But I couldn't do it. I spent three months and I just couldn't do it. And the reason was because I kept on meeting people who worked in the credit industry and they were really boring. I couldn't make them light up the page. And, as I said in The Psychopath Test, if you want to get away with wielding true malevolent power, be boring. Journalists hate writing about boring people, because we want to look good, you know? A Chat With Writer Jon Ronson [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Nov 16, 2012 -
The new "no comment": F-Off.
Has electronic media created an F-bomb journalistic culture? "The close 2012 presidential campaign has been an especially ideal environment for this new mind-set of nonstop combat — marked by blazing email trails, streaked with profanity and accusations of incompetence and bad faith."
posted by Xurando
on Nov 5, 2012 -
The 4th Estate corrects its numbers -
"That journalism struggles with racial diversity is old news, but a study released on Thursday by The 4th Estate tried to quantify the magnitude of the problem. The organization released an infographic showing that, among the 38 most influential newspapers in the country, 93 percent of front-page articles about the 2012 election were written by white reporters. The infographic received a host of coverage." [more inside]
posted by marienbad
on Oct 29, 2012 -
"Is she O.K.?" a customer asks.
"My mom?" asks Kristy, the waitress.
"Yes," the customer replies.
Since Sunday, the front page of the New York Times has been featuring a portrait in five parts
of Elyria, Ohio (pop: 55,000), seen mostly through the lens of a local diner. (Second link is to a full multimedia feature, but direct links to the five individual articles can be found within.) [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Oct 18, 2012 -
The Absurd Quest for Euro Crisis Images: The Greeks aren't the only ones sick of the euro crisis. Photographers are reaching the end of their tether too, struggling to shoot images of euro coins in various states of distress to illustrate the story. Though some of the photos are absurd, they still get published -- because news outlets are equally desperate. Gallery
posted by daniel_charms
on Oct 17, 2012 -
is "devoted exclusively to sharing New York’s untold stories—the rich, intricate narratives that get at the heart of what this city’s all about." The site, launched in September, presents one long-form piece of journalism, sometimes text, sometimes video, sometimes a photo essay, sometimes audio.
posted by beagle
on Oct 8, 2012 -
Why did one newspaper, in a story copied by several other UK newspapers, somewhat underestimate
the number of adult cod in the North Sea by a factor of...
posted by Wordshore
on Sep 29, 2012 -
Analog, Warren Buffett and Digital Media
- Why Warren Buffett invests in newspapers: " You essentially have a business that will make a lot of money if you are terrific, it will make a lot of money if you're lousy," Buffett said, "...how good a newspaper is depends entirely on the wishes of its owner. There is no correlation between profits and excellence," Buffett added, "there's really nothing like that in American business." Enjoy nearly a full 60 minutes
of Warren Buffet's (all too rare) public teaching style in this recently uploaded video from 1992
posted by spock
on Sep 28, 2012 -
"I, Polina Marinova, have resigned as the editor-in-chief from The Red & Black
, the student newspaper covering the University of Georgia. The Red & Black’s top editors, design staff, photo staff and reporters walked out of the newspaper building this afternoon."
The mass departure follows a memo of staff expectations
issued by the board of directors of the newspaper, which is independent of the university. Among the "expectations" issued by the board to which Marinova objected was that the newspaper's coverage find a balance of "GOOD" (human interest pieces directly relating to the UGA student audience) and "BAD" (explained in the board's memo as "Content that catches people or organizations doing bad things. I guess this is 'journalism'."). This was followed by a final note to "[i]f in question, have more GOOD than BAD." Marinova also alleged that students no longer have final approval in the content of the newspaper, writing that "[r]ecently, editors have felt pressure to assign stories they didn't agree with, take 'grip and grin' photos and compromise the design of the paper." [more inside]
posted by ctab
on Aug 15, 2012 -
. Jonah Peretti, a co-founder of the Huffington Post, later went on to found BuzzFeed, famous for it's linkbait lists
. He recently wrote a company-wide memo touting the company's success and plans for the future.
posted by gwint
on Jul 31, 2012 -
"The Western observer tends to split the Russian press into two camps: evil statists and martyrs. But for their part, members of the Russian press are convinced of their superiority over their Western colleagues, at least when it comes to Syria. Russian journalists aren’t under the illusion that they are more objective than their Western counterparts, but they are convinced of their ability to convey a more realistic, complex picture of the events in Syria."
- The New Republic: In Russia, Even Putin’s Critics Are OK With His Syria Policy
posted by beisny
on Jul 24, 2012 -
In 1891 author and lecturer ”Max O’Rell
” (being the pen name of one Léon Paul Blouet) published an amusing account of his travels through the States and Eastern Canada - "A Frenchman In America
" - that, along with the charming illustrations, reflect on then popular national stereotypes and character and is presented on Project Gutenberg in its entirely. (via
posted by The Whelk
on Jul 7, 2012 -
Last year, Wired
reported that 'The FBI is teaching
its counterterrorism agents that “main stream” [sic] American Muslims are likely to be terrorist sympathizers; that the Prophet Mohammed was a “cult leader”; and that the Islamic practice of giving charity is no more than a “funding mechanism for combat.”' (previously
The FBI pledged reform, but the materials appeared to be deeply embedded
. After the President ordered
a review, the FBI 'purged'
the documents from training materials.
Earlier this year Wired
reported that 'U.S. Military Taught Officers
: Use ‘Hiroshima’ Tactics for ‘Total War’ on Islam.' [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Jun 25, 2012 -
Sadly, a great and little known columnist from Salida, Colorado, has just passed away
. His work remains online.
His small-town values were the best of small-town values. His political views were well-considered, but not always doctrinaire. Check out his final column
for an example of his wit and common sense. I will miss him immensely. (Another Denver columnist I love just checked out - of work, not life, and not voluntarily - Tina Griego: this
is her goodbye column.) Our newspaper grows thinner and shriller.
posted by kozad
on Jun 4, 2012 -
Kevin Roose's The Unlikely Disciple
, in which Brown attends Jerry Falwell's evangelical Liberty University for a semester (excerpt
), has been featured on MetaFilter previously
, but it deserves to be looked at in more detail. What distinguishes the book is Roose's determination to look at the people behind the belief rather than just lampooning the belief itself; he writes about interviewing Falwell
(and he was in fact the last person to interview Falwell before his death), and about his uneasiness about finding the likable, human elements that went alongside the fanaticism. After publication, Liberty University allowed the book in its bookstore, but inserted a three-paragraph disclaimer warning readers of inaccuracies and telling them to be skeptical; Roose rebuts the disclaimer. An English professor at Liberty University offers an interesting perspective. Meanwhile, Roose runs a blog series called Meet Jerry's Kids, in which he interviews LU students, and The Jonah Project, where he encourages people who disagree politically or religiously to have reasoned, yelling-free discussions about the novel.
posted by Rory Marinich
on May 31, 2012 -
The Hemingway Papers:
The legendary writer’s reporting from the Toronto Star archives, featuring historical annotations by William McGeary, a former editor who researched Hemingway’s columns extensively for the newspaper, along with new insight and analysis from the Star’s team of Hemingway experts.
posted by Fizz
on May 28, 2012 -
has come into focus
as a platform where leakers submit material specifying participating media organizations to receive early access as well as a later date for a full non-exclusive release. In principle, OpenLeaks cannot access the leaked documents themselves until this later release date. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges
on May 20, 2012 -
A treatise on fungibility, or, a framework for understanding the mess the news industry is in and the opportunities that lie ahead. The younger the person you ask, the less likely it is you’ll find that link between wanting to know what’s going on and grabbing a paper or opening up a news website. They use Pinterest to figure out what’s fashionable and Facebook to see if there’s anything fun going on next weekend. They use Facebook just the same to figure out whether there’s anything they need to be upset about and need to protest against.
posted by shakespeherian
on May 11, 2012 -