Audit Notes: Bloomberg Headlines, Bad Ad News, Wall Street Protests

The Audit has a love-hate reading relationship with Bloomberg News’s wacky headlines. Here are a few we’ve flagged over the years:

Savannah Cries Over Bicycle Lost After Subprime Reset

Profit `Not Satanic,’ Barclays Says, After Goldman Invokes Jesus

Think About Sin When Bonuses Are Revealed

Marijuana-Like High Helps Ex-Trashman’s Syn Battle Solid Sex

Darth Wall Street Destroying Debtors With Credit-Default Swaps

Now there’s a Tumblr after The Audit’s own heart: Strange Bloomberg Headlines.

This one from May is my personal favorite:

Cute Frog Battling Chytridiomycosis Poses for Her Close-Up in High Sierra

Check it out.

(h/t Chris Roush)

— The flailing economy is worsening newspaper advertising trends again.

The New York Times Company says it expects its third quarter advertising revenue at the company, which includes the Times, The Boston Globe, and smaller papers, to drop 8 percent, compared to the 4 percent decline it had projected earlier, Dow Jones reports.

Print ad revenue will fall 10 percent. Worse, digital ad revenue will decline 2 to 3 percent. Good thing it’s got that paywall. Circulation revenue will make up for part of that, climbing 4 percent, the company predicts.

Don’t look now, but another tip into deep recession would put the newspaper industry right back where it was three years ago: Smashed between structural decline caused by the Internet and cyclical decline caused by a declining economy.

— The Philadelphia Daily News’s Will Bunch criticizes skimpy coverage of the Wall Street protests.

What do you think was running in the pro-government, pro-Mubarek newspapers in Egypt back in February, when crowds of unhappy and often un- or under-employed citizens began crowding into Tahrir Square? I don’t know the answer to that, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say there probably wasn’t a lot of coverage of what was happening in Tahrir Square, at least at first. They were probably running cute feature stories about an old-time falafel stand in a changing Cairo neighborhood, or maybe articles on parking problems at the Great Pyramids. They certainly weren’t going to call attention to the elephant in the room that was about to knock over a corrupt and decadent society.

I was thinking about that this week, during the extra time I had on my hands because I wasn’t reading in the pages of the New York Times or the Washington Post about the Wall Street protests that have been going on now for four days, with hundreds of disenchanted and disaffected youth camping out nightly in a lower Manhattan park, marching on the financial district by day, getting arrested and provoking a large police presence including a phalanx of NYPD cops guarding the notorious Merrill Lynch bronze idol of greed.

Call me crazy, but as a journalist marking his 30th anniversary in the news business this year, I would think that an ongoing protest like that in my hometown would at least make the local newspaper. Not necessarily on Page 1, and not even every day necessarily. But at least wedged somewhere between the various ads for Tiffany and Saks, etc.

Actually, the NYT did put a story on A22 about it three days ago, but it was as much a story on cops shutting down the streets as it was on the protests themselves. It hasn’t covered it in the paper since.

Bunch makes the case that if this were a Tea Party protest, we’d have wall-to-wall coverage. There’s not much doubt about that. And there’s not much doubt that this one has been undercovered.

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Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at Follow him on Twitter at @ryanchittum. Tags: , , , ,