Monday, September 22, 2014. Last Update: Mon 10:57 AM EST

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

Punk’s Prophet

Greil Marcus’s seminal work Ranters and Crowd Pleasers: Punk in Pop Music, 1977-92

Discounting cash-in reunions, studio sessions with bank robber Ronnie Biggs, and the like, The Sex Pistols last played in... More

The Paper Chase

For tabloid king Emile Gauvreau, it took a lifetime to slow down

Years later, when he recounted the events that would lead to his becoming the most sensational, shameless, ambitious, and... More

Not for Laughs

A pathbreaking look at the dark comic genius behind “Skippy”

“All cartoonists are geniuses,” wrote John Updike in his introduction to a collection of cartoons by Arnold Roth, a... More

Her Great Depression

Re-reading Betty MacDonald’s Anybody Can Do Anything, on the Northwest’s bust years

From the time I was nine or ten, I carried a spiral-bound Mead notebook with me at all times. I... More

The Devil’s Football

H. L. Mencken airs his unexpurgated Prejudices

As we all know, serious criticism of the arts is leaving the pages of mainstream newspapers and magazines. Shrinking under... More

What It Was Like

Dispatches told why kids from Ohio came back so ‘eerily old’

In the fall of 1978, I was racing through Kent State University’s campus bookstore when a thin book, propped in... More

The Ordinary Jungle

A not-so-awed explorer who was unafraid to say so

In April 1925, a fifty-seven-year-old British explorer named Percy Harrison Fawcett trooped into the Brazilian jungle for the last time.... More

The Reporter Whom Time Forgot

How Cornelius Ryan’s The Longest Day changed journalism

In 1957, an expatriate Irish newspaperman struggling to make a buck after his most recent employer went under began making... More

What Happened Here?

Joan Didion’s forty-year-old cautionary tale still fits America

It was my mother, of all people, who introduced me to Joan Didion’s Slouching Towards Bethlehem. This was in the... More

The Hack

The journalistic education of Gabriel García Márquez

In 1955, eight crew members of a Colombian naval destroyer in the Caribbean were swept overboard by a giant wave.... More

A Failure of Skepticism

Stolen Valor and the effort to expose bogus battlefield heroics

Two years ago, a weekly paper in suburban Chicago profiled an elderly character who had been asked to lead the... More

Of Heroes and Humans

Jim Brosnan wrote about himself, and sports writing evolved

Red Smith, who wrote as well as anyone about athletes and the games they play, called the sports section the... More

‘The Greatest Liar’

Is Defoe’s A Journal of the Plague Year a work of journalism?

I first read Daniel Defoe’s A Journal of the Plague Year on a train from Boston to New York. That’s... More

Dead Reckoning

Manchester’s flawed, essential chronicle of the JFK assassination

The first printing of William Manchester’s The Death of a President ran to a half million copies and reached stores... 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


Female sportscasters are speaking up (NYT)

“[i]n the wake of the recent scandals, women have been driving the story, providing a perspective that their male counterparts simply cannot”

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!

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.