Daily Archives: August 26, 2014

* “Being paid to write stories is a pretty sweet gig,” says The Atlantic’s Derek Thompson. “Answering an economist’s email at 11:30 PM with a splash of Four Roses bourbon while SportsCenter flickers in the background is not a terrible way to live. (
* Kidnapped journalists are crime victims,” notes Steve Coll. (
* ESPN’s coverage of Michael Sam‘s shower habits draws protests. ( | (
* Rapper confusion at KSAT-TV in San Antonio. (
reddit* Students who take the MIT course that’s dubbed “Credit for Reddit” examine what makes the site work, and compare and contrast it with other social media. ( | Journalists should pay more attention to Reddit. (
* Elizabeth Spiers‘ pledge: “I will write mostly badly and more often.” (
* An NPR interview subject admits he tries to intimidate bicyclists; some listeners don’t like the way the admission is handled. (
* Roger Franklin: “When I was at Time, everyone ‘worked’ late on Fridays so the company would pay for $200 taxis to Hamptons. No more.” (@jolly_rogered)
* The last line of a long piece titled “Who Reads Mein Kampf”: “Full disclosure: I did not read Mein Kampf. Because it’s by Hitler.” (
* Washington Post’s Fred Hiatt discusses the paper’s climate change editorials with Joe Strupp. (
* New BuzzFeed president Greg Coleman says “I’m gonna be catching up to the rocket ship, getting into the rocket ship. Then once I catch up, I’ll figure out how to add the value the team here wants me to add.” (
* “The [Philadelphia] Daily News was and is a fabulous foil to The Inquirer, but…” (
* Fire Sale coming soon? Amazon probably hasn’t sold more than 35,000 of its Fire phones. (

The Times of London is now pumping typewriter sounds into the newsroom.

“This is just a playful experiment thought up by our Editor to generate some of the excitement of newsrooms,” a Times spokesperson tells me.images-2 “Some reporters are bemused and some like the hat-tip to our historic past now that digital deadlines are so fluid. We are very much a digital newsroom, see here, but we’re also one of the oldest newspapers in the world – 230 years in January – and we were the first to use The Times in the title, so we’re proud of our heritage.”

A journalism professor and former Times staffer points out:

Typewriters disappeared from newsrooms in the late 1980s. There will be very few people there who remember the noise of massed bands of typewriters in the newsroom. They will have to find out whether a crescendo of noise will make reporters work better or faster.

* Murdoch’s UK paper adds the sounds of Fleet Street to its newsroom (
* How about adding wire service teletype machine bells, too? (

Update: Check out the photo of the speaker pumping out the typewriter sounds – and don’t miss the replies to the tweet, including: “Why don’ t they just pipe in the noise of screaming tortured souls in hell?”

“Gannett thinks that advertisers still want ads that hit users over the head.”ganad

Go to or any Gannett-owned newspaper website and you’ll get a full-screen ad blocking what you’re trying to read.

“We want to make the entire [computer] screen a TV set,” says Steve Ahlberg, Gannett’s Vice President of Revenue Solutions.

Okay, Steve, then consider Gannett a blocked channel.

* Gannett looks to ignite the return of the giant banner ad (

University of Toronto professor’s tweet

Gazette editor-in-chief Iain Boekhoff (left) says of the story: “I’m surprised it’s got so much traction because it’s in our frosh week issue every year.editor Two years ago it was just straight ‘how to have sex with your TA’ as one of the 50 or 100 things to do before you leave Western. …I had one complaint late Sunday night which is after three days of people losing their minds on Twitter. This thing is entirely Twitter. I don’t regret publishing it. I regret that it caused offense to so many people, and it wasn’t well-received by some people.”

He adds that “Facebook stalk is a common term for students and is not a malicious term in any way.”

The London (Ontario, Canada) Abused Women’s Center has called for Boekhoff to step down. I’ve asked him to comment.

The provost says: “The Gazette has the right to run provocative articles but I find it objectionable that your paper would publish a column promoting the idea that students should attempt to have inappropriate relationships with graduate teaching assistants.”

* Western University runs article about dating teaching assistants (
* So you want to date a teaching assistant? (
* Western University’s provost blasts the article in a letter to the paper (

From the Archives: Ten years ago today, Jay Rosen wrote to me about Jack Shafer and why the Slate press critic (at that time) hasn’t emerged as the next A.J. Liebling. Rosen wrote on August 26, 2004:

A.J. Liebling wrote the Wayward Press column for the New Yorker. Shafer writes the Press Box column for Slate. Those are roughly similar activities. Shafer tells us that Liebling did 82 press columns over 18 years at the New Yorker.

Jack Shafer (left) and Jay Rosen

Jack Shafer (left) and Jay Rosen

Judging by the Press Box archive, Shafer has written 200+ columns over four and a half years. Is it fair to ask: why has Shafer himself not emerged as the “next” Liebling? After all, he has the most interest in the question. The opportunity has been there for him, week to week. He had motive, means. Is it the anxiety of influence? Other priorities at the time? Lack of competition, perhaps?

Rosen sent his letter after he was targeted by Shafer, who wrote: “Instead of producing the next Liebling, the field of journalism saddles us with the worry-bead analysis of Tom Rosenstiel and the goo-goo intentions of Jay Rosen, for which there is no audience outside the industry (maybe not even inside it).”

* Romenesko Letters: Jay Rosen has a question about Jack Shafer (
* Shafer on the uncritical worshippers of press critic A.J. Liebling (

* Hundreds of Turner Broadcasting veterans will be getting buyout offers. (
* CNN’s Jeff Zucker is praised for admitting you can’t do more with less. (
* Time’s Ferguson story – shared 4,076 times on Twitter – was the most social of the three newsweeklies. (
angel* Cartoonist Matt Bors predicted a he-was-no-angel story about Michael Brown. The cartoon on the right is from August 18. ( | “No angel” reference in New York Times’ Brown story “was a regrettable mistake,” says the public editor. ( | Did people read the entire story? asks the Timesman who wrote the piece. (
* When journalists become the story. (
* Former AP Jerusalem bureau staffer Matti Friedman tries to provide “a few tools to make sense of the news from Israel.” (
* Napa Valley Register’s newsroom is badly damaged by Sunday’s earthquake, but staffers still put out a paper. (
* Please pull the plug on the MTV Video Music Awards! (
* Longtime Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Karen Heller heads to the Washington Post Style section. She writes in her farewell piece: “The Inquirer has been roiled by turbulence. This was no place for the weak. Every spring or two brought a new owner, a new plan, and, often, chaos. This fabled paper kept churning, this amazing newsroom pushing against the tide.” (
* How New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor got Starbucks to quickly change its barista scheduling policy. (
* John Oliver explains things better than TV news broadcasts. (
abc* Big producer changes at ABC News. (
* Claim: “Mainstream journalists delight in their ability to get Al Sharpton on the phone for a quote.” (
* Philadelphia Public Record says it fired the staffer who added Asian slurs to a photo caption. ( | (
* Andrew Leonard: “A world in which the [New York] Times is struggling to survive does not sound like the golden age of journalism to me.” (
* “Who could do such a thing to the most open-hearted person any of us knew?” asks one of James Foley‘s friends. (
* Men’s Health: We stand behind our story on the costs of robotic surgery. (
* BuzzFeed’s Chris Geidner is named NLGJA’s Journalist of the Year. (
* A new corporate headquarters for the Baton Rouge and New Orleans Advocate. ( AUTO-PLAY AD)
* The 2014 Online Journalism Awards finalists have been announced. (
* New York congressional candidate Elise Stefanik cuts a press conference short after being asked a question she doesn’t like. (
* Nothing on my feed: Tweeting photos of passed-out college students is said to be a “trend.” (