We got through the basics—how I’d arrived in Libya, why I was there—in civil tones. Then the Inspector asked, “If you were a professor at Harvard, why did you quit your job to come risk your life in Libya?” I explained as best I could that I had not been a professor but a graduate student, and part of my training was teaching undergraduates. The academic job market was tough and demoralizing, and the rigidity of the academic lifestyle had never appealed to me that much anyway. I had suspected for a few years that I’d be temperamentally better suited to working as a reporter. “Why you work journalist? You don’t study journalism, you study history!”
—What I Lost in Libya
by Clare Morgana Gillis, a journalist who was captured by Gadhafi forces.
posted by Kattullus
on Dec 6, 2011 -
Women journalists confront harassment, sexism when using social media You come to expect it, as a woman writer, particularly if you’re political. You come to expect the vitriol, the insults, the death threats. After a while, the emails and tweets and comments containing graphic fantasies of how and where and with what kitchen implements certain pseudonymous people would like to rape you cease to be shocking, and become merely a daily or weekly annoyance, something to phone your girlfriends about, seeking safety in hollow laughter.
posted by modernnomad
on Nov 22, 2011 -
Many listeners have written to us since our episode about Georgia Judge Amanda Williams, asking what ever happened to her. Did she face any consequences for the things we documented on our program? Yesterday, Georgia’s Judicial Qualifications Commission filed formal charges
[PDF] against her. The twelve counts include a number of things reported in our episode: sending away inmates for indefinite detention, jailing Charlie McCullough for 14 days for exercising his right to contest a drug screen, and using “rude, abusive, or insulting language” with individuals appearing before her.
Local reporting from the Altanta Journal-Constitution. Previously.
posted by gerryblog
on Nov 10, 2011 -
The American Journalism Review asks, is automotive journalism fundamentally corrupt?
Car manufacturers pay for lavish trips and grant extensive seat time in their most desirable cars – in exchange for good reviews. Journalists who write critical reviews are blacklisted. Among the worst offenders is Porsche, who blacklisted journalist Jack Baruth
after lukewarm (or simply balanced) print
reviews of the Porsche Panamera in 2009. Since then, Baruth, who owns three Porsches, has taken to compiling lists of Porsche’s deadly sins (1
, but not 7
), fabricating Porsche test drives
fellow automotive journalists who he sees as being too soft
on Porsche, and borrowing privately-owned cars
in order to write reviews. Baruth writes mostly for The Truth About Cars
, which guards the independence of its writers so fiercely that its reviews of the Prius, for instance, ranged from the unremittingly hostile
to defensively positive
to relatively balanced
. But what about journalistic independence in mainstream outlets, which often rely on freelancers who simply don't have the funds to be functionally independent of car manufacturers, and which don't want to displease advertisers?
posted by Dasein
on Oct 3, 2011 -
A year ago this August, 72 migrant workers -- 58 men and 14 women -- 'were on their way to the US border when they were murdered by a drug gang
at a ranch in northern Mexico, in circumstances that remain unexplained. Since then, a group of Mexican journalists and writers have created' a "Day of the Dead-style Virtual Altar" Spanish-language website, 72migrantes.com
, to commemorate each of the victims, some of whom have never been identified. The New York Review of Books has English translations of five of their profiles. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Sep 7, 2011 -
"I can’t imagine a nonfiction writer who wasn’t influenced by the fiction he or she had read. But the “thriller-like pacing” you find in my writing may come more from my own beat than from thrillers. I walk fast and am impatient. I get bored easily—no less with my own ideas than with those of others. Writing for me is a process of constantly throwing out stuff that doesn’t seem interesting enough. I grew up in a family of big interrupters." Janet Malcolm interviewed by Katie Roiphe in The Paris Review
posted by escabeche
on Jul 25, 2011 -
Could Rupert Murdoch really not have known about phone-hacking?
Veteran Canadian journalist and TV producer Howard Bernstein thinks it’s possible, because something almost as bad happened at CTV News, which “produced a story on Chinese students keeping Canadians out of Canadian universities. It was a crock, fabricated by a senior producer on the show.... I am certain [the] then-president of CTV had absolutely no idea.... So why is it so hard to believe that Rupert and son didn’t know about the telephone hacking?”
posted by joeclark
on Jul 21, 2011 -
is a wiki site set up by The Center for Media and Democracy which posts and chronicles leaked documents including more than 800 model bills drafted and approved by corporations during ALEC meetings. The documents have been analyzed and marked-up
for clarity. Journalists along with the general public are invited to download the documents and sift through
in order to help map the connections back to their own state legislation and legislators. [more inside]
posted by stagewhisper
on Jul 14, 2011 -
PR Industry Fills Vacuum Left by Shrinking Newsrooms
- "You would go into these hearings and there would be more PR people representing these big players than there were reporters, sometimes by a factor of two or three" ..it's getting tougher to know when a storyline originates with a self-interested party producing its own story.
posted by thisisdrew
on Jul 12, 2011 -
Threats, blackmail, bribery and illegal bugging all in the name of journalism? Jack Anderson
, the bombastic muckraker who broke some of the biggest political stories of the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, would have felt right at home at the News of the World
. A devout Mormon
, Anderson was "part circus huckster, part guerrilla fighter, part righteous rogue
," a crusading journalist who believed that God was behind his work, no matter how he went about it. [more inside]
posted by not_the_water
on Jul 7, 2011 -
Thirteen-year-old Milly Dowler
was kidnapped and murdered on her way home from school in 2002. During the six-month hunt before her body was found, her parents gave exclusive interviews to the News of the World
, saying they believed she would be found alive.
That hope was based partly on the fact that her voicemails were still being listened to and deleted. Today, it was revealed that the deleting was being done by the News of the World
. [more inside]
posted by bonaldi
on Jul 4, 2011 -
One night, I awoke out of a dead sleep, and jumped to my computer, and instantly began typing up an article about David Letterman. I kept going for ten minutes, until I realized I had dreamed it all. There was no article to write; I was simply typing up the same meaningless phrases that we all always used: “LADY GAGA PANTLESS ON LATE NIGHT WITH DAVID LETTERMAN,” or some such.
AOL Hell: An AOL Content Slave Speaks Out.
posted by Horace Rumpole
on Jun 17, 2011 -
Photojournalism in Libya from "a towering perspective": Bryan’s height — somewhere north of 6 feet 6 inches, closer to 7 feet with helmet and boots — is both a perennial joke and a source of wonder among those who cover war and know him. Why would anyone so damn tall take on a line of work where, on many days, you want to be small? Let’s be clear. Bryan is a big target. Correction: he is a very big target. He looks like a walking sheet of plywood out there.
posted by oxford blue
on Jun 1, 2011 -
The public pillorying of Janet Malcolm is one of the scandals of American letters. ... why is it Malcolm, a virtuoso stylist and a subtle, exciting thinker, who drives critics into a rage? What journalist of her caliber is as widely disliked or as often accused of bad faith? And why did so few of her colleagues stand up for her during the circus of a libel trial that scarred her career? In the animus toward her there is something almost personal. [more inside]
posted by Trurl
on Jun 1, 2011 -
, arguably one of the greatest screenwriters in Hollywood history, started his career in the (sometimes literally) cutthroat world of Jazz Age journalism at the Chicago Daily News. Throughout 1921 he wrote a series of remarkable vignettes collectively titled the Thousand and One Afternoons in Chicago
: stories of drifters, fops, and artists from Michigan Avenue to Chinatown, but most of all a fond portrait of the city itself. Collected in book form and gorgeously illustrated, the Thousand and One Afternoons
are in the public domain and readily available online
. Each story is four or five short pages in length, and goes great with coffee.
posted by theodolite
on May 31, 2011 -