Ebola and the Construction of Fear
by Karen Sternheimer (Everyday Sociology)
"Sociologist Barry Glassner, author of The Culture of Fear: Why Americans are Afraid of the Wrong Things, explains how misguided panics are not just benign opportunities to prevent something horrible, but can divert attention and public funds away from more likely threats. He notes:
Panic-driven public spending generates over the long term a pathology akin to one found in drug addicts. The money and attention we fritter away on our compulsions, the less we have available for our real needs, which consequently grow larger (p. xvii).
was engaged in 1897 as the restaurant reviewer of the Pall Mall Gazette
, and his reviews of London restaurants are collected in Dinners and Diners: Where and How to Dine in London
, available online from The Dictionary of Victorian London
. Newnham-Davis was a bon vivant, amateur of the theatrical world, and man of parts, and his reviews were equal parts reminiscence of the conversation with his pseudonymous companions and recollections and reviews of his opulent and lengthy Victorian dinners. [more inside]
Building the future in the present
in Rio de Janeiro favelas, which are getting active online
Thanks to young community reporters
people in Rio and all over the world are getting a more accurate, clearer picture of what's happening in the city's favelas.
In 2011 Augusto Paim & MauMau published a two part comic Inside the Favelas
A couple of interviews
with 19 year old Michel Silva of the online
magazine Viva Rocinha
( and FB
Yes, we could more easily aim toward something considered more “objective” at this point, simply listing the facts as presented by the developer/publisher. But oh my goodness, what now? See – see where this notion of objectivity has so quickly taken us? Objectivity is now demanding that we parrot information given to us by the creator/publisher of the game, and not apply our own critical faculties – our own subjective expertise – to this.
-Some Subjective Thoughts On Objectivity [in Games Criticism]
...while [Time Inc.] claims that none of its titles lose money, it has seen earnings fall by nearly 65 percent since 2006. The number of advertising pages in the flagship Time has dwindled by 50 percent over the past five years. Even People is sputtering: Newsstand sales slid 12 percent last year, and the news budget has been cut in half. Layoffs have become an annual rite. In the past four years, Time Inc. has churned through three CEOs and endured nine months during which there was no single executive running the company.
New York Magazine on Time Inc.
, the split from Time Warner, native advertising and the company's attempts at digital media. [more inside]
So a little while ago, I set out to write some tutorials that would guide the non-coding-but-computer-savvy journalist through enough programming fundamentals so that he/she could write a web scraper to collect data from public websites. [more inside]
AdDetector is a browser extension that spots articles with corporate sponsors.
It puts a big banner on top of any article that may appear unbiased at first glance, but is actually paid for by an advertiser.
For example, it turns the small, light-grey-on-white "Sponsored" on this deadspin article
into a giant red banner.
"Native advertising" previously.
In their long and seemingly hopeless search for answers, journalists have internalized the abusive rhetoric of the “disruption” brigade. Jarvis tells beleaguered journalists that they themselves, the lowly content-serfs—not short-sighted newspaper proprietors, not the Wall Street backers of corporate media conglomerates, not the sociopathic unchecked tech monopolies, not hostile politicians and prosecutors—are to blame for their sudden loss of livelihood. Don’t blame remorseless corporate Vikings like Craig Newmark for killing the news business. Blame old-school reporters like Dana Priest for failing to cultivate their Facebook fanbases.
The Baffler puts the boot into cyberjournalist hustler Jeff Jarvis
As part of their State of Sex
issue, Dazed and Confused magazine presents an oral history
of the trans magazine Original Plumbing
]. Amos Mac, co-founder and editor, asks five people in NYC who identify on the trans spectrum what being "trans in America" at this moment in time means to them
. Dating columnist
Arisce Wanzer discusses the challenges of dating as a transwoman of color
(nsfw). Legendary NYC drag den mother Flawless Sabrina talks the ethics of identity politics and her mentorship of gay and transgender youth
. [more inside]
Today, The New Yorker
announces a redesign, temporary free access to their archives for all web visitors, and a soon-to-be implemented paywall
, modelled on that of The New York Times
The New Yorker website--which now publishes 15 original stories a day--has been steadily expanding their offerings (and increasing their traffic) under online editor Nicholas Thompson. Perhaps TNY seeks to finally answer the question: what's an old magazine to do on the internet? Capital NY digs into the history of the relaunch
and how striving for timeliness on the web may affect the publication.
that a remaining problem is Andy Borowitz
, whose vague satire accounted for 6% of traffic to the website last year.
] has been called "This Latin American Life". It is long-form non-breaking-news documentary journalism from across Latin America. It was recently featured
in an episode of On The Media which looked at Latino and Hispanic media in the US
. While the majority of its content is in Spanish, they do have some stories en Inglés
“Would I want to read the young García Márquez’s journalism if it didn’t happen to be written by García Márquez?”
I asked myself while speedwalking toward Bocars Libros in the Barracas neighborhood of Buenos Aires, and again while shelling out 150 pesos for the three-volume Obra periodística with an introduction by Jacques Gilard. Back home, reading his work, my anxiety was quickly dispelled. Gabriel García Marquez (1927–2014) is known in the English-speaking world for his lyrical, densely descriptive novels, but as a journalist he was acerbically funny, charming, and slightly bizarre. The young García Márquez devoured what surrounded him. Everything was raw material for his newspaper columns—film adaptations of Faulkner, nudism, dancing bears, the letter X, a woman he saw in an ice cream parlor who may have been the “ugliest I’ve ever seen in my life, or, on the contrary, the most disconcertingly beautiful.” [more inside]
"It is often said that “Washington is Hollywood for ugly people,” but the adage is only half true. Women are not allowed to be ugly people because women—and nowhere more than in such women’s magazines that reduce female political leaders to their supposed fashion and lifestyle choices—are not really allowed to be people at all
The Racism Beat
- Cord Jefferson writes about the repetitive mental strain of being a writer on racism.
He tells you he is one of the martyrs now. He tells you it is not safe for you to stay in your apartment, that soldiers may come soon. At any moment. You agree. It is time to go. You don't have the leisure to cry now over Ali's death now but you are eternally saddened. You pack only the most essential belongings for yourself, Emad and Yara. Before you head down the stairs with your children, you take one last look back at your home and whisper,
xaatrak to yourself. Goodbye.
1,000 Days of Syria
is a "choose your own adventure" historical fiction newsgame
, in which you live the first 1,000 days of the Syrian conflict through the eyes of one of three optional characters. Guardian article
. [more inside]
Wanted: Explainer explainer.
Our venture-funded vertical-driven content prosumer phablet platisher is rapidly growing and we need to add some Ninja Rockstar Content Associates A.S.A.P. See below for a list of open positions!
They didn’t have a permit to rent to a foreigner, but they didn’t have a permit to rent to a Cuban, either. A German wintered in the flat upstairs, and a Chilean political-science student lived below without a problem. I was a yanqui
, so the consequences of staying there could be more grave. But Elaine was willing to risk it if I was. Especially if I was staying for more than a few months. Renting was their family’s only source of income, and they needed to save if they ever wanted to move out of Cuba.
At the end of 2013 Eben Moglen
) gave a lecture in four parts ``Snowden and the Future
´´ presented here in Audio, Video and Text:
Part I: Westward the Course of Empire.
Part II: Oh, Freedom.
Part III: The Union, May it Be Preserved.
Part IV: Freedom's Future.
From Al-Jazeera - A Timeline of the leaks.
From The Tow Centre - Journalism after Snowden.
(scroll down for further links
From Foreign Affairs - How to Spy after Snowden.
(Slightly more than) 100 fantastic pieces of journalism
– by the same staff writer at The Atlantic
, a follow-up to this popular post
from 2011. (Looks like it takes him about five months to assemble them all on one page.)
Yesterday, New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson
- the first woman to hold that position for the paper - was unexpectedly fired
, reportedly because she attempted to bring on a new co-managing editor without consulting the managing editor already at the paper or the publisher
, though there is also a persistent rumor
that it was because she addressed a pay gap between herself and her predecessor
. Today, the first woman managing editor for French paper Le Monde resigned, claiming that she was being undermined
, drawing more attention to
journalism and media's woman problem
. [more inside]
Amos Barshad of Grantland talks to
Darcy Frey and the basketball players
featured in the classic book The Last Shot
20 years after the book's release.
Philip Welsh’s simple life hampers search for his killer.
" By 1 p.m., Philip would leave the small yellow house in Silver Spring where he lived alone. He walked a half-block, waited for the No. 5 bus, took it to his job as a taxi dispatcher, returned home, cooked a late dinner, watched Charlie Rose and went to sleep. He never locked his front door and often left it wide open. Part was defiance. This is how I live. Part was warmth. Anyone is welcome.
One February night, someone came inside — someone Philip may have known — and beat him to death. The case remains Montgomery’s only unsolved killing this year."
Homophobia and competitive tickling.
Journalist David Farrier
explores the "quite weird" world of Competitive Reality Endurance Tickling.
Today is the 150th birthday of Elizabeth Jane Seaman, née Cochran -- best known by her pen name Nellie Bly
. She is perhaps most famous for her re-creation of Jules Verne's epic Around the World in 80 Days
, but this real-life Phileas Fogg did it in a record-breaking 72 days, 6 hours, and 11 minutes, and wrote a book
about her adventure. She was a pioneering investigative journalist, brave enough to get herself committed to an insane asylum to expose its practices, which resulted in the book Ten Days in a Mad-House
. As she wrote, "I was too impatient to work at the usual duties assigned women on newspapers." [more inside]
The American Society of Magazine Editors announced its 2014 winners
at last night's annual awards presentation in New York (complete list here
). While Fast Company
won Magazine of the Year and New York Magazine
won both General Excellence and Website—and Cosmopolitan
brought home its first-ever award (Personal Service) for "Your Cosmo Guide to Contraception
"—below the fold is a selection of the winners from individual categories that are all available on the web. [more inside]
The NBA season has ended, and the playoffs have begun
, causing a figurative ton
of internet ink
to be spilled on predictions and power rankings
. But one word in particular seems to keep popping up in articles to describe white players like Steve Novak, Cody Zeller, Mason Plumlee, Andrew Bogut, and Josh McRoberts: "Dorky." And the writers that use it are inevitably white. Triangle Offense
's Khalid Saalam (previously
) thinks they should probably cut that out.
"When you say ‘war photographer’ the first image that comes to mind is someone crazy for the bang bang. Not Anja. She was an artist. She used her sensitivity and sense of understanding to access the human side of war." In Memoriam: Anja Niedringhaus (1965—2014)
are powerful and beautiful.
Political Hatred in Argentina
: An Interview with Uki Goñi
Two days before I met with Uki Goñi, his analysis of president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner and the crisis in Argentina was the top article on the Guardian website. Goñi is a correspondent for British newspapers, covering events in Argentina, but his professional experiences before this are enough for a number of lives. He arrived in the city in his early twenties and began work as a journalist at the Buenos Aires Herald, an English language daily and the city’s only newspaper reporting on missing people during the dictatorship. Over the next decade he focused on his band Los Helicópteros, and then wrote three books: El Infiltrado. La verdadera historia de Alfredo Astiz, on the activities of the ESMA, an illegal detention center during the country's National Reorganization Process (1976-1983) responsible for disappearances, tortures, and illegal executions; Perón y los Alemanes, on Perón's involvement with Nazi spies in the country; and The Real Odessa, on Nazi criminals' escapes to Argentina.
Newspaper company Digital First Media is expected to announce today that it is shuttering Project Thunderdome
, its three-year old experiment in news content creation and sharing. [more inside]
The Dead Zoo Gang
"Over the last several years, millions of dollars worth of antique rhino horns have been stolen from natural history museum collections around the world. The only thing more unusual than the crimes is the theory about who is responsible: A handful of families from rural Ireland known as the Rathkeale Rovers." (Via
Jared Rosen offers a postmortem of GAME_JAM
, a failed reality show about game development produced by Maker Studios and sponsored by Pepsi. Contestants Adriel Wallick
, Robin Arnott
, and Zoe Quinn
also offer their perspectives.
The Murders at The Lake.
"In the summer of 1982 the city of Waco was confronted with the most vicious crime it had ever seen: three teenagers were savagely stabbed to death, for no apparent reason, at a park by a lake on the edge of town. Justice was eventually served when four men were found guilty of the crime, and two were sent to death row. In 1991, though, when one of the convicts got a new trial and was then found not guilty, some people wondered, Were these four actually the killers? Several years after that, one of the men was put to death, and the stakes were raised: Had Texas executed an innocent man?" [more inside]
"Yes?" she asked me, and the tone of her voice calmed me down. It was as if she was saying, Brandon, I already know what you want to tell me. Please, just say it.
Brandon Ambrosino writes about coming out
as a student at Jerry Falwell's Liberty University. Recently Ambrosino was hired for Ezra Klein's new journalism venture, Vox
, a decision that has bred controversy. Andrew Sullivan explains, and defends him
Chain of Life
is a three part article done by The Star Ledger
of New Jersey, following a rare instance where six patients in New Jersey and New York received kidney transplants in March from six living donors, all unrelated and previously unknown to them. Over 36 hours.
From writing about Tree-Living Anarchists
to a recent GQ story on Drone pilots
, Matthew Power wrote
"The kind of stories I've gotten to do have involved fulfilling my childhood fantasies of having an adventurous life." He had an adventurous life
and brought us along with him
Polyhedra and the Media
- On the new polyhedra of Schein and Gayed, and mathematical journalism.
Today, March 8, is International Women's Day, a day to celebrate the social, political and economic achievements of women, and focus attention on areas still needing action. In the run-up to the event, Reuters photographers in countries around the globe took a series of portraits
of women and their daughters. They asked each mother what her profession was, at what age she had finished education, and what she wanted her daughter to become when she grew up. They also asked each daughter at what age she would finish education and what she wanted to do in the future. (SLAtlantic)