give away much of its product for free. The government needs to put in place copyright protections that allow news organizations and other content creators to fairly benefit from their critical efforts and investments. And as Trump does not come from a political background, but is a seasoned businessman, we know he understands the importance of fair competition and protecting intellectual property.
Now that the election is over, we must look forward, together. It is time for the real work to begin, enabled by an open dialogue between the press and the Oval Office.
We hope to have the support of the new President as we continue to work on behalf of our members, and believe that the system of checks and balances, protected by a free press, will create a strong and representative democracy.
Michael is former Vice President of Innovation & Communications at the News Media Alliance.