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Monthly Archive

October 2006

The Pentagon Just Wants to Share

The Department of Defense is rolling out a robust new PR machine. But the question is: will they be upfront about what’s news, and what’s PR?

Every few months, it seems, we hear a story about another plan by the Pentagon to try and "get around"... More

Investigative Story Joins Football Coverage in Top Ten

Why is a piece of high-minded investigative journalism hanging out with the usual empty-headed rabble on the most-popular list at the Denver Post?

(The Most Post is an occasional look at the most popular, most blogged, and most emailed stories on the Web.)... More

NY Post’s Circ Surge: Fuzzy Math or Election Weather Vane?

What to make of the New York Post’s circulation uptick? Bloggers discuss.

When the Audit Bureau of Circulations released the latest circulation figures for U.S. daily newspapers yesterday, a surprising statistic emerged:... More

Reporters Turn Ghostbusters for Halloween

Surprising, but true: A smattering of reporters managed to ditch the lame cliches of writing about Halloween to actually do some timely reporting.

For at least three Octobers now, reporters have littered newspaper pages with stories about the worrisome rise in "sexy" Halloween... More

See Slime Run (But Try Not To Follow)

Even more strange twists and turns in the already strange Virginia Senate race.

At the end of last week, in George Allen's attempt to force voters to consider explicit and bizarrely perverse excerpts... More

Times Tries to Predict Future, Bloggers Disagree

The Blog Report is a regular feature in which CJR Daily looks at how big news stories are playing in the blogosphere.

An article appearing in today's New York Times mulled over the identity of today's Democrats, noting that the prevalence of... More

Where’s the Wisdom in the WaPo Profiles of Allen, Webb?

Two lengthy profiles in the Washington Post of George Allen and James Webb fail to dig the Senatorial race in Virginia out from all the mud.

In a midterm election season that is increasingly debased, with Michael J. Fox's tremors and a bare-shouldered blond from Tennessee... More

Bloggers Consider Impact of Lost Soldiers

The mudslinging of the current campaign season continued Thursday night in Virginia. At issue: tawdry fiction writing.

The mudslinging of the current campaign season continued Thursday night in Virginia, where incumbent Republican Senator George Allen issued a... More

Why Does it Take a Newspaper Two Stories to Report the Facts?

Newspapers usually offer three different views of an important story: straight reporting, analysis, and opinion. One of these often seems the odd man out.

It has become a welcome staple of contemporary American journalism for a newspaper to run an analysis piece, in addition... More

Some Jerk Discovers Nice People in Offices

The Christian Science Monitor breaks the news — and it’s news to us — that, “At Work, ‘Nice’ is On the Rise.”

Last week, the Christian Science Monitor's Marilyn Gardner broke the news (and it came as news to us) that, "At... More

Amid Tennessee Hubbub, Bloggers March to Battle

One of the more dirty campaign seasons in recent memory got a little muckier in recent days thanks to two political ads in Tennessee.

One of the more dirty campaign seasons in recent memory got a little muckier in recent days thanks to some... More

Crossfire on the Today Show Plaza

Why not invite the heads of the Republican and Democratic National Committees on your show to “talk” about the upcoming election/s? Exhibit A.

For producers of television news shows everywhere: Exhibit A for Why Not to Invite the Heads of the Republican and... More

What Makes an Article About Bed-Sharing So … Share-able?

Somewhat improbably, an article about a book on bed-sharing cracks the New York Times’ most emailed list — and stays there for 30 days.

(The Most Post is an occasional look at the most popular, most blogged, and most emailed stories on the Web.)... More

Bloggers in a Spin About Dubious Paraguay Land Deal

Today in the ‘sphere: bloggers undeterred by the highly speculative nature of the president’s supposed land speculation.

On Monday, the Guardian published a story under this unexpected headline: "Paraguay in a spin about Bush's alleged 100,000 acre... More

Has the Chicago Tribune Heard of “Splogs”?

While some writers celebrate the explosion of the blogosphere, they don’t seem to be in possession of all the facts.

Just when we thought journalists were finally getting tired of overhyping the expansion of the blogosphere, we read Steve Johnson's... More

Bloomberg Markets Uncovers a Staggering Scandal

The magazine reports on $7 billion in phantom bonds issued by local governments across the country over the past decade, making an arcane issue come alive.

The headline is "Broken Promises," the special report "Duping Main Street." Words clad in mulberry explain: "Wall Street created $7... More

Changing Direction, or Changing the Rhetoric?

Traditional journalism isn’t always at its best when parsing the difference between real change, and lip service.

Isn't it lovely when reality and the Onion melt into one? All pretense of seriousness is dropped and the true... More

God Versus Science — Back in the News

A new book about religious belief has been burning up the pages of newspapers and magazines lately, and the outlook for a peaceful solution looks bleak.

God versus science is back in the news -- again. As sure as Newton's Third Law of Motion, that every... More

Emotions Flare as Bloggers Judge CNN’s ‘Unvarnished Truth’

Bloggers weigh the costs and benefits of CNN’s decision to air footage from a videotape made by Iraqi insurgents.

On October 18, during a segment of Anderson Cooper 360°, CNN aired footage from a videotape made by Iraqi insurgents,... More

Media Stokes Obama Drama, Bloggers Less Coy

The senator’s Meet the Press interview propelled talk about a possible 2008 presidential run to a new level, not least in the blogosphere.

During a five-day span last week, the New York Times published four Op-Ed columns speculating about Illinois Senator Barack Obama's... More

Wired Scribe Tells How He Busted A MySpace Sex Offender

Having written an automated script that searched MySpace profiles for registered sex offenders, a reporter details how he put the story together.

Kevin Poulsen is a senior editor at Wired News where he has covered MySpace, computer security, and blogging, among... More

Tempered Praise for the Amazing, Self-Parking Car

A car that can park itself? Now that’s incredible news. But how well does it actually work?

"For those that see driving and parking as a chore, there's relief in sight," MarketWatch reported last month. "Take the... More

Humanizing the North Korean Nukes Story

We’re awash in stories about the political gamesmanship involved in North Korea’s nuclear test. But how do the people of South Korea, Japan and China feel about it?

There is no shortage of unknown variables when it comes to gauging the significance of North Korea's decision to test... More

Nothing New, in 3,800 Words

Robert Kagan takes to the pages of The New Republic to spout vain platitudes and engage in some vapid myth-making.

We see it all the time. A well-known columnist and author of Important Books, who has a new tome out... More

Bloggers on Tet, Iraq, and Snuffleupagus

As usual, the mere mention of Iraq and Vietnam in the same sentence was sufficient to ignite a feeding frenzy.

In an interview yesterday with ABC's George Stephanopoulos, President George W. Bush accepted a comparison between the 1968 Tet Offensive... More

Dow Crosses Barrier, ABC Goes Berserk

As the Dow passes another milestone, ABC makes the news known in inimitable fashion.

One of the "Top Headlines" on ABC News' Web site at 10:15 this morning was "Dow Jones Industrials Cross 12,000... More

Roller Derby Revival at the Times

What’s this we hear about a roller derby revival?

From an article this morning in the New York Times about the roller derby revival in Ulster County: Roller derby,... More

Al Roker Sure Loves His “Man Candy”

Seems Al Roker, of NBC’s Today Show, has a sweet spot for the expression “man candy.”

Many a television newsman has had a signature phrase, whether it's a unique sign-off or a particular expression that viewers... More

‘Gay Activist Blogger’ Sets Off ‘Spheric Furor

Michael Rogers tries to out a senator, and bloggers respond with a ton of indignation.

On Tuesday evening, while interviewing left-wing radio host Ed Schultz, self-described "gay activist blogger" Michael Rogers announced his intention to... More

Why Did 60 Minutes Censor on the Web But Not on the Air?

The backstory of why an exotic dancer’s comments ran unaltered Sunday night, yet were censored on

On Sunday night on 60 Minutes, CBS's Ed Bradley interviewed the three erstwhile Duke University lacrosse players accused earlier this... More

Trachsel Gets Pounded, Again and Again

In case you haven’t heard, Mets starter Steve Trachsel pitched horribly in Game 3 of the NLCS in St. Louis Saturday night.

In case you haven't heard, Mets starter Steve Trachsel pitched horribly in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series... More

Tony Snow Hits the Road, Blogosphere Hits Back

The New York Times, and several bloggers, get all worked up over Tony Snow’s recent performance in Chicago.

In yesterday's New York Times, White House reporter Sheryl Gay Stolberg reported on the newest development in Tony Snow's evolving... More

Half Full or Half Empty? U.S. Glass has 300 Million Drops of Water

As the United States population reached 300 million early this morning, reporters took the opportunity to provide a State of the Union address of sorts.

Look into the melting pot and describe what you see. That was the challenge confronting journalists as the United States... More

Post Fact-Checks ‘Islamist Loonies’

The New York paper hyped up an empty controversy, giving attention to a message that deserved none.

"Radical Muslims have conjured up one more reason to rage against America -- the Fifth Avenue Apple Store," the New... More

Is the Post Taking Woodward’s Table Scraps?

Bob Woodward again uses the valuable real estate of the Washington Post as a place to dump stuff he can’t use in his books.

One of the knocks on Bob Woodward's relationship with the Washington Post -- and really, on Woodward in general --... More

GOP Diverts Funds, Liberal Bloggers Pounce

If there’s one thing that can get the partisan blogosphere going, it’s an election-season article by Adam Nagourney in the New York Times.

The New York Times reports today that the Republican leadership has effectively given up on Ohio Senator Mike DeWine's reelection... More

Two Toronto Editors on an Afternoon Newspaper Experiment

Can an online PDF version of an afternoon paper work? The Toronto Star is in the process of finding out.

In early September the Toronto Star rolled out Star P.M., an afternoon edition in PDF format that is the first... More

The Former Mayor Keeps on Moving

Since leaving office, Ed Koch has embarked on a varied media career and become the ultimate platform-agnostic octogenarian.

On a recent rainy afternoon, Ed Koch sat in his corner office at a Midtown law firm and spoke about... More

Bloggers Ponder Future of Los Angeles Times Anew

For bloggers, news yesterday about the paper’s so-called “Manhattan Project” provided plenty of fodder for discussion.

A story published on Thursday in the New York Times examined the Los Angeles Times' so-called "Manhattan Project," an internal... More

How Do You Photograph the Amish? Let Us Count the Ways

Covering a grieving community whose beliefs prohibit them from being photographed is a tricky, sensitive assignment — but an eminently doable one.

Last week, as details of the murders at an Amish school in Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania were still unfolding, a CJR... More

The Devil (Or the Full Story) Is in the Details

On North Korean nukes, who has successfully distilled this complex political story — and who has churned out the Cliffs Notes version?

Complex political stories, saddled with winding, somewhat partisan histories, aren't exactly the friend of tight deadlines. But reporters -- even... More

Debating the Body Count in Iraq

The press should be less skeptical of a recent academic study which found that so far 654,965 Iraqis have died due to the fighting, sectarian and otherwise.

When war is waged to improve the lives of a country's people, the body count -- the number of those... More

Bloggers Dive Into Murky Details of Reid Land Sale

The blogosphere is just wild about Harry — Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, that is. The swarms have been out in force today, talking about a land deal the leader was involved in.

On Wednesday, the Associated Press reported on some allegedly problematic real estate dealings by Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid. According... More

London Times Prints ‘Rumour,’ Market Goes Gaga

London Times’ “Rumour of the day” sets U.S. financial press — save the St. Louis Business Journal — a-speculating.

"Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc.'s shares rose 2 percent Tuesday after London newspaper the Times printed a rumor that a Connecticut hedge... More

YouTube Deal is Doomed Just Because It Is

A surprising number of journalists expect every business event to fit neatly into an established pattern. Witness the Times on Google’s purchase of YouTube.

The business world is filled with unprecedented moments. Deals happen that don't resemble anything previous, a stock surprises, a new... More

Is PageGate the Midterm Clincher? Not Exactly

Will the complexities of this midterm Congressional election be reduced to the creepy emails Mark Foley sent to Congressional pages?

It's "Super Tuesday" today at CJR Daily, and we've been looking at the results of a variety of polls published... More

Uncertainty and Bloggers Surround Blast in North Korea.

Bloggers react to news reports that the blast in North Korea might have been triggered by little more than conventional explosives.

Today's Washington Times leads with a provocative piece by Bill Gertz, stating that the explosion in North Korea on Sunday... More

Woodward as Easy Target

In criticizing Bob Woodward’s latest book, some critics fail to take an honest look at the true, and enduring, impact of his work.

"Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more." Like Henry V bracing his troops for battle, book reviewers, media... More

Do Blumenthal and Lapham Lack A Sense of Humor?

Bloggers debate Jennifer Senior’s unflattering reviews of two books taking aim at the Bush administration.

In response to a pair of controversial book reviews by Jennifer Senior in last week's New York Times Sunday Book... More

The Press Must Lead the Debate, Not Just Reflect it

As the role of the press continues to be hotly debated, one thing remains clear: it has never been just a passive observer.

During a recent segment of WNYC's "On The Media," Ethan Bronner, the New York Times's deputy foreign editor, said this... More

For CNN, Joke’s on Colonial Overlords, FEMA

The network needed a little levity in its seven o’clock hour this morning — and a “FEMA Field Trip” was certainly ripe for the picking.

CNN needed a little levity in its seven o'clock hour this morning. A toxic cloud in North Carolina and the... More

‘A Good, Old-Fashioned Human Triumph’

G. Wayne Miller of the Providence Journal on devoting an entire year of reporting to “an ordinary person who has done some extraordinary things.”

The Providence Journal has always had a reputation as a newspaper that values narrative and gives space to long-form journalism... More

Dancing With Who Brung Ya …

Dennis Hastert works the partisan angle one time too many, and in doing so reminds us of a strange story from 2004.

The Chicago Tribune this morning had one of the more interesting reads we've seen thus far in the mainstream media... More

Is the Foley Scandal Bringing the Blogosphere Together?

Bloggers on both the Right and the Left can agree on one thing, and one thing only: the GOP leadership isn’t doing a good job at spin control.

To no one's surprise, the Foley scandal continues to dominate headlines today, as politicians, pundits, and media outlets rack up... More

There’s No Conspiracy Behind an Error at Fox News

Before salivating bloggers go bonkers spinning Fox’s Mark Foley mistake into a grand plot, they might want to go back and look at the actual record. Oops, too late.

As various news outlets and bloggers have already pointed out, last night Fox News accidentally labeled disgraced erstwhile GOP Congressman... More

The Newspaper That the National Media Forgot?

While not as high-profile as New Orleans, the staff of the Biloxi, Miss. Sun Herald stayed at their posts during Katrina, too.

Just two years ago, as a student at Columbia's Graduate School of Journalism, Josh Norman was accused by one of... More

Two Reporters Paid to Xerox One Story

Both Reuters and Dow Jones Newswires rehash the New York Times’ latest news about Wal-Mart, with unenviable results.

We often report on reporters reporting on reports from reporters, and we occasionally flog mediocre articles about Wal-Mart. Now, thanks... More

“The Ethicist” Snarls His Way to Irrelevance on CNN

Anderson Cooper hands the keys off to John Roberts for the night, and Randy Cohen wrecks the joint.

In a turn of events that is no doubt a relief to "Senator Macacawitz", the revelation that Florida Republican Mark... More

Who Are the Amish? Daily News Shows; Post Calls

After the Pennsylvania school shooting, a couple of New York tabloids struggle to explain these mysterious Amish to us.

Does it matter? Does it really matter for readers if a reporter, covering a side-bar-type story to a main news... More

Bloggers on Foley and Hastert’s Future

In a surprise move this morning, the editorial page of the Washington Times declared Dennis Hastert must “resign his speakership at once.”

In a surprise move this morning, the notoriously conservative editorial page of the Washington Times called for the immediate resignation... More

In DeWine v. Brown, AP Goes Beyond Finger-Wagging

When it came to sorting through Mike DeWine and Sherrod Brown’s various charges and countercharges, one report stood out.

Sparks flew yesterday on Meet the Press as Republican incumbent Mike DeWine and Democratic challenger Sherrod Brown, meeting for the... More

What Trent Lott Might Want to Know About Iraq

While talking heads and politicians debate the meaning of the debate about the war, Iraq continues to burn.

Three and a half years into the war in Iraq, a cursory look at the nightly news shows, opinion magazines... More

Woodward Roils the Blogosphere

Everyone is weighing in on Bob Woodward’s new book — and, as usual, there is little common ground between the Left and the Right.

This weekend saw the release of "State of Denial," Bob Woodward's latest book in an on-going portrait of the Bush... More

Are You Now, or Have You Ever Been, a Jew?

The politics of identity can sometimes make for some uncomfortable questions — and our major newspapers apparently aren’t afraid to ask them.

Last Thursday, at a vociferous debate in New York City's Cooper Union, we heard something that struck us as a... More

A Newfangled Journalism Technique Leaps Across the Country

Taking the Los Angeles Times’ lead, a daily newspaper in Maine is drawing attention to the plight of a local river in a quirky way.

Throughout the midterm campaign season, most newspapers around the country have monitored the various races using fairly standard tools --... More

New survey reveals everything you think about freelancing is true - Data from Project Word quantifies challenges of freelance investigative reporting

Why one editor won’t run any more op-eds by the Heritage Foundation’s top economist - A reply to Paul Krugman on state taxes and job growth made some incorrect claims

Why we ‘stave off’ colds - It all started with wine

The New Republic, then and now - Tallying the staff turnover at the overhauled magazine

Why serious journalism can coexist with audience-pleasing content - Legacy media organizations should experiment with digital platforms while continuing to publish hard news

The rise of feelings journalism (TNR)

“Bloom engaged in an increasingly popular style of writing, which I’ve discussed on my blog before, which I call “feelings journalism.” It involves a writer making an argument based on what they imagine someone else is thinking, what they feel may be another person’s feelings. The realm of fact, of reporting, has been left behind.”

Things a war correspondent should never say (WSJ)

“The correspondent retelling war stories surely knows that fellow correspondents had faced the same dangers or worse”

On WaPo trying to interview a cow (National Journal)

“‘I wasn’t milked on the White House lawn by a strange man,’ The Washington Post—the venerable institution that would later come to break the Watergate scandal and win 48 Pulitzers—quoted her, a farm animal, as saying”


Greg Marx discusses democracy and news with Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute

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