ABC's Peter Jennings writes better than Tom Brokaw and Dan Rather, according to a study by journalism professors from USC, Indiana University and the University of Maryland. The professors, reporting their findings in the July/August Washington Journalism Review, examined scripts from newscasts aired in 1987. Jennings came up on top in two of the university surveys for his "clear, concise and conversational" style, while NBC's Brokaw came in second for his snappy writing. "Cute-but-convoluted" phrasing knocked CBS's Rather to last in two of the university reports. "We called the networks to see how much of the writing the anchors really do. It seems at NBC, Brokaw writes 'at least half' and at ABC and CBS, the anchors write half to three-fourths of the copy," says Clint O'Connor, WJR managing editor.
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