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The Magazine

January/February 2012

Articles

Feature

The Accidental Correspondent

When war came to his home, Ghaith Abdul-Ahad found his calling

Few Western correspondents have a background as unique as Ghaith Abdul-Ahad’s. A native of Iraq at the time of... More

Reports

The American Newsroom

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Feature

Friday Night Bytes

In Texas, high school football is the killer app

Brimming with swagger, the top-ranked Allen High Eagles burst from an inflatable tunnel, rip through a paper banner, and sprint... More

Feature

The Ring is Counted Out

Boxing’s duplicity devours an honest magazine

Let’s get two things straight. One, last September I was fired from The Ring, the venerable boxing magazine, along... More

Reports

What Scientist Shortage?

The Johnny-can’t-do-science myth damages US research

On July 28, 2011, Senator Chuck Schumer, a democrat from New York, opened a Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing on high-skill... More

Reports

Get Real

The unlikely marriage of documentary filmmakers and reality TV

Dionicio is a heroin addict who was terribly abused as a child and turned to drugs and crime when... More

Feature

The Times and the Jews

A vocal segment of American Jewry has long believed that the paper has been unfair to Israel. Here’s why—and why they’re wrong.

During the winter of 1974, Seymour Topping, the assistant managing editor of The New York Times, and his wife, Audrey,... More

Cover Story

A Narrowed Gaze

How the business press forgot the rest of us

Steve Lipin didn’t fit the profile of a transformative media figure when he took over the mergers-and-acquisitions beat for... More

Reports

The Girl Who Loved Journalists

Stieg Larsson’s posthumous gift to an embattled industry

For a profession whose entire raison d’être is communication, American journalists sure have done a lousy job of explaining... More

Departments

Currents

Florida Roots

A native son discusses environmental journalism

On any day, there are six novels hiding in the pages of The Miami Herald, says Carl Hiaasen, the... More

Language Corner

The Jury is in

On “jury-rigged” and “jerry-built” confusion

An article about a rundown neighborhood said that “most of the buildings are jerry-rigged structures of corrugated aluminum.” Another article... More

Currents

The Velvet Rope

Why do journalists still care about seeing their name in print?

If print media is truly in an advanced stage of decline, if journalism’s great hope is online, why do... More

Letters to the Editor

Notes From our Online Readers

Readers respond to Erika Fry’s “The Romenesko Saga”

In early November, CJR’s Erika Fry contacted the Poynter Institute with questions about new aggregation practices at its popular Romenesko+... More

Currents

Saturation Point

A plethora of news outlets doesn’t mean deeper coverage

Consider the situation in many local news markets—some coverage from a newspaper, some from television, maybe one online outlet making... More

Currents

Hard Numbers

Some stats and figures on the news industry

105 number of countries with freedom of information laws; The Associated Press sent each a request on terrorism arrests and... More

Editorial

In the Dark

The campaign to weaken campaign-finance disclosure laws

Journalists are big believers in the First Amendment; its legal force undergirds the fearless journalism that democracy requires. But... More

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Readers respond to our 50th anniversary issue

At Fifty Congratulations on the publication of your recent fiftieth anniversary issue (CJR, November/December 2011). It was truly the finest... More

Opening Shot

Opening Shot

Show us how the game is rigged

On November 26, 2011, The New York Times published an investigation of Ronald Lauder’s aggressive use of strategies available... More

Darts and Laurels

Darts and Laurels

Univision, The Miami Herald, and Marco Rubio, the GOP’s rising star

In December 1987, federal police in Miami made their biggest drug bust of the year. Dubbed “Operation Cobra,” agents arrested... More

Editorial

Executive Editor’s Note

Welcome Cyndi Stivers, our new editor in chief

This is the first issue of the Columbia Journalism Review’s second half century, and already you’ll find a significant change... More

Letters to the Editor

Corrections

Mistakes from our 50th anniversary issue

• We regret that in our fiftieth anniversary special masthead, a list of everyone who’s ever worked here, we garbled... More

Darts and Laurels

Darts and Laurels

Univision, The Miami Herald, and Marco Rubio, the GOP’s rising star

In July 2011, Univision, the nation’s leading Spanish-language network, reported that Florida Senator Marco Rubio’s brother-in-law, Orlando Cicilia, had been... More

Ideas & Reviews

Review

Brief Encounters

Reviewing anthologies on food in wartime reporting and the best of Wolcott Gibbs

Eating Mud Crabs in Kandahar: Stories of Food During Wartime by the World’s Leading Correspondents Edited by Matt McAllester |... More

The Research Report

The Algorithm Method

Making news decisions in a clickocracy

Journalists relate to their audiences differently in the age of online news, according to C. W. Anderson, in recent articles in... More

The Lower Case

The Lower Case

Headlines that editors probably wish they could take back

Elderly woman found using GPS—The Herald News (Fall River, MA) 10/8/11 SARGEANT: Victim donated to charity—The Journal News (White Plains,... More

Essay

When the 99% Had a Paper

The brief, wondrous life of PM

For months, the journalism world had been abuzz with the rumor that Ralph Ingersoll, the editorial genius behind Time,... More

Second Read

The Road Book

Before Ernie Pyle went to war, he wrote about America

In the spring of 1932, Ernie Pyle took over as the new managing editor of The Washington Daily News,... More

Review

The Tea Party Paradox

A democratic movement that is anti-democratic at heart

It remains one of the mysteries of our political age: How did a Wall Street-spawned meltdown and the worst recession... More

Stop trolling your readers - We know you’re only doing it for clicks

Des Moines Register prepares for a ‘very stressful’ newsroom restructuring - Editor Amalie Nash speaks on turnover, transformation, and a virtual reality adventure

PBS pulls ads from Harper’s Magazine after critical essay - Piece argues public broadcaster has fallen under the sway of political influence and outside money

Should all journalists be on Twitter? - Reasons to take up or forgo the 140-character platform

The Tennessean is borrowing reporters from other Gannett papers - Music columnist Peter Cooper is latest journalist to part ways with Nashville paper


How one reporter copes inside the ‘Ebola bubble’ (BuzzFeed)

“Bring gloves to give nurses you meet at clinics, even if you’re there for a story. Get small change to give to the kids who have been out of school for months and are selling ground nuts for pitiful sums on the side of road. Hell, give them candy. Violate all the principles of ostensibly good aid stewardship, because the good stewardship of the developed world didn’t get help here in time, and now everyone is dying around you.”

Fake news sites using Facebook to spread Ebola panic (The Verge)

“These sites claim to be satirical but lack even incompetent attempts at anything resembling humor”

How Ben Bradlee dealt with flacks (Washington Post)

“I would like to be sure that you understand that we trust our editors’ news judgement and that we distrust yours”

Ben Bradlee, 93 (WaPo)

“From the moment he took over The Post newsroom in 1965, Mr. Bradlee sought to create an important newspaper that would go far beyond the traditional model of a metropolitan daily”

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.