Journalism and Mass Communications, College of


Date of this Version

Spring 4-22-2011

Document Type



A Thesis Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Arts, Major: Journalism and Mass Communications, Under the Supervision of Professor Charlyne Berens. Lincoln, Nebraska: April 2011

Copyright 2011, Erich Eisenach


Anonymous sources for years have been a hard thing for editors to figure out. In journalism, they’re the kind of factor that editors can’t live with, and yet they can’t live without. That’s because for years, anonymous sources have been critical to the completion of many major stories. Some of the situations they are used in are obvious, and yet some are not so obvious. In the thesis below, which includes material from two of the most veteran journalists within Nebraska borders, I talk about anonymous sources and why they are used in certain situations. Here, I acknowledge the people who helped get me here – my own family, the members of my committee who helped me all along the way, and also the two journalists, Henry Cordes and Joe Duggan who granted me the interviews that were essential to this thesis.

Advisor: Charlyne Berens