Friday, November 28, 2014. Last Update: Wed 10:50 AM EST

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Merrill Perlman

Duty Double

When nouns and verbs collide

Headlines are supposed to grab a reader’s attention and provide a fast synopsis of an article for a busy reader.... More

Failure to Launch

Adding “ing” makes a noun, or not

When the “launch” of the space shuttle Endeavor finally occurs, many “posts” will appear on blogs and news sites around... More

False Tidals

Not-quite words for natural disasters

Disasters bring out the best in journalism and journalists, and the cataclysmic events in Japan are no different. But in... More

In Style

AP makes more changes

Last Monday, you could have written an “e-mail” to your friend in “Calcutta,” checked for a response on your “smart... More

Indescribable

‘Nondescript’ says more than ‘plain’

Bob Kamman of Arizona writes: “Am I the only one who has noticed the increasing use of the adjective ‘nondescript,’... More

Leading Questions

How some journalism terms were born

The Associated Press recently said it would stop using some wire-service jargon as instructions on its stories. Among them were... More

Overnight Sensation

A wordier term for dusk to dawn

The weather outside was frightful, and so was the advisory from the National Weather Service. Not known for their literary... More

Rotary Club

Old phone terms hang on

Some words outlast the things they were coined to accompany, simply because there’s no good alternative. When you write an... More

Snow Job

Just what constitutes a “record”?

The snowstorm that hit much of the United States last week was one for the books. In Chicago, the 20.2... More

Talking Back

‘Revert’ gains a new meaning

The recruiter was pleased that the law firm was interested in one of his clients. “I will revert with candidate... More

The Fast Lain

Figuring out ‘lay’ and ‘lie’

It’s no “lie”: Many people get “lay” and “lie” wrong a lot. So let’s “lay” down the rules. The best... More

The Frugal Writer

Why use several words when one will do?

At some points in time, people engaged in the profession of journalism tend to learn to acquire the negatively associative... More

The Personals

When to use ‘who’ and ‘that’

“We’re the people that are going to say, ‘No,’ to Washington, D.C., taxing and spending,” U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX),... More

Women’s Suffixes

Making some nouns more feminine

If you die in some states and your son is appointed to handle your estate, he is the “executor.” If... More

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

The press is responsible for ignoring Bill Cosby rape allegations - Where were journalists 10 years ago when claims originally surfaced against him?

Journalism has a plagiarism problem. But it’s not the one you’d expect - Fareed Zakaria’s case highlights news organizations’ ethical grey areas

4 topics John Oliver explained more clearly than television news - The political satirist brings explainer comedy to HBO viewers

Will radio save science journalism? - WNYC will soon have a new health unit


CNN reporters in Ferguson provide coverage of CNN reporters in Ferguson (Slate)

“[T]here was little that justified CNN’s egocentric coverage”

Which media outlets use ‘illegal immigrant’? (Fusion)

“[I]n spite of all the good reasons not to use the phrase, it is still very easy to find in the US press, even in headlines”

Jack Shafer on losing his job (Capital New York)

“Right now, my immediate plan is to go to work as a lay therapist at The Intercept to bring the healing there so John Cook and Matt Taibbi can return. I have great interpersonal skills.”

On outlets that continue to call unknown drone victims ‘militants’ (The Intercept)

“Like the US drone program itself, this deceitful media practice continues unabated”

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.