Statement from the Energy Accountability Project
Journalism is important. It helps shape public opinion. And when the facts are wrong – and when needed context is missing – the public is not served.
The Energy Accountability Project provides factual information to the public and to the media covering stories concerning oil and natural gas. It’s a fact-check site, much like the media provides for politicians and others. Too often lately, we find reporters and elected leaders rely on activist studies, misrepresentations, and one-sided arguments for their coverage, and many times they are not responsive when we seek corrections or opportunities to tell our side of the story. That, obviously, is not true of all reporters. The website is nothing more than a place to provide facts and context often missing in today’s media coverage.
We were asked by 9News this week if the Colorado Oil & Gas Association was supporting this website, and we said yes. Whenever anyone asked, we said yes. We should have been forthcoming with that at the beginning. As Kyle Clark pointed out, it would have been better to follow the example of other industry journals and websites by listing our support.
I hold journalists and journalism in high regard. This is about setting the record straight. As a former journalist, I know many journalists want to get it right every time. And we need them to. We’re here to help give the public the facts on oil and gas development. Often, when the news on the front page misses a fact or unfairly characterizes an industry, a correction may appear in small print a few days later, deep inside the newspaper. Only a fraction of original readers may even notice it. In today’s world of social media, we can correct the record ourselves in real time. People deserve the truth.
We owe it to the public to be engaged in the battle of ideas. Please check this site regularly to see what media outlets may have missed so you can shape your own opinions. We’ll hold ourselves to the same standard. If you believe any of our fact checks miss the mark or are inaccurate, send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for being an engaged citizen and for giving us a chance to share in the discussion.
Dan Haley Colorado Oil & Gas Association