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In the weeks to come, Journalists will be covering a range of stories touched off by the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. The decisions ahead have the potential to change the political and ideological complexion of the Supreme Court, set off a power struggle between the president and the GOP-controlled U.S. Senate and […]
Posted: February 14, 2016, 2:07 am
Gary Martin, the government and political editor for the San Antonio Express-News, was working the weekend shift this afternoon when he got a tip from a federal source bearing big news. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who had been a conservative fixture on the high court since his appointment in 1986, was dead, according to […]
Posted: February 14, 2016, 12:14 am
It happens. President Obama was in Los Angeles Thursday for a fundraiser. That was on his schedule and was covered. But he then segued to a private dinner that wasn't on his public schedule. And wasn't covered. The story was broken by Deadline, an entertainment publication, which initially indicated he'd dined with Jeffrey Katzenberg, the […]
Posted: February 12, 2016, 10:43 pm
Fact-checkers around the world are increasingly awarding — or letting their readers elect — the most outrageous political fib from the ones they fact-checked in the previous year. The awards are meant to be tongue-in-cheek, because no fact-checker has covered every single claim made the previous year. But they do help bring attention to claims […]
Posted: February 12, 2016, 7:27 pm
BuzzFeed’s distributed content strategy meets its efforts to cover (and also hire) more diverse communities in Pero Like, a new distributed project that is aiming to making “content that resonates with English-speaking Latinxs,” according to tweets announcing the project from staffers Alex Alvarez and Norberto Briceño. (“Latinx” is a gender-nonspecific term.) The new distributed vertical...
Posted: February 12, 2016, 7:20 pm
Coaches' corner Once upon a time, there were writing coaches in newsrooms across the country, and then, they began disappearing. In this monthly feature, we hope to help writers and editors by sharing advice about storytelling and enterprise. The story: "The Long Fall of Phoebe Jonchuck," by Lane DeGregory From: The Tampa Bay Times […]
Posted: February 12, 2016, 5:58 pm
The feel-good sports story of the 2014 summer has, inevitably, wound up in court. Parents of former players from Chicago's Jackie Robinson West Little League team filed a federal court lawsuit Thursday against Little League International, the local league, various officials and both ESPN and commentator Stephen A. Smith. In sum, they either claim that […]
Posted: February 12, 2016, 4:34 pm
Mike McGraw has witnessed a lot in 40 years of reporting. One thing he never expected to see: a stage production based on his work. But that’s exactly what’s happening this month in downtown Kansas City, Missouri, where a local theater group is staging a one-act play based on McGraw’s years-long investigation into a 1988 explosion that killed six firefighters....
Posted: February 12, 2016, 4:09 pm
Headlines that accompany news of the detection of gravitational waves read like this: "Einstein Was Right: Gravity Ripples Across the Universe as Waves," "Einstein's right again: Scientists detect ripples in gravity," and "Einstein was right: Gravity and government are powerful." Here's a collection of front pages that led with the guy who predicted this discovery […]
Posted: February 12, 2016, 3:18 pm
In the past five days, Boston Globe political reporter James Pindell wrote three front-page stories about the New Hampshire primary. He also did a couple dozen TV and radio appearances, sent out five email newsletters, posted four pictures to Instagram, sent more than 120 tweets, and did three Facebook Live videos and three Periscope livestreams....
Posted: February 12, 2016, 2:30 pm
Last August, a college student named Alan Pean was Tasered and shot in the chest by two security guards shortly after seeking treatment for a psychotic episode at a Houston hospital. Pean is the subject of a major New York Times story by Elisabeth Rosenthal that was published Friday morning, which serves as a look...
Posted: February 12, 2016, 2:10 pm
Yet another thing journalists have to explain to voters during an already complex election season: In America, some people have the voting power of 10,000 ordinary citizens. Case in point: The Iowa Democratic caucuses ended in a virtual tie between Hillary Clinton and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. But when networks reported the returns, they didn't […]
Posted: February 12, 2016, 2:06 pm
Good morning. Is trashing him 'elitism?' The Huffington Post caused a stir, ranging from praise for high-mindedness to scorn for facile editorial bravado, when it decided early on to cover Donald Trump as entertainment. Now CNN’s Jake Tapper argues that the unceasing mocking of Trump by Huffington and The New York Daily News is a […]
Posted: February 12, 2016, 12:41 pm
, investigative reporters have approached stories with a similar mindset: Find the bad guys. We collect examples of wrongdoing, we put the examples in a pile, and if the pile becomes big enough, we have a story. If the story is compelling enough, maybe someone will call for change. This approach works well, and I have used it frequently...
Posted: February 12, 2016, 11:50 am
Earlier this afternoon, the last holdout from a group of armed protesters that seized federal buildings near the town of Burns, Oregon gave himself up. David Fry's surrender marked the end of a 41-day standoff that's seen scrutiny from national and regional outlets alike. But for The Oregonian, which has been covering the occupation since […]
Posted: February 11, 2016, 9:02 pm
It’s a proud day
for, well, whichever town this happens to be. Stone-faced cops take the podium to announce their big drug bust, toting a few kilos of heroin or cocaine and a pyramid of mugshots. Officers describe the investigation, pledge their commitment to safe streets, and warn any drug dealers out there to watch their backs. Reporters, meanwhile, return...
Posted: February 11, 2016, 7:15 pm
When you open Quartz’s new app for the first time, you’re greeted with a friendly, “Hey there.” The app, designed like a messaging app, explains that it’s “a conversation about the news — sort of like texting.” The app, released today and only available on iPhone and Apple Watch for now, presents teases to stories...
Posted: February 11, 2016, 4:56 pm
Business Insider has come a long way in the U.S., and now it wants its name to travel even farther around the world. While it’s not exactly a rags-to-riches story, BI’s rise from shaky digital startup to traffic powerhouse to its acquisition by Axel Springer fall of last year (at a valuation of $442 million)...
Posted: February 11, 2016, 3:17 pm
In June 2014, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation launched the Local News Lab, an initiative in New Jersey to help local news sites develop new and sustainable business models. Supported by a $2 million grant from the Knight Foundation (disclosure: Knight also supports Nieman Lab), it has worked with a handful of local outlets in...
Posted: February 11, 2016, 3:04 pm
In this week's Lower case ... The Washington Post
, 2/5/16 Submitted by Jonathan Make, Washington, DC
Posted: February 11, 2016, 11:50 am
Jon Caramanica has an ear
for physicality. The New York Times
pop music critic is known for his inventiveness when describing the texture of vocals and instrumentals in many genres, and that’s best exhibited when he reviews hip-hop and R&B. To give a sense of that sensibility, below are 77 descriptors that Caramanica has used since the start of last year....
Posted: February 10, 2016, 5:10 pm
Here’s an unfortunate fact of life: On college campuses, it’s not uncommon for the people who control university funds to be accused of using that power to punish or coerce their journalistic critics in some way. At the Student Press Law Center, a leading advocacy organization, “that's a call we probably take a dozen times a year,” says Frank LoMonte,...
Posted: February 10, 2016, 4:40 pm
The New York Times is shuttering its tech blog, Bits, as a separate destination. From a post Wednesday: “When Bits was born, blogs were the path toward a digital future. They were the only way for us to publish quickly, without the constraints of print deadlines and production. No more. We now have a home-grown...
Posted: February 10, 2016, 3:52 pm
Hiking through the hills above Otta, Norway, a town of 1,700 about a four-hour drive north of Oslo, a team from the Norwegian public broadcaster NRK realized it would have to take a new approach to filming the vistas for the interactive documentary it was creating. As part of a company-wide effort to improve mobile...
Posted: February 10, 2016, 2:30 pm
What do you think of when you think of The Christian Science Monitor? Well, the news organization hopes that you think of it as a place that’s been providing “calming context on global news” since 1908, in the words of weekly magazine editor Clayton Collins. And this week, the Monitor launched a new social media...
Posted: February 10, 2016, 2:15 pm
Rachel Dissell lives in one of Cleveland’s “high risk” neighborhoods for lead exposure, a place where the state mandates screenings for small children. Still, when a blood test in late 2012 revealed that her young son had elevated levels in the aftermath of a home renovation, Dissell, a reporter for The Plain Dealer, was horrified--she hadn’t fully realized the scope...
Posted: February 9, 2016, 6:48 pm
The New York Times this week has launched a new email newsletter aimed at college students that will feature a collection of stories that will help students “through their next steps, both professional and personal, in a way that doesn’t come across as prescriptive.” The newsletter, named The Edit, will be sent out every other...
Posted: February 9, 2016, 6:18 pm
To Steve Pratt, one of the biggest benefits of branded podcasts is that they don’t contain advertising. Of course, branded podcasts are, by definition, a form of advertising in and of themselves. But Pratt, who leads what he believes is the only company dedicated solely to producing podcasts for other companies, says the hallmark of...
Posted: February 9, 2016, 4:27 pm
Welcome to Hot Pod, a newsletter about podcasts. This is Issue Fifty-Nine, published February 9, 2016. Happy Lunar New Year! The Tow Center’s “Why Podcasting Matters.” And so there I was, once again, at The Greene Space, WNYC’s live events venue, for yet another podcast-related shindig. I’ve grown fond of the venue over the past...
Posted: February 9, 2016, 3:43 pm
A.O. Scott’s new book asserts
that criticism is a “fundamentally democratic undertaking.” That’s a surprisingly populist sentiment coming from one of the two chief film critics at The New York Times
. Criticism is surely no longer an oligarchy, where writers can claim a monopoly on taste, nor a dictatorship, where they can control hits and flops. But in the eyes...
Posted: February 9, 2016, 11:50 am
How do you get nearly a dozen news outlets scattered across a state to collaborate on an investigative journalism project with lots of local angles? New Jersey has a "dirty little secret" about how to accomplish that.
Posted: February 9, 2016, 1:34 am
Dataproofer is a new, free tool designed to help journalists verify data. The desktop app was developed by the news outlet Vocativ.
Posted: February 8, 2016, 7:11 pm
A volatile market,
plunging tech stocks, and fears of a looming recession (or at least, a major correction) are sending jolts through the media world. Last week Bloomberg reported that in December The Fidelity Blue Chip Growth Fund had cut Snapchat’s holding by 2 percent--its second write down of Snapchat in three months--and that Yahoo had reduced its valuation of...
Posted: February 8, 2016, 5:55 pm
Swipe to skip, swipe to like, swipe to share: these are the familiar smartphone motions that the BBC and a Kenyan startup called Ongair are using in a mobile-focused website called BBC Drop that’s available for testing today. The project came out of a hackathon held by the BBC World Service and BBC Connected Studio...
Posted: February 8, 2016, 5:31 pm
A lot of people in France
are in an uproar because of some proposed changes in the lingua franca
simplifying some spellings (ognon
instead of oignon
for “onion,” for example, and making their “week-end” into a shorter “weekend”). The biggest outrage, though, is reserved for the proposal to remove the circumflex (the little hat) above î and û if its...
Posted: February 8, 2016, 4:15 pm
If your image of Mexico comes only from election rhetoric, you might think of it as a land of drug-pushing, crime-committing illegals aiming to upset all Americans hold dear. Well, it turns out Mexico is a market, not only for American goods of many kinds, but also for journalism. This election season, it is refreshing...
Posted: February 8, 2016, 1:50 pm
The Iowa caucuses are confusing. Every four years, Americans receive a crash course in the quirky midwestern custom that kicks off the presidential nominating cycle, but for news consumers abroad — even those who follow U.S. politics — the process can be even more mystifying. So before Iowans caucused last week, The New York Times...
Posted: February 8, 2016, 12:25 pm
In August 2014
, eight months into South Sudan’s still-raging conflict, some aid worker friends started telling me to get to Bentiu. That the tens of thousands of civilians crowded into the United Nations base on the town’s outskirts faced appalling conditions: food shortages, collapsed toilet blocks, and floodwater creeping into their makeshift homes. Frustrated humanitarians complained the UN Mission in...
Posted: February 8, 2016, 11:50 am
Mike Castellucci, an award-winning TV reporter, does his storytelling with just his iPhone. The results: Masterful and compelling feature vignettes for his station WFAA in Dallas.
Posted: February 8, 2016, 6:00 am
Want more election coverage right in your company’s Slack? On Friday, The New York Times rolled out NYT Election Bot, which anyone can add to their Slack channel to receive “live results and updates on the 2016 elections from The New York Times. You can also submit questions to the newsroom by using the command...
Posted: February 5, 2016, 3:41 pm
January was a good month for The Conversation U.S. (TCUS), the American edition of the nonprofit site first launched in Australia as a platform seeking to offer in-depth, reliable takes on the news cycle. TCUS saw 540,000 unique visitors to its main site last month, but because all of its pieces are published under a...
Posted: February 5, 2016, 2:50 pm
Ask yourself this question: Is it sufficient to protect journalists who report classified information while sources go off to prison?
During the last half decade, a growing roster of national-security reporters has withstood government pressure to reveal confidential sources. They’ve done so with the steady support of news organizations and well-heeled groups that work to protect journalists from threats of...
Posted: February 5, 2016, 11:50 am
In the 16 months since the news startup Billy Penn launched, the media landscape in Philadelphia, the site’s home city, has changed dramatically. The major dailies made a radical shift to a nonprofit model, the alt-weekly City Paper
was shuttered, the public radio station lost experienced leadership, and other digital startups went live, making their own bid for local readers....
Posted: February 4, 2016, 7:51 pm
At 7am Tuesday morning,
Franklin Tucker has been awake for nearly 21 hours. And in a few short hours, he’ll start another 21-hour day. Tucker is the editor in chief of the Belmontonian, a hyperlocal news site for the Boston suburb of Belmont where he lives. A journalist for 25 years, Tucker also serves as the site’s sole reporter, as...
Posted: February 4, 2016, 6:37 pm
News analysis program On Point is one of Boston public radio station WBUR’s most popular and prominent shows, yet its website looks more than a little outdated and isn’t mobile-friendly. It’s hard to figure out where content from the show lives when visiting the main wbur.org website. So the website is getting an overhaul. “We’re...
Posted: February 4, 2016, 4:15 pm
Sports Illustrated is releasing a new app Thursday that emphasizes video and prioritizes SI’s stable of well-known writers over scores and other real-time information. After users open a video in the SI app, they can scroll down and the video minimizes into the top left-hand corner of the screen. They can then continue to explore...
Posted: February 4, 2016, 4:00 pm
More than 90 percent of American adults followed the 2016 presidential election in some medium or another last week, according to a report released today by the Pew Research Center. Among survey respondents who said they had learned about the election, 24 percent said cable news was the most helpful way for them to follow...
Posted: February 4, 2016, 3:51 pm
In this week's Lower case, animals throughout history ... The Seattle Times
, 9/25/77 The Cincinnati Enquirer
, 4/16/68 Metropolis (Ill.) Planet
, 9/20/73 The Milwaukee Journal
, 2/18/77 Berkshire Courier
(Mass.), 12/24/74 San Jose Mercury
Posted: February 4, 2016, 3:23 pm
In one corner,
there’s the knock-’em-down and laugh-out-loud Republican presidential favorite Donald Trump. In the other, the new queen of soul, Adele. Got your popcorn? Good. Let the show begin. That’s how some in the media have portrayed the relationship between Trump and Adele after news broke this week that Trump has played the British pop star’s music on the...
Posted: February 3, 2016, 7:05 pm
If you work with podcasts, how many times have you heard complaints about the difficulty of getting accurate data on audiences and their listening habits, and the lack of an industry standard? Probably too many times to count. Is a download a listen? Were listens on a web player figured into a podcast’s total audience?...
Posted: February 3, 2016, 6:24 pm