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Articles by Curtis Brainard | Email the Author

Missing the Bottom Line

Celebrity status and race distract from campaign ads’ real message: energy and the economy

This week, campaign trail chatter has been all about ads—John McCain's ads, and their accuracy, to be specific. On Monday,... More

“Whiplash” Climate Journalism

Revkin investigates the media’s tendency to ricochet from one global-warming study to another

Anybody who has been following Andrew Revkin's New York Times blog, Dot Earth, closely may have already heard of "whiplash"... More

Can GM Crops Solve the Food Crisis?

UCS says journalists overstate potential for higher yields

With global food prices up eighty-three percent over the last three years, world leaders are looking for any means available... More

The Shallow Coverage of Candidates’ Energy Policies

Reporters must use events, not ads, to leverage information

Last week, energy issues made their way back to the forefront of presidential campaign coverage with a pair of "dueling... More

How Much Are You Worth?

The AP gets the scoop on the EPA’s decision to devalue a “statistical life”

Last month, I wrote a column about the challenges journalists face in covering the ethical decisions that affect humanity's response... More

All Grown Up!

Over at Grist, the popular online environment magazine, David Roberts has a spot-on takedown of a recent Newsweek column by... More

The Prediction Predicament

The risks in reporting long-range weather forecasts

New York Times environment reporter Andrew Revkin posted an interesting bit of media criticism (or perhaps context) on his Dot... More

Consider the “Carbon Footprint”

Thinking through a metaphor

In the December/November issue of Columbia Journalism Review's magazine, our managing editor, Brent Cunningham, made the case for a rhetoric... More

Beyond Energy Stump Speeches

Two articles retake control of the media spotlight

In a series of speeches since the beginning of May, Senator John McCain has effectively grabbed control of the media... More

The Volatile Coverage of Phthalates

Scare tactics prevent reporters from following more useful angles

Anybody that has bought one of the cheap, PVC (polyvinyl chloride) plastic shower curtains, which are nearly ubiquitous in American... More

Reuters connects mortgage crisis to environment

The U.S. mortgage crisis has been a staple of American news budgets since it began last fall and reporters have... More

Covering Candidates’ Medical Records

Larry Altman talks about access and interest

Three weeks ago, John McCain, who would be the oldest president in history if elected, released 1,173 pages of his... More

Turning Point: Energy

Finally, real differences between the candidates for the press to explore

This is part four of a series on the start of the 2008 presidential election’s general campaign. Links to the... More

Environmental Photographer of the Year

The Times of London has an intriguing photo slideshow on its Web site right now headlined, "Environmental Photographer of the... More

Credit Where Credit is Due

Yesterday, The Scientific Activist blog (part of the ScienceBlogs.com community) carried a keen-eyed piece of media criticism, turning the rating... More

Climate, Ethics, and the News

The role of morality in global warming coverage

Last week, I attended a dinner with twenty-eight other reporters where the evening's speaker argued that the media have inadequately... More

Covering Climate

Journalists and scientists discuss the media’s treatment of global warming

Earlier this month, I moderated a panel at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism about the press coverage of... More

Defining Green Jobs

A couple weeks ago, Observatory freelancer Russ Juskalian wrote an excellent column about the proliferation of the term "green-collar jobs"... More

Daylight on Climate

Mac gives the press room to work

It's nice how the situation changes so quickly. Well, maybe not changes, but at least presents the opportunity for change.... More

Covering Climate

Journalists and scientists discuss the media’s treatment of global warming

Earlier this month, I moderated a panel at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism about the press coverage of... 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.