Thursday, August 28, 2014. Last Update: Thu 2:50 PM EST

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astroturf

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Fortune flacks for the ‘sharing economy’

Airbnb astroturf group Peers gets a puff piece

If you've at all followed the Airbnb story, in which the rent-a-room startup is in trouble with New York and... More

WSJ Gives Minimum Info on Front Group

An astroturf group gets a hit on the minimum wage

Here's how The Wall Street Journal framed its report yesterday on several states raising the minimum wage next year: Small... More

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Astroturfing The New York Times and Wall Street Journal

A New Jersey businessman hits the media circuit again, with lobbying connections undisclosed

The New York Times writes about New Jersey voters raising the state's minimum wage a buck to $8.25 an hour... More

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Lawmaker’s astroturf op-ed disappears from newspaper’s site (UPDATED)

Homebuilders and cattle ranchers team up to fight an EPA rule, and industry talking points end up in The Post and Courier

UPDATE, July 25: Rivers’ op-ed appears to have been pulled by The Post and Courier. The link to the commentary... More

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Manufactured quotes

News organizations fail to disclose “regular Joe” businessmen’s lobbying ties

Two weeks ago The New York Times wheeled out that old chestnut of Great Recession-era economic reporting: Companies can't find... More

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More on NPR and manufactured quotes

Why lobbyist-provided rent-a-quotes subvert the news

NPR Ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos (who teaches here at Columbia) takes a look at the network's poor showing with manufacturing sources... More

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The great Herbalife astroturf war

The New York Times probes Bill Ackman’s campaign against the multilevel marketer

Herbalife is one of those multilevel marketing companies, often sketchy, that usually operate below the view of the national press.... More

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The Greg Packer of small business

Drew Greenblatt’s frequent press hits usually omit National Association of Manufacturers ties

Drew Greenblatt may be the most quoted small businessman in America. When reporters need small-businessman quotes, Fox needs small-businessman interviews,... More

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When men on the street become spokesmen for a cause

Anecdote laundering from the left on the $15 minimum wage fight

I wrote about astroturfing the other day, noticing how anti-minimum wage and anti-Obamacare activist Joe Olivo shows up repeatedly in... More

Apple can’t hide from a 20-year-old reporter - The University of Michigan student gets behind the tech titan’s newest products

Al Jazeera America struggles to get off the margins - A quality-first strategy faces huge hurdles

Finding James Foley - This 2013 story takes a look at GlobalPost’s search for the photojournalist

Gannett cribs from Advance Publications playbook for struggling newspapers - Staff compete for fewer jobs; ‘readers become the assignment editor’

Cop corruption probe sparks newspaper feud - A spiked story is at the center of a bitter fight between Philadelphia’s two dailies


The impact of watching executions (PSmag)

“[E]xecutions, even for people who support capital punishment, and even when the criminals being put to death evoke little personal sympathy because of the nature of their crimes, take a toll on witnesses”

Times of India demands employee social media passwords (Quartz)

The company will possess log-in information and will be free to post any material to the account without journalists’ knowledge

Reconnecting with a story source, 17 years later (Hartford Courant)

“People who say reporters exploit people? You are right, we do. We parachute into people’s lives, sidle up, convince them that we care — and then disengage when the story is over. But that doesn’t mean we don’t connect, in a genuine way.”

The McDonald’s in Ferguson (LAT)

“Lately, the restaurant has taken on the appearance of a battered frontier outpost”

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.