Monday, December 22, 2014. Last Update: Mon 12:30 PM EST

Monthly Archive

October 2010

Q&A: UFO Journalist Leslie Kean

Is the truth out there?

Leslie Kean has written an unusual book on an unusual subject: Unidentified flying objects. But this Halloween weekend, Kean would... More

Audit Notes: Stopping Wall Street, Kate Kelly, Labor Laws

Michael Lewis has a useful Bloomberg column detailing how some on Wall Street are getting around the financial-reform law's ban... More

CMJ: Curmudgeons of Music Journalism

A panel of rock critics talk about negativity in music reviewing

Once a year, CMJ (College Music Journal) puts on a weeklong “Music Marathon” in NYC. It’s sort of an urban... More

Reuters Thinks Big on the Housing Crisis

A “Marshall Plan” to bring parties together to fix the mortgage mess

If something good comes out of the whole foreclosure scandal, it's that the whole housing issue, which is a millstone... More

Reboot

An open letter to the FCC about a media policy for the digital age

Editor's Note: On June 9, 2011, the FCC's Future of Media Project released a report on the state of local... More

Yeah, Right

An analyst says the Web isn’t hurting newspapers, all evidence to the contrary

Justin Wolfers makes a good point at the Freakonomics blog: The Democrats will retain control of the House and the... More

Missing Number in TV vs. Web Ads Story

Los Angeles Times a puzzle piece short

Meg James at the Los Angeles Times has an interesting report today, titled “TV still the favored medium for political... More

Keeping Up With Chuck Todd

“I’m in a business where I’m not allowed to miss right now”

It’s 6:50 a.m. on a drizzling New York morning and Chuck Todd is standing behind a wall on the cluttered... More

Audit Notes: Matt Winkler Borrows a Megaphone, Foreclosures, Weil

You've built the biggest news organization in the business press. You have a wire service with hundreds of thousands of... More

BizWeek Reports a Bank of America Threat to Fannie

Which corporate-welfare recipient will end up holding the bag on toxic mortgages?

Bloomberg BusinessWeek's cover story this week has a very interesting piece of reporting that has flown under the radar. No... More

Time’s Missed Midterms Opportunity

Cover story rehash is fun, but…

Time’s splashy pre-election cover story is in many ways a doozy. Penned by David Von Drehle, “The Party Crashers”—a... More

Paint it Green

Why it’s been left to reporters to bring up environmental issues on the campaign trail

According to an article in the Los Angeles Times on Wednesday, “In much of the nation, ‘cap and trade’ has... More

On the Road with the Post

The voters finally meet the press

The Washington Post’s Philip Rucker is into day two of an interesting midterm series: Seven States in Seven Days. The... More

NPR: “What Democrats Developed, Republicans Have Mastered”

In a report earlier this week, NPR’s Peter Overby and Andrea Seabrook took a close look at some of the... More

Who gets (and controls) the “first crack”?

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs just tweeted about a new initiative to communicate with voters without a press filter,... More

“This Transparency Enables Electorate to Make Informed Decisions”

LA Times looks at how that’s worked out for “electorate”

Back in January, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the following, in the opinion of the court in Citizens United... More

Don’t Forget the Facts About NPR Funding

Federal funding accounts for less than readers may realize

Juan William’s abrupt firing from NPR and hiring by Fox News seems to have kicked up an old debate over... More

That Whole Journalism Thing Isn’t So Easy

Bloggers throw softballs and irrelevant questions at Obama

Bloggers rightly criticize the press for focusing on the trivial at the expense of the meaningful, process at the expense... More

Audit Notes: Regulatory Capture, Monster Quotes, WSJ on Medicare Waste

I'm glad The New York Times is taking such an interest in the potential conflicts of interest among the staff... More

Waiting for Substance

A high-profile documentary shortchanges the education debate

I sobbed alongside my graduate students as we watched the ending of Waiting for Superman, the heat-seeking documentary that has... More

Hiltzik Is Excellent on the CFTC Judges

The Los Angeles Times columnist digs into the case

Michael Hiltzik takes an excellent look at that awfully interesting Commodity Futures Trading Commission story where retiring judge George H.... More

WaPo’s Puzzling Stance on WikiLeaks

Despite paper’s editorial claim, there’s value in the logs

Yesterday, The Washington Post ran a troubling unsigned editorial essentially coming out against the release of 400,000 Iraq war documents... More

Lauer Cops it for “Dimwit” Question in California

Plays cheap with Whitman and Brown

Spectacular bit of political theater yesterday in California, if you like that sorta thing. And a certain big name TV... More

The Future of Journalism?

How a computer program generates a sports story

This fall, the Big Ten and the Southeastern Conference offered college football fans more original content than ever, posting preview... More

Visualizing the Iraq War Logs

How The New York Times and The Guardian did it

When WikiLeaks gave seven news organizations access to 400,000 previously classified military documents pertaining to the Iraq war, one of... More

Applebaum’s Stewart Rally Stretch

A weak cry for centrism

Still scratching my head after reading columnist Anne Applebaum’s op-ed in The Washington Post Monday. The piece is essentially an... More

Social Security in Perspective, Part II

A conversation with Alicia Munnell

Proposals to change the Social Security system are fast taking shape, and many of them call for substantial benefit cuts... More

The Press Mostly Misses the Inspector General’s HAMP Report

We turn to the blogs, yet again, to find out what we’re missing

The special inspector general of the TARP, Neil Barofsky, released a blistering report yesterday, including pointed criticism of Treasury's AIG... More

Hire Education

According to an article posted by Richard Vedder on the Chronicle of Higher Education’s blog, “there are 5,057 janitors in... More

Q & A: War Photographer Moises Saman

“If you do this long enough, you will eventually find yourself in a bad situation”

Freelance photographer Moises Saman’s pictures from Iraq made the cover of The New York Times both days last weekend. Taken... More

The Dalai Lama’s Star Turn

How did the Dalai Lama prepare his mind for the task this past weekend of "guest-editing" the Toronto Star's Sunday... More

What Are You Wearing?

Describe your journalism-themed Halloween costume

We all know journalism’s a scary business and we journalists are scary people. Sunday’s your chance to prove it. What... More

Leave It to the WSJ Op-Ed Page…

To print a call for the return of predatory overdraft lending and the interchange racket

The Wall Street Journal runs a column today bemoaning the mortal wounding of the overdraft charge and calling for its... More

Audit Notes: Fraud Field Day, Nation on Countrywide, WSJ Win

A Florida Times-Union investigation finds that the rampant foreclosure fraud in Florida even extends to court summonses. Even the... More

The $50 Million-a-Year Club Booms (UPDATED)

$10 million a week while the median earner’s wage falls to $505 a week

UPDATE: Johnston reports that the Social Security Administration now says its data were wrong and it has updated the numbers,... More

CNN Stoops to Tabloid Nonsense in Assange Interview

CNN reporter Atika Shubert sat down for an interview with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange this weekend, and it did not... More

Politico, NYT on “Impact of Outside Money”

Political force, political “excuse”

At Politico today, you can read about "how much Democrats want to play up the impact of outside money, much... More

A WikiLeaks Question for Journalists from Robert Fisk

Do document dumps put journo jobs in danger?

The Iraq War Logs don’t seem to have hit here as hard as their much smaller predecessor—WikiLeaks fatigue? Friday... More

The Sims: Jon Stewart Rally Edition

Wow. Taiwan’s NMA.tv is at it again, tackling the upcoming Jon Stewart rally in spectacular Sims-like animated fashion. As Mediaite... More

A Fact Check Box on Every Page

The Register Citizen continues its digital transformation

The Register Citizen is an 8,000-circulation paper serving Litchfield County, Conn. It’s owned by the Journal Register Company, which is... More

Boo!

Scary words

Halloween is next week, and thousands of people are “scarifying” their houses in anticipation of the hordes of trick-or-treating children.... More

Social Security in the Heartland: Jennifer Putman

What Social Security means to real people

This is the fifth of a series of posts that discuss how possible changes in Social Security will affect the... More

“My photographer just got shot, so I’m Skyping…”

It's tempting to view the below spoof video, where the staff of Dallas Fox affiliate KDFW goofs around on social... More

Greenwald Gets It on WikiLeaks Coverage

Salon media critic Glenn Greenwald hammers at a point we mentioned in our first read of the WikiLeaks coverage on... More

WaPo Follows TARP Money Back to Politicians

The Washington Post does a good job of keeping an eye on bailed-out companies' campaign donations with this story yesterday.... More

Times’s Act Two Profile of Assange

A revealing follow-up to The New Yorker

Raffi Khatchadourian’s profile of Julian Assange for The New Yorker back in June—before the Afghanistan and Iraq war logs dumps—is... More

A Bloomberg Shaggy Dog FOIA story

Bloomberg's Bob Ivry has an update on a FOIA request lauched by his late colleague Mark Pittman. The portrayal of... More

A Primer on Early WikiLeaks Coverage

WikiLeaks calls the coordinated media coverage “an extraordinary moment in journalism”

Around 5 p.m. on Friday, the online secret-sharing site WikiLeaks released almost 400,000 previously classified U.S. military documents pertaining to... More

Audit Notes: Unreasonable Fees, Goldman Looks Away, iPad Mag Sales

Los Angeles Times columnist David Lazarus puts the Bank of America financial-reform charge in perspective. The too-big-to-fail bank took a... More

U.S. Corporate Interest and the Chamber of Secrets

The New York Times has a front page story today about some sizable corporate donations to the U.S. Chamber of... More

What to Do When Commenters Attack?

On the occasion of the Portland Press Herald debacle (about which more here), Poynter’s Damon Kiesow has a great roundup... More

How to Use ProPublica’s “Dollars for Docs” Database

Tips for reporters and editors

Investigative innovator ProPublica launched a new project this week, a national database of doctors and the money they have received... More

High Times

Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez had an interesting journalist-as-subject piece in that paper on Wednesday—an enviable assignment for some... More

An NYT Chamber of Commerce Investigation Outs Big Donors

No need to stretch for a story here.

Now this is how you report on the Chamber of Commerce and secret donors. The New York Times this morning... More

Audit Notes: Hamster Madness, Times’s Tough Reporting, Fumes

A wag sends this along with the note: "Newest use of WSJ reporting firepower." It's The Wall Street Journal liveblogging... More

Bill Black, Media Critic

And a good one, at that.

Now here's a lede The Audit can get behind: If it wasn’t already blindingly obvious that pervasive fraud was at... More

Rent Is Too Damn High: The Website

The world met Jimmy McMillan Monday night at the New York gubernatorial debate—he of the simple message and the complex... More

Red, White, and Blue, but Not Green

Energy and environment issues lacking in mid-term election coverage

Remember the 2008 presidential campaign, when candidates and voters alike couldn’t seem to get enough of energy and climate issues... More

AP’s Sequera Wins Prize for Chile Exclusives

Among the thousand-plus journalists who descended on Chile’s “Camp Hope” for the miners’ rescue were thirty-three journalists from the Associated... More

NPR’s Williams Mistake

In the kind of gut-reaction age in which Octavia Nasr and Rick Sanchez were given the boot for speaking... More

Don’t Be Evil, Google

Bloomberg finds the tech giant is tops at using sketchy schemes to avoid taxes.

Bloomberg has a superb story out today exposing how tech giants, and particularly Google, are exploiting loopholes to avoid paying... More

Tracking a Meme

Reality vs. spin in the war in Afghanistan

If you opened the New York Times yesterday, you probably saw Carlotta Gall’s big story on the military offensive in... More

A Laurel for Dusting off Fiorina’s Skeletons

Los Angeles Times and others’ good work

California’s press may be shrinking, but it has done some great work this election cycle, adroitly guiding voters through a... More

Launch Pad: Remapping Debate

Why we’re taking in some articles from major outlets for “story repair”

CJR’s “Launch Pad” feature invites new media publishers to blog about their experiences on the news frontier. Craig Gurian’s previous... More

The Plot Thickens at the CFTC

A judge accuses another judge of improprieties. But there’s more to the story.

Say what? The Washington Post has a brief story reporting that one of two administrative judges at the Commodity Futures... More

The Landscape of the Foreclosure Scandal

Good reporting finds plenty of nondelinquent borrowers caught in a nightmare

So what does it look like when the foreclosure fraud machine rolls over homeowners who aren't even in default? Remember... More

Playing “Whac-A-Mole” With Campaign Finance Disclosure

But, where’s the mallet?

One of my favorite descriptions of the rapid appearance of ever more outside groups spending (who-knows-whose) money this election season... More

Community News: “Where’s the Money?”

Medill’s series on business models for news sites

Students at Northwestern University’s Medill School have been following up on last month’s Block by Block Community News Summit with... More

Big Politico Piece Misses Key Ingredient

Again (and again, and again), it’s the economy

Politico’s big lead story today on Barack Obama’s struggle to win the white working-class vote is an interesting read with... More

Hasta la Vista, Arnie

Three Sacramento journalists reflect on the Golden State governor

California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s term ends in January 2011. As the national and local press fixates on who will replace... More

Francesa Takes on Fox

Yesterday, an epic sports reporter took the role of a legitimate local journalist, when Mike Francesa, of WFAN, interviewed Fox... More

Health Care and the Massachusetts Governor’s Race

Kudos to WBUR

Through the long reform debate, health care and Massachusetts went together like love and marriage—or so the media told us.... More

A Prince Beyond Reproach

Kuwait’s emir should build on his country’s considerable press freedom and decriminalize criticism in his direction

KUWAIT CITY—Emir Sabah al-Ahmed al-Jaber al-Sabah’s small Arab nation isn’t generally known as the most open society. Homosexuality is illegal.... More

Colvin and Fortune’s Big Business Baloney

Swashbuckling titans of industry “paralyzed” by the threat of regulation

Fortune again. This time it's Geoff Colvin, passing along the Chamber of Commerce line that "Uncertain of future regulation, businesses... More

Political Reporting Deep Thought of the Day

Do "the gloves" ever not "come off" during a political debate or in the weeks just before an election? (And... More

The Guardian Makes Budget Cuts Fun

Well, not really. But a new online tool from The Guardian makes it fun to learn just how hard it... More

Audit Notes: Feds Sniff Around, Hiltzik on Irani, Robosigners Plus

The Washington Post scoops that the feds have opened up a criminal investigation into the foreclosure scandal, "examining whether financial... More

Fortune Writer Steps Up for the Banks

Picking apart an apology for the foreclosure scandal

I criticized some journalists the other day for perpetuating the silly bank spin that the foreclosure fraud scandal is a... More

Outdated Promotional Material, Volume One

Found in the office this afternoon, circa (I think) 2000/2001: I guess "CJR: Ladder to Nowhere" doesn't have the same... More

The Strange Case of Kachingle v. The NYT

In which the Times orders the micropayment site to cease and desist

Last month I wrote a piece about Kachingle, a micropayment service for news websites that launched last year; although some... More

No Comment

Do candidates have to talk to reporters?

Slate’s media man Jack Shafer goes against the grain in a column published yesterday, arguing that it isn’t necessarily bad... More

Michelle and Barack: Out of Fashion

You know president Obama’s approval numbers are in a bad way when the fashion press turns on him. Trade mag... More

House Hunters: Haiti Edition

On the problem of housing in Haiti, from the Associated Press's Jonathan M. Katz (the only full-time American news correspondent... More

Overly Possessive

Why the lack of an apostrophe sometimes isn’t wrong

A student recently asked why she had been corrected when she wrote “The teacher’s union voted to strike.” That’s easy:... More

Q & A: Paul Bradshaw, Founder of Help Me Investigate

Collaborative investigations at the local level

Paul Bradshaw is an investigative journalist and author based in Birmingham, U.K., who teaches online journalism at Birmingham City University... More

If By “Debate Prep” You Mean Getting A Mani-Pedi

The New York governor’s race is not just Paladino v. Paladino. Or, even, Paladino v. Cuomo. In fact, there are... More

The Journal Hits Facebook Again on Privacy

The Wall Street Journal continues its excellent privacy series and unleashes another PR headache for Facebook, which is allowing third-party... More

Hope Deferred

Will Obama save American liberalism—or bury it?

The Mendacity of Hope: Barack Obama and the Betrayal of American Liberalism | By Roger Hodge | Harper | 272... More

Celebs Are Loud, But Hard News Pays

Perfect Market, a marketing firm for publishers, launched its Vault Index today, revealing the most “valuable” topics in online news... More

WaPo Finds (Two) Concerned Taxpayers of America

Day-after disclosure reports report

Those groups with the who'd-argue-with-that?-sounding names spending big money this election season? The Washington Post took a look at one... More

CBS Story Short but Not So Sweet

Skimpy info in the network’s take on retirement age

I am not quite sure what point CBS Evening News had in mind a few days ago when it aired... More

WaPo’s backward memo on Twitter

TBD reported Friday that WaPo managing editor Raju Narisetti sent out a memo last week calling on users of the... More

The Editor, the Candidate, and the Cuffs

Joe Miller’s extreme “no comment”

First, Sharron “earned media” Angle refused to do any interviews in which she could not hawk her website—a tactic that... More

CJR Rewind: The Lee Abrams Experience

How to hear the man who would transform Tribune

On Friday, October 15, Tribune Company chief innovation officer Lee Abrams resigned after being suspended for forwarding an inappropriate e-mail... More

Audit Notes: The Clayton Angle, NYT Savvy, AP on Robosigners

Felix Salmon and William D. Cohan pound on the Clayton Holdings story, which popped up again last month at a... More

The NYT On the Case That Started It All

Excellent story conception and execution on GMAC’s bungled foreclosure

The New York Times has a great angle on the foreclosure scandal: Go back to the homeowner that broke it... More

TBD and the Accuracy Boast

The aftermath of the typo heard ‘round the world

It's a rare and wonderful thing to see a news organization criticized for making too big of a deal about... More

This Headline May Be A Work of Art

A review of “The Last Newspaper” exhibit at The New Museum

The New Museum’s latest exhibit “The Last Newspaper” is a misnomer, a slightly disjointed jumble of artworks that appropriate newsprint... More

Q&A: Outgoing Harper’s Washington Editor Ken Silverstein

“I never really felt comfortable as part of the blogosphere.”

Ken Silverstein left his post as Washington editor of Harper's late last month after four-and-a-half years, and he left with... More

Audit Notes: Little Or a Lot, WSJ Hype Fail, Access Problem

The Washington Independent's Annie Lowrey calls bull on Jamie Dimon: On the J.P. Morgan Chase earnings call, Dimon promised that... More

Why Care About the Banks’ Foreclosure Scandal?

The blame-the-borrowers spin has begun

The pushback on the foreclosure scandal has already begun along predictable lines and amongst the usual suspects. It's blame the... More

The AP Goes “Platform-Neutral”

A memo went out today from Tom Kent, deputy managing editor for standards and production at the Associated Press, to... More

The FT Gets Into the Game on Foreclosures

The Financial Times has a good piece of reporting on page one of today's paper that advances the ball on... More

Launch Pad: Remapping Debate

One down, we hope many more to go

CJR's "Launch Pad" feature invites new media publishers to blog about their experiences on the news frontier. Craig Gurian's previous... More

Q&A: Jeopardy-Winning Reporter Kara Spak

Forget Pulitzers. Late last month Chicago Sun-Times reporter Kara Spak nabbed a rarer prize: she won $85,401 on Jeopardy. Spak... More

A Defense of Jonathan Capehart

Jarrett criticism is a distraction

White House aide Valerie Jarrett copped some serious flak yesterday about her use of the term “lifestyle choice” in reference... More

A Laurel to the Seattle Times

For investigating the state’s adult care homes

We’ve become accustomed to newspaper exposes of nursing homes. But other places that house the frail elderly are another matter.... More

Q&A: New York Times Investigative Reporter Mike McIntire

“It’s very, very difficult to crack that veneer of secrecy”

Mike McIntire joined the New York Times’s national investigative desk during the 2008 presidential campaign. He has also covered City... More

Audit Notes: Foreclosure Mess, Wall Street, Dummies

The New York Observer's Max Abelson has done some of the better reporting on How Wall Street Thinks. It's "let... More

Times Obama Mash-Up

Early magazine piece plays on old themes

The New York Times today continued the rather odd practice of dumping its big weekend magazine story online on a... More

What About Lending Fraud?

The foreclosure scandal offers the press a chance to revisit an undercovered story

Bloomberg News does what I wish more of the press would do when reporting this foreclosure scandal story: Ask what... More

Chilean Mine Coverage: Too Much is Not Enough?

The appearance of the following chyron marks the moment last night (it was 9:21 pm EST) when I ceased keeping... More

Instapaper’s Fix for Your Unhealthy Media Diet

Instapaper is an e-reading app that’s gotten a lot of press lately for the way it strips online content of... More

Audit Notes: Hamster Wheel: Chile; Carney, Ritholtz on the Foreclosure Scandal

The Wall Street Journal just bragged (I think) on Twitter that "We have three reporters at the San Jose mine... More

When The Subject of Your Story Can’t Hear, Speak, Read, Write, or Sign

A fascinating behind-the-story story: Voice of San Diego reporter Adrian Florido set out to find a family, he writes, "whose... More

Data Visualization for Beginners

Notes from Geoff McGhee’s Knight Fellowship report

Thanks to Mark Coddington and his weekly roundup on Nieman Lab for linking to this beautiful video series, “Journalism in... More

Media Circus at the Chilean Mine

What are some dos and don’ts for the scrum?

The story of 33 men trapped underground in a mine in Chile has captivated the entire world, for good reason:... More

A Cringe-worthy Correction

A blog post by Amanda Hess on TBD the other day included a very unfortunate typo on a story about... More

Kicking Cable News (When It’s Down Leaning)

Jon Stewart last night leaned a little on MSNBC's recently announced, high-profile "Lean Forward" promotional campaign (as well as the... More

The Press Bats Down Obama’s Chamber Smears

Almost certainly a bogus scandal on foreign money in the campaign

It looks like the Democrats and Obama are trying to ape part of the campaign playbook perfected by Republicans: the... More

The American Public: “A Group Worth Congress’s Time?”

From The Onion (or, is it?): Citing a desire to gain influence in Washington, the American people confirmed Friday that... More

Google’s Free Election Tools

More embeddable maps and forums for news sites this November

In a previous post I highlighted Google’s map of political poll results and invited news sites everywhere to get it... More

A “Gate” Worthy of the Name—”ForeclosureGate”

The spectacle of the nation’s biggest banks—Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase & Co, GMAC—halting foreclosures because of evidence of mass-scale... More

Loan Ranger

Money can change a noun to a verb

The reporter seemingly couldn’t make up his mind. In an article about a mayor’s financial problem, the reporter used a... More

Another CJR Town Hall in the Badger State

Wisconsinites sound off about health reform and Social Security

Can I talk to you about health reform, I asked twenty-eight-year-old Michelle Zywicki, who was working at a computer in... More

Two Papers, Two Candidates, Two Styles

LAT and NYT on Whitman and Fiorina

A Los Angeles Times story today on the different political strategies of Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina will sound familiar... More

Live From Chile: “This Media Event”

A taste, via the New York Times, of what's to come this week (emphasis mine): Such is life in Camp... More

NYT Credits WNYC and Newsday Reporters’ Tweets

From the 13th of 16 paragraphs in the New York Times piece today, "[Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Carl] Paladino Laces Speech... More

Audit Notes: U6 Hits 17.1 Percent, Facebook, “Inside Job”

Unemployment seems bad enough when you look at the headlines talking about 9.6 percent. But here's a headline at the... More

The Journal Trails Badly on the Foreclosure Scandal

Beaten by smaller business staffs and a blogger

So we've got a nationwide scandal in the still-crippled industry that caused the crisis in the first place—a scandal with... More

Groupon’s Style Guide to Humor Writing

Groupon is a deal-of-the-day subscription service that’s been getting attention for its power to sell anything from yoga classes to... More

On Face Time and Free Labor

How two local news sites train and retain volunteer contributors

As I’ve written in previous posts about last month’s Block by Block Community News Summit, many local news publishers were... More

I Can Haz Media Fails?

ProbablyBadNews.com becomes part of the FAIL Blog

Earlier this week I directed my web browser to ProbablyBadNews.com, the website launched by the Cheezburger Network, those able purveyors... More

The Web Grows Wider

Gates Foundation partnerships with the Guardian and ABC News further complicate global health coverage

Editor’s Note: This is the second in a two-part series about the implications of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s... More

The Foreclosure Scandal Begins to Hit Home

The possible ramifications are enormous

If you still doubt that the burgeoning foreclosure scandal is going to have nasty consequences for the economy and the... More

How Ray Suarez Really Caught the Global Health Bug

The Gates Foundation, global health, and the media

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on the author’s personal blog in July. With a few updates, we are... More

A Harsh Verdict on Obama’s BP Spill Response

The big papers stuff news today that an Obama-appointed commission on the BP oil spill is pretty scathing on the... More

Will 501(c) Groups Remain a “Very Safe Place to Play?”

Undisclosed campaign cash and a “regulatory netherworld”

It's been a newsy week for American Crossroads, the big-spending 527 group, and Crossroads GPS, its big-spending 501(c)(4) off-shoot. (The... More

Audit Notes: Foreclosure Scandal, Manufacturers’ Outlook, News of the World

The foreclosure scandal continues to break wide open. Several banks have halted foreclosures as clear evidence of fraud has emerged... More

FT Fronts a Thin Story on Manufacturing Suppliers

A dog-bites-man story posing as a trend piece fails at both

Here's one of those thin Financial Times stories that doesn't make much sense. Yesterday it put this story on page... More

Is Romneycare a Success or a Failure?

Don’t ask Politico

If you're looking for a news story that exemplifies what so many people find both engaging and infuriating about Politico,... More

Not Watching Sacramento

The shrinking statehouse press corps

When Kimberly Kindy joined the Orange County Register’s Sacramento bureau twelve years ago, she had an itch to do some... More

Obama/Clinton 2012?

The Woodward rumor and the Post’s smart pushback

Note to political reporters and pundits: a rumor is a rumor, even if it’s Bob Woodward spreading it. The rumor... More

The New York Times Unloads on Tribune’s Zell Hell

David Carr and The New York Times have a fascinating and sordid story about Sam Zell's tenure as owner of... More

Launch Pad: Remapping Debate

Less than one week to go

CJR’s new “Launch Pad” feature invites new media publishers to blog about their experiences on the news frontier. Craig Gurian’s... More

We Met on the “Divorce Vertical”

Next month, The Huffington Post will launch a "divorce vertical" (that is, a section) headed up by Nora Ephron and... More

Audit Notes: Clayton Bull, Bloomberg News, Cohan and Consumers

Shahien Nasiripour continues to bird dog the Clayton Holdings story, reporting today that, under pressure from the folks on Wall... More

Advice on Howard Kurtz’s Replacement

Time for a critic

The parlor game is already underway, with lists of potential replacements being drawn up for Howard Kurtz, who will be... More

Howard Kurtz is Beast-Bound! (Twitter Reax)

Howard Kurtz is leaving the Washington Post for the Daily Beast, where he will be DC bureau chief. "GOING DIGITAL,"... More

A “Virtual Neighborhood Watch”

The L.A.Times’s new interactive crime map

One of the more lively debates at last month’s Block by Block Community News Summit concerned publications’ treatment of crime... More

Unintended Consequence Number 38

The hospital big boys get bigger, too

Over at Kaiser Health News, staff writer Julie Appleby produced an illuminating story about ongoing consolidation among hospitals and physician... More

Unintended Consequences

What the press should have known about health reform

During the health reform debate, the Obama administration stuck to its mantra—the law would bring competition to health care, which... More

The Separation of Church and Journalism

Last Tuesday, The New York Times ran an article headlined “Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans.” In the opening paragraph,... More

The Rick Sanchez Question

Was CNN right to fire Sanchez?

Blustery CNN host Rick Sanchez was fired last Friday after comments he made the day before on Pete Dominick’s satellite... More

Reuters Investigates the Fed’s Selective Leaks

Guess who gets them?

This Reuters investigation of the Federal Reserve deserves a much wider airing than it's gotten. The wire reports that the... More

Parker/Spitzer: Countdown to Divorce

Confession: I probably should have been glued to CNN last night for the debut of the channel's new rom-com talking-heads... More

The Free Trade Backlash

By three to one in a WSJ/NBC News poll, Americans say free trade hurts the country

The Wall Street Journal zooms in on a poll result from last week: That far more Americans now oppose "free... More

Life Insurance as Tax Dodge for the Rich

The Wall Street Journal on a “widows and orphans” tax break past its prime

The Wall Street Journal is excellent today in a page-one story on how the life-insurance industry has evolved into something... More

Q&A: Miles O’Brien, Back in Action

Ex-CNN correspondent talks about the NewsHour’s new Science News Unit

Bucking the trend in science journalism, the PBS NewsHour announced last Tuesday that it has created a new Science News... More

Life “When the Organ that Turns a Body into a Person is Damaged”

From The Washington Post's story today on traumatic brain injury, with which 180,000 military service members have been diagnosed since... More

Not the Nightly News

New York’s cable news piece shows cable’s given up on news

There seems to be an uptick in big-magazine-takes-on-the-cable-TV-phenom stories lately, and Gabriel Sherman’s New York piece today, “Chasing Fox,” is... More

NYT Noses Around, Still Knows Nothing

Whose $400,000 has the Coalition to Protect Seniors spent this election season?

For anyone who hasn't yet focused on the "shadowy army" of nonprofits spending record-breaking sums influencing the midterm elections, the... More

Murdoch’s Threat to Democracy

Direct influence via the power of the purse—here and in the UK

Politico astutely pointed out the other day that Fox News now employs four of the leading Republican presidential candidates: Sarah... More

Sweat Equity and Community Engagement

Lessons from J-Lab’s report on local news startups

J-Lab, the Institute for Interactive Journalism at American University, has given seed funding to 55 community news startups (with support... More

Who, I?

When personal pronouns don’t get along

If you go to Language Corner’s Facebook page (and while you’re there, you may as well “like” it), you’ll see... More

Make Like Boston.com and Split

A roundup of opinion on the Globe’s announcement

The Boston Globe announced on Thursday that it will split its web content into two separate entities: Boston.com will remain... More

The Journal Misleads on McDonald’s and Obamacare

And it channels the wealthy-but-stingy employer’s cries of poverty

The Wall Street Journal caused something of a to-do yesterday with its front-page story reporting that McDonald's might drop its... More

Seeing FOX for What It Is

News Corp donations mandate reevaluating the network’s role

Will this week mark the beginning of a new phase in the way that Fox News is perceived by the... More

Gawker Ranks the Rumor Mills

Accuracy and credibility in celebrity journalism

Contrary to what you may have read, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are still together. John Mayer and Jennifer Anniston... More

A CJR Town Hall in the Badger State

Wisconsinites sound off about Russ Feingold

In this land of beer, brats, and the Packers, it is the autumn of discontent. Anger, distrust, apprehension, disaffection—these are... More

The Times Channels the Oil Lobby on Cuba

The top story in The New York Times yesterday carried a bit of water for the oil and gas lobby.... More

Online Video: Immediate, Powerful, Elemental

Chris Anderson’s latest TED talk

TED Conference curator Chris Anderson gave his own TED talk in July, just released in September, entitled “How web video... More

Reporters fail to capture implications of pension provision - A ‘big shift’ tucked into the spending bill goes under-examined

The New Republic: A public trust or a business? - How Chris Hughes turned a 100-year-old publication into a “product”

Serial creators don’t know what will happen to Adnan Syed - New developments in his legal case suggest that the outcome is wide open

FOIA reform dies while the press looked the other way - RIP Improvement Act of 2014

The problem with sharing uncredited photos - “Just because you put something on the internet does not give people the right to steal it”


The traffic lure of outrage (Slate)

“I didn’t become a journalist to peddle indignation on Facebook. But it sells—the page views don’t lie.”

NBC news producer’s sons were in the besieged school in Peshawar (NBCnews.com)

“I remained silent and didn’t know what to say — I know how such attacks on schools usually end”

Hero mom calls into CSPAN to berate her arguing pundit sons (WaPo)

“This was not planned. She called in on the normal line.”

Dick Cheney doesn’t want to call it torture but the media doesn’t have to follow (Vox)

“People deserve to know that the American government (proudly!) did things that in any other context are called torture”

Bloggingheads

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

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Who Owns What

The Business of Digital Journalism

A report from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism

Study Guides

Questions and exercises for journalism students.