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The Magazine

September/October 2011

Articles

Reports

The Long Tale

New homes for stories that fall between a book and an article

When author Jon Krakauer started looking into the altruistic claims of his former friend, the best-selling author of Three... More

Feature

Transparency Watch: A Closed Door

From the EPA to NASA, the FDA to OSHA, President Obama has failed to make science accessible

In July 2009, just months after President Obama took office promising to revolutionize government transparency, leaders of the Society of... More

Reports

Urgent Call

Cell phones help a marginalized Indian community speak out

On the evening of May 16, 2010, Vijjobai Talami, the headwoman of Gumiapal village, phoned CGNet Swara, a fledgling mobile... More

Cover Story

The Scandal Beat

Does the press’s obsession with rule-breaking get in the way of real reform of college sports?

In December, Ohio State University suspended five of its football players for violating the rules governing intercollegiate athletics by... More

Feature

Fade to Black

As a video revolution sweeps the world, US television news caps its lens

For the first time in history, mankind is developing a universal language: video. People now communicate with video on... More

Feature

Along Recession Road

Meet some of the people who are falling out of the American middle class

To earn rent money, a laid-off single mother in Moulton, Alabama, has a yard sale. She parts with the bed... More

Feature

All the President’s Pundits

When the White House tries to shape, seduce, and spin, what’s a journalist to do?

On a Thursday evening this past May, Eliot Spitzer, hosting his now-cancelled CNN show, lobbed a chummy question to... More

Reports

Pirate Radio, Mayan Style

Indigenous stations want to come in from the cold

When you get to Sumpango, in the central highlands of Guatemala, you won’t be able to find Radio Ixchel... More

Departments

Darts and Laurels

Darts and Laurels

Telling the whole story about Thailand

For much of his career, the British journalist Andrew MacGregor Marshall has covered Southeast Asia for Thomson Reuters. During that... More

Editorial

Size Matters

News Corp.’s corruption would matter less if it weren’t so big

In the August 8 issue of New York magazine, the columnist Frank Rich suggests this takeaway from the News... More

Editorial

Editor’s Note

The best of “Second Read”; CJR’s new book

Two redesigns ago, in 2004, the Columbia Journalism Review launched a back-of-the-book feature called Second Read that has proved immensely... More

Language Corner

Going Strait

Narrowing down the difference between “strait” and “straight”

When two words sound the same and have similar meanings, you know they’re going to merge eventually. But until they... More

Currents

News Frontier

The power of one

Entry barriers are low in the online news world. Cheap hosting and free templates have launched a million blogs, including... More

Currents

Hard Numbers

Some stats and figures on the news industry

109number of segments CNN aired on the News Corp. phone-hacking scandal, July 4-13 71number of segments aired on MSNBC 30number... More

Currents

Haven Bound

A Q&A with Icelandic Parliamentarian, Birgitta Jónsdóttir

In 2008, Iceland was hit hard by the global financial crisis. Citizen outrage and political unrest followed, sparking a... More

Currents

Local (Wiki)Leaks

Finding local angles in the secret cables

Like any digital-age enterprise reporter, I scan certain online databases as a matter of daily routine: local campaign-finance and... More

Letters to the Editor

Notes From Our Online Readers

Readers recommend books to our summer reading list

In mid-July, with temperatures rising and the entire CJR office dreaming of beach chairs and umbrella drinks, we asked our... More

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Readers respond to our July/August Issue

PBS: Where’s the Beef? Elizabeth Jensen’s story “Big Bird to the Rescue?” (CJR, July/August) in your cover package about the... More

Opening Shot

Opening Shot

Fostering an awareness of our commonalities, ten years after September 11th

Four planes. One-hundred-and-two minutes of the towers smoking. Almost three thousand dead. Then, suddenly, it is ten years later,... More

Ideas & Reviews

Review

What a Country

Two new efforts to make sense of America’s struggles

In the midst of a cross-country pilgrimage, Iraq war veteran Colby Buzzell finds himself transfixed by an “old dusty American... More

Review

The Cheap Seats

Joe Bageant told uncomfortable truths about class in America

In the last decade of his life, Joe Bageant came full circle. He and his third wife, Barbara, were... More

The Lower Case

China rescues 89 trafficked children, arrests 369

Headlines that editors probably wish they could take back

Bison study plan to use sterilization, Jackson Hole (WY) Daily, 6/3/11 2 parrots sought in Long Beach birdnapping, Press Telegram... More

Review

Brief Encounters

Short reviews of books on newspaper publishers

The Magnificent Medills: The McCormick-Patterson Dynasty: America’s Royal Family of Journalism During a Century of Turbulent Splendor By Megan McKinney... More

The Research Report

Happy Birthday, Wikipedia!

Ten years of Wikipedia and their neutral point of view policy

Wikipedia is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, to the surprise of skeptics who never thought a volunteer-written, open-access encyclopedia... More

Second Read

Among the Mongers

Henry Mayhew and the pursuit of history, from the bottom up

There is no place in any era more evocative of soot, steam, gruel, and misery than Victorian London. It... 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.