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Truth in Our Times

Inside the Fight for Press Freedom in the Age of Alternative Facts
Length: 10 hrs and 2 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (44 ratings)

Regular price: $31.49

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Publisher's Summary

This program includes an introduction read by the author.

David E. McCraw recounts his experiences as the top newsroom lawyer for The New York Times during the most turbulent era for journalism in generations.

In October 2016, when Donald Trump's lawyer demanded that The New York Times retract an article focused on two women who accused Trump of touching them inappropriately, David McCraw's scathing letter of refusal went viral, and he became a hero of press freedom everywhere. But as you'll see in Truth in Our Times, for the top newsroom lawyer at the paper of record, it was just another day at the office. 

McCraw has worked at the Times since 2002, leading the paper's fight for freedom of information, defending it against libel suits, and providing legal counsel to the reporters breaking the biggest stories of the year. In short: If you've read a controversial story in the paper since the Bush administration, it went across his desk first. From Chelsea Manning's leaks to Trump's tax returns, McCraw is at the center of the paper's decisions about what news is fit to print. 

In Truth in Our Times, McCraw recounts the hard legal decisions behind the most impactful stories of the last decade with candor and style. The audiobook is simultaneously a rare peek behind the curtain of the celebrated organization, a love letter to freedom of the press, and a decisive rebuttal of Trump's fake-news slur through a series of hard cases. It is an absolute must-have for any dedicated fan of The New York Times

“[Truth in Our Times] is spirited and hopeful and even, at times, lighthearted. It is, in a way, a love letter to the First Amendment." (The New York Times Book Review)

©2019 David E. McCraw (P)2019 Macmillan Audio

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A book to share

I'm a retired attorney (among other things) and this book explains why freedom of the press is so critical to a free society. Yes, it deals with the most repressive presidents of modern times and how his demagoguery of the press is a problem, but it also deals with the dangers to reporters and news organizations around the world. It points out that if we don't take steps to ensure freedom of the press in this nation, as enshrined in the First Amendment, we're in danger of ending up like other authoritarian nations, such as China.

I'm so impressed I've given copies to friends. That's not something I normally do.

A non-attorney can easily digest the material. That's a plus. And for those of us who have been in the field, there are parts of legal snark (documents that assume everyone reading them has just arrived from Mars) that set me to laughing. If you've never read a legal document that starts from prior to the creation of the universe in order to make sure everyone is on the same page (informationally) you might not appreciate what the legal writer goes through.

If you are interested in freedom, this is an important book to read. Give a copy to a friend.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

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Wonderful story from the NYT's attorney

I was a journalism undergrad before going to law school, and I'm also a long time subscriber to the Times, so it's a pleasure to listen to this book. Funny at times, serious the rest, it's a story of truth speaking to power, as told by someone who is certain down to his bones that the First Amendment will protect his client, even when its staff go way out on a limb. Great story!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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What it takes to bring us the "accurate" news.

Hello Everyone: Decided to re-write my review here. Simpler summary.... Needed to listen to this book in 30-60 minute intervals in-order to get through it. Best way to describe; the book is a tremendous insight into the daily land-mines that a major sized news organization, (could be the largest, I do not know), encounters. The legal wrangling and posturing is mind-boggling. One needs to be good at what they do here. Many thanks to all the legal folks that assist in keeping this news org. afloat. {Cannot make too many errors. Need to get your story right the first time and stay with it}. Thanks for reading.