Take Back Your News – The book

Take Back Your News

By Stephen B. Waters


  • © 2018 by Stephen B. Waters, Rome, NY USA
  • Take Back Your News/ Stephen B. Waters
  • ISBN 978-0-9845258-3-6 (Paperback)
  • ISBN 978-0-9845258-4-3 (Hardcover)
  • ISBN 978-0-9845258-5-0 (EPub)
  • Library of Congress Control Number: 2018901883
  • Published by:
  • Stephen Waters
  • 6391 Karlen Rd.
  • Rome, NY 13440
  • www.exploringcharacter.com

All rights reserved. This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher except for the use of brief quotations in a book review or scholarly journal.

Any members of educational institutions wishing to photocopy part or all of the work for classroom use, or publishers who would like to obtain permission to include the work in an anthology, should send their inquiries the publisher.

File under non-fiction.



Great, great grandfather, Augustus C. Kessinger, started work at the Rome (NY) Sentinel in 1854 as a printer’s devil, breaking down pages to reclaim and re-case individual letters of type for use the next week. Type was expensive. You might say that words were valuable back then. Not so much anymore.

Our family still believes words matter. Since A.C., six generations of our family have held the newspaper in stewardship for our community.

This is dedicated to more than 150 years of staff who worked diligently to reflect community back to individuals who create it.

Together we have helped grow livelihood, quality of life, and a safe place for family and friends. Who could ask for more?


While a newspaper article about Donald Trump appears on the cover, this book is about the media, not Trump. We have replaced Trump’s picture that ran in the newspaper with a picture of the media that poorly reported Trump’s rally.

#FakeNews is a misplaced notion. #FakeJournalism is a more persistent problem.

Trump dared point out that poor national reporting worsens the political, economic, and social problems faced by our country. The media wrongly criticized him for that.

This book would be unnecessary if:

  • More journalists understood their craft,
  • More readers/viewers took responsibility for their news,
  • More people understood how to choose experts.
  • More teachers understood their obligation to students,
  • More public officials understood society,

Start the book anywhere. Journalism, schooling, and society all need your help. In Book 1, mine the evidence of poor journalistic practice gathered during the 2016 presidential campaign and judge its quality for yourself.

In Book 2 see how schools shortchange students so they seldom notice poor journalistic practice or government.

In Book 3 look at society and its principles, the better to sort through noise flung at us.

Some points repeat in the books because they were first written as standalone articles based on my 2010 book, Individuals, Journalism, and Society.

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