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Monthly Archive

December 2006

How Long Is a Tenth of a Second?

The Knicks’ stunning victory at Madison Square Garden the other night has led to some excitable sports writing.

By all accounts, the Knicks provided their fans with a stunning victory at Madison Square Garden the other night, as... More

Poverty Pendulum Swings, Press Yawns

The recent news from the Brookings Institution that more Americans now live in poverty in suburbs than in cities has not been well covered by the press.

More Americans now live in poverty in suburbs than in cities, a somewhat surprising shift that the Brookings Institution says... More

Bloggers Lash Out Against Santa Barbara Lawsuit

Mostly, bloggers commenting on the latest News-Press turmoil feel that Wendy McCaw has gone a bit overboard.

On Monday, the Associated Press reported that the publishers of the Santa Barbara News-Press had filed a lawsuit against Susan... More

Newsweek Ignores Its Own Poll, Launches ‘08 Race

If you want to know what Newsweek’s recent Election 2008-related poll found, try reading the New York Post or Newsday.

In the thick of Jonathan Alter’s Newsweek cover story this week -- headline, “The Race Is On. Obama & Hillary... More

No Need to Worry: FP Has Swept Bird Flu Under Rug

According to the magazine, “the cure seems worse than the disease.”

On Monday, Foreign Policy magazine unveiled its list of "The Top Ten Stories You Missed in 2006," a sampling of... More

Will History Be Forgotten Once Again?

When it comes to the “troop surge” issue in Iraq, will newspapers continue to ignore historical context?

A headline in today's Washington Post reminded us of something we read the other day -- which, in turn, reminded... More

A Forgotten Piece of the Middle East Puzzle

A reporter travels to Lebanon to check in with the United Nations troops stationed there.

Foreign correspondents -- who, by dint of their profession, are obviously a far-flung lot -- seem to be stretched particularly... More

In Baltimore, Sun Shines On “Ground Rent” Outrage

Sometimes, we’re reminded how journalism can change things for the better when a newspaper remembers that it’s part of a community.

Last week the Baltimore Sun ran a three-part series that examined an archaic law that has been used by some... More

Time Names POY, Bloggers Not Tickled

Bloggers respond to their new honor with witty puns and sarcastic punditry.

In an apparent attempt to elicit witty puns and sarcastic punditry from bloggers, Time magazine has announced that its much-anticipated... More

Times-Pic Reporter Finds Lessons For New Orleans in Japan

Gordon Russell on what New Orleans can learn from Tokyo and Kobe, and the rewards of working in a city where people are now much more engaged in the news.

Gordon Russell's two-part series comparing disaster management and recovery in Tokyo and Kobe, Japan with that in New Orleans ran... More

More Troops in Iraq? We’ve Got History on That

Coverage of the McCain/Lieberman/Kagan proposal for more U.S. troops in Iraq shows, once again, how journalists are often possessed of pretty short memories.

One of the criticisms we level regularly at journalists is that they're often possessed of pretty short memories. We've seen... More

Snow Offers Olive Branch, Bloggers Remain Partisan

Tony Snow apologizes to David Gregory, sending shockwaves rippling through the blogosphere.

Last week, in a testy exchange that received much attention on political blogs and talk shows, Tony Snow dismissed an... More

The “Good News” Chorus Sings On

The First Lady takes a shot at the press, harping on a silly argument.

We're not sure who this is a criticism of -- Laura Bush, or more generally, the people who complain about... More

Jesus Christ, Cover Star

It’s that time of year again for the newsweeklies: Christ-as-Cover-Boy time. How has the Jesus Cover Story been packaged over the years? How has it changed (or not)?

It's that time of year again for the newsweeklies: Christ-as-Cover-Boy time. Jesus, of course, is as reliably evergreen a cover... More

As Clich├ęs Go, Airline Merger Already a Success

A “flurry” of talks about airlines joining forces has led to some clunky journalistic prose.

As the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times first reported last night, United Airlines and Continental Airlines have... More

(Re)Writing Pinochet’s Legacy

Conservative or liberal, editorial pages can only expect to be taken seriously if they are consistent. Call a monster a monster.

If only Jeanne Kirkpatrick could have stayed around a few more days, she would have felt vindicated by the obituaries... More

Pinochet Dies, But the Blogging Debate Continues

In the blogosphere, our favorite online pundits debate what the Chilean dictator wrought.

On Sunday, the BBC reported the death of right-wing Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, an autocratic general who presided over a... More

GMA Does Its Part to Keep the Nation Scared

Yesterday, on Good Morning America, ABC took a look at the dangers posed by exotic pets.

Yesterday, on Good Morning America, ABC took a look at the dangers posed by exotic pets. Instead of asking for... More

CNN (Humorously) Practices the Art of Character Assassination

Jeff Greenfield goes after Barack Obama — in the most amateurish way possible.

Sometimes, against what we would hope are their better instincts, the respected machers of the cable media world make the... More

Neocon Critics of the ISG Report Have a Lot of Explaining To Do

An entertaining look back at the uneven track record of some conservative critics of the Baker-Hamilton report.

In their continuing coverage of the fallout from the Baker-Hamilton report issued last week, the Washington Post's Michael Abramowitz and... More

NY Post Officially No Longer a Newspaper

The New York Post runs one of the more absurd front pages in recent memory, creating self-fulfilling news.

In case you missed it, the New York Post ran one of the more absurd front pages in recent memory... More

Hillary, Meet Barack. America, Meet the New Storyline.

The Washington Post offers up some news you can use. Or not.

Every so often, while reading some of the insidery Washington, D.C. stuff that political reporters love to pass along to... More

Newsosaur Sparks News Desk Debate

Amid the clamorous discussion over the dire future of daily newspapers, a new debate was opened this week over the value of continuous news desks.

Amid the clamorous discussion over the dire future of daily newspapers, a new debate was opened this week by journalist/Silicon... More

Hey, Victor Davis Hanson! It’s Not Our Fault

A columnist uses a rhetorical device in order to make a point — and misses the point in the process.

Lest anyone forget that today is the 65th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, columnist Victor Davis Hanson... More

‘Way Forward’ Unveiled, Bloggers Not Impressed

Early today, bloggers have been responding to both the Baker-Hamilton Report and the ISG’s televised press conference in real time.

The Baker-Hamilton Report, entitled "The Way Forward," finally made it to President Bush's desk this morning, and is already rapidly... More

“Boomlets” Abound at New York Mag

This week’s magazine reports on the “Bloomberg 2008 boomlet,” contributing to said boomlet with a cover story pronouncing that Bloomberg is “serious” about a presidential run in ‘08.

This week, New York magazine's John Heilemann reports on what he dubs the "[Michael] Bloomberg 2008 boomlet," contributing to said... More

McDonald’s Expands in China, Sun-Times Does Its Part

The Chicago paper engages in a bit of overseas reporting, of a sort.

The dateline instantly grabbed my eye: "BEIJING." So did the lede: "Much of McDonald's Corp.'s success in China -- 42... More

An Obsessive Press (Not the ISG) May Force Bush’s Hand On Iraq

The media frenzy surrounding the Iraq Study Group report is going to be a sight to behold.

While the interminable debate over some news organizations' decision to start calling the carnage in Iraq a "civil war" and... More

The Atlantic’s Top 100 List Is Lazy, Boring

The list of American icons that inhabits 21 pages of the magazine is dominated by dead white guys whose accomplishments are summed up in a single terse sentence.

The December issue of the Atlantic Monthly hit newsstands last week, confronting readers with a cover story befitting of Time... More

Prison Population Sets Record, Few Notice

Press coverage of the latest numbers on the state of America’s huge prison population has been minimal, but two reports have gone in the right direction.

The statistic is sobering: "A record 7 million people, or one in every 32 American adults, were behind bars, on... More

Scientific American’s Experiment in Wiki-Reporting

When the news of the oldest hominid fossil on record broke this fall, the magazine’s lineup was packed — so its editors tried an experiment they had been kicking around for months.

In September, a team of scientists, led by paleoanthropologist Zeresenay Alemseged, announced the results of a study on the 3.3-million-year-old... More

The Curse of the ‘Small Innaccuracy’

In many cases of purported “media bias,” the political has trumped the practical.

In a Slate article last week, author Diane McWhorter attempted to reclaim a taboo word that had never really been... More

The Definition Delay

In many ways the press has a duty to be the caretaker of our public discourse, and that means paying attention to the language used in that discourse.

In Sunday's New York Times, Edward Wong began an article about the state of Iraq by posing a popular question:... 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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