When I was still a scribbler at The Canadian Press, a wise senior supervisor gave me a very good piece of advice when it came to outside work: Don't do anything you don't want to see on the front page of the Globe and Mail.
I'd been offered a chance to write some material for a business group, nothing provocative or related to the things I covered as a reporter. My name would not appear on what would essentially be limited-circulation brochures or pamphlets.
But my boss's injunction forced me to gut-check the offer. Even if it had only a peripheral connection with my work as a journalist, it would still present at least the appearance of a conflict of interest. I couldn't accept that.
Which brings me to Peter Manbridge. Critics are pillorying the chief correspondent and anchor of CBC News' The National over his paid speaking engagements before energy-industry audiences.
The flap blew up following a tweet by environmentalist Sierra Rayne a few days ago.Read More »from First Murphy, now Mansbridge: CBC personalities under fire for oil industry connections