Columbia Journalism Review is an influential magazine among professional journalists, so it’s not surprising that The Commonwealth Fund shelled out a lot of money to buy a "supplement" — with a rah-rah conclusion about the new federal healthcare law — for a recent issue of CJR. What’s problematic is the ambiguity for readers. Did the magazine have any editorial role? Was a big check the only standard that had to be met?
I raised such questions in a letter to the Columbia Journalism Review. My letter and a reply from the editors can be found in the current edition of the magazine.