How often does a great story dominate the headlines, only to be dropped from the news cycle? How often do journalists tell us of a looming danger or important discovery – only to move quickly to the next new thing? What really happened? How did these events change us? And what are the lingering consequences that may affect our society to this day? These are the questions we are answering at Retro Report, an innovative documentary news organization launched in 2013 as a timely online counterweight to today’s 24/7 news cycle. Combining documentary techniques with shoe-leather reporting, we peel back the layers of some of the most perplexing news stories of our past with the goal of encouraging the public to think more critically about current events and the media in ~10 minute segments. [more inside]
The National Journal opens up its doors to the public for two weeks every four years. Best known for its annual vote ratings (which declared John Kerry most liberal senator of 2003), there's also ads galore, snarky coverage of the media, and more polls than you can shake your fist at.
Will the web be the only place left to cover "unpopular" stories? Exhibit A: This WP article reporting that media consultants are recommending TV and radio not to cover protests. (It's unpopular, therefore decreases ratings and therefore bad for business). Exhibit B: Clear Channel tells their stations to ban the Dixie Chicks (Clear Channel wants to get in good with Bush). Exhibit C: Courts rules the media have no obligation to tell the truth. Will a distributed or topic-specific IndyMedia be the best or main source for deviant news? Something like the The Internet Topic Exchange or pb's recent peacetrack? Another reason to work on the Metafilter Online Journalism Project? [more inside]
Press sez "good", public sez "bad" I'm not posting this story to discuss Bush's EU tour (lord knows we've done that one to death), but rather to examine this line: "Mr. Bush's European tour, though it drew largely upbeat news coverage, did not appear to help him in the eyes of the public." I'm a pretty big believer that the media (oh, let's just go ahead and capitalize it: "The Media") plays a huge role is shaping public perceptions of politicians, and I too thought the coverage of Bush's EU trip was pretty positive -- certainly in comparison to the "he's gonna go over there and get suckerpunched" predictions they were running before his departure. And, still, his numbers go down. What do you think? How large an influence does The Media really have? Does the public just believe what Peter Jennings tells 'em, or is it possible that, *gasp*, they can think for themselves?