Friday, September 19, 2014. Last Update: Fri 4:26 PM EST

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Articles by Brendan Nyhan | Email the Author

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Political science and journalism: BFFs?

How academics can help improve media coverage of politics

This is my last post for CJR's United States Project--starting this month, I will instead serve as a contributor to... More

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Trial heat polls: All heat, no light

They generate plenty of stories, but it’s way too early for polls to predict anything about 2016

We're still almost three years away from November 2016, but political journalists seem to want to fast-forward past the ongoing... More

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Putting the bundle back together?

The challenge for new journalism models: replacing the civic benefits of the newspaper

It seems like ambitious new journalism projects are everywhere these days. The announcement that former New York Times editor Bill... More

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Will reporters miss the real story on the State of the Union again?

The policy consequences are far more important than the speech’s political effects

The myth of the bully pulpit runs deep in the DNA of political journalists, so it's no surprise that the... More

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What Ezra Klein and Nate Silver can learn from Grantland about analytical journalism

The sports site blends basic multimedia with data smarts. Can the model work for politics?

We're in a boom time for analytical Web journalism that uses data to make politics and policy compelling to readers.... More

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Bridge-gate fever!

Covering the Christie scandal and its repercussions in the invisible primary

Would Chris Christie's administration block traffic lanes from Fort Lee, NJ, onto the George Washington Bridge to retaliate against its... More

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Political centrism is not objectivity

How the media wrongly treats deficit reduction as non-ideological

How should the United States choose among the difficult tradeoffs it faces in setting the federal budget? There's no one... More

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Stories versus evidence on Obama’s fate

The never-ending cycle of presidential doom and recovery narratives

Journalists rightly seek to tell compelling stories, which can bring abstract or dry topics to life, but the need to... More

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Pizza parties, backroom drinks won’t fix DC

A Boston Globe story undercuts an unpersuasive theory

Why can't members of Congress just get along? Critics of polarization often suggest that a key reason for the decline... More

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What 60 Minutes can learn from Inside Edition

Media organizations need to own their mistakes. Here’s how they can do better

The most controversial media error in recent months came in a 60 Minutes report by Lara Logan about the attack... More

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The extrapolation fallacy

Don’t believe the hype about worst-case scenarios in Obamacare coverage

Is the sky falling for Obamacare? You might think so from reading the press these days. On Monday, National Journal... More

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Factchecking goes local in New York

The founding editor of TruePolitics talks about the soon-to-launch site

With the trio of PolitiFact, Factcheck.org, and The Washington Post's Fact Checker blog now well-established, the factchecking space might seem... More

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The failure to factcheck ‘You can keep it’

How the media missed on coverage of Obama’s implausible healthcare promises

With the government shutdown over, the political media is devoting more attention to problems with the Obamacare rollout--most glaringly, the... More

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Building a better correction

Three lessons from new research on how to counter misinformation

Misperceptions, like zombies, are difficult to kill. A recent Kaiser Health Tracking Poll, for instance, found that the "death panel"... More

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Pick on someone your own size!

Why factcheckers should target lower-level politicians

Factcheckers often struggle to change the minds of skeptical voters. But what effect do they have on the politicians under... More

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The roots of the shutdown fight

Why reporters should go local in covering the House GOP

Washington is in full blame-game mode as the federal government moves into shutdown this morning, including facile attributions of blame... More

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It’s the second term, stupid!

Why journalists shouldn’t blame all of Obama’s problems on Syria

The media love simple narratives based on dramatic events, so it's no surprise that many journalists have suggested that President... More

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When coverage gets ahead of the facts

The consequences of covering dubious scandals and conspiracy theories

We often speculate about how media coverage could make people cynical about politics and government. But new political science research... More

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Get off the bus!

Why access-based campaign coverage is a dead end

CNN's Peter Hamby has written a must-read retrospective on coverage of the 2012 Romney campaign. His report, "Did Twitter Kill... More

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Shifting the goalposts on the IRS scandal

A critic tries to reinterpret the controversy

The Weekly Standard's Mark Hemingway objected Friday to my latest CJR post in a goalpost-shifting effort titled, "The Campaign to... More

Stop using ‘Brooklyn’ to mean hipster neighborhoods - Elite-oriented outlets typically only cover the borough’s most affluent, Manhattan-adjacent neighborhoods

The Reporters Committee is about to start suing people to help journalists - Katie Townsend joins the organization as its first litigation director

How a Nebraska newspaper kicked off a major prison sentencing scandal - The Omaha World-Herald found that hundreds of inmates were being released early

On media freedom, United Nations plays by its own rules - Months of international crises raises the stakes for reporting on the UN, but investigative journalists remain without a right to information

Keep calm and write a headline worth reading - Ease up on the exaggerations because someday you may need those explosive adjectives when a truly big story lands


Adviser of high school paper that refused to use ‘Redskins’ suspended (Student Press Law Center)

“Amid a months-long battle with administrators for editorial control … the Playwickian’s faculty adviser was suspended for two days this week”

Apple’s ‘warrant canary’ disappears (GigaOm)

Apple included language in its first Transparency Report to say that it had not been subject to a Section 215 Patriot Act request. That language is now gone.

Trend Piece (New Yorker)

Buzzword, buzzword, buzzword. Isn’t the buzzword on your mind now? Perhaps it is on other people’s minds? Read on or you’ll be clueless, dated, and without any friends in the world. Buzzword again!

This Is How Joanna Coles Changed Cosmo (Refinery29)

The British reporter-turned-editor has made good on her promises to bring politics to the magazine, win some very big-deal journalism awards, and secure the most interesting exclusive interviews

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.