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In Case You Missed It

Columbia Journalism Review Ariel Stulberg

Testing news paywalls: Which are leaky, and which are airtight?

"We tested the paywalls at eight prominent subscription news outlets, three daily newspapers and five magazines — The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, The Nation, Foreign Policy, Harvard Business Review, and The Information—and found that all but one of those were 'soft' to one degree or another, and six of eight allowed for some form of unlimited exception, allowing non-subscribers to read widely."

The Wall Street Journal Jack Marshall

Facebook tool handles media companies’ video ad sales

"The new ad offering, called Audience Direct, will invite publishers to list video ad inventory for sale from across their properties, and to specify pricing. Marketers will then have the ability to log on to the system and to purchase ad space from specific publishers on a self-service basis, potentially streamlining the buying and selling process for both parties."

Nieman Lab LAURA HAZARD OWEN

Quartz will let you hit snooze on Trump news

"If you’ve started feeling panicky every day between 5 and 6 p.m. because the volume of Trump news and notifications are just too much, there is a solution for you in the Quartz iPhone app: The app was updated Tuesday to let users turn on a '24-hour political timeout' that will not show them any news or notifications about DJT for one full relaxing day."

The Washington Post Margaret Sullivan

The Seth Rich lie, and how the corrosion of reality should worry every American

"For lies to successfully masquerade as news, they need help. They need accessories to the crime against truth."

CNN Oliver Darcy

Seth Rich's brother pleads with Hannity to stop spreading conspiracy theory

"The brother of slain Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich wrote a letter on Tuesday to the executive producer of Sean Hannity's Fox News show pleading with him to find 'decency and kindness' in his heart and stop spreading an unproven conspiracy theory about the unsolved murder."

Backchannel Ben Hersh

How fonts are fueling the culture wars

"Pay attention: Typography isn’t just catchy visuals. It can also be dangerous."

Washingtonian Andrew Beaujon

Have Politico’s snacks gone downhill?

"Now that news about the Trump administration breaks at an unhealthy pace and staffers rely on impromptu sustenance, Washingtonian hears grumbles that Politico’s snack program has lately declined in quality."

CJR Lewis Wallace

Fired 'Marketplace' reporter: "There are times journalists should become the story"

"When your survival is a 'public issue,' a clear line between professional life and advocacy is exposed as a privilege."

Boston Magazine Simon van Zuylen-Wood

Can Linda Henry save The Boston Globe?

"She’s on a mission to save Boston’s hometown newspaper. Let’s hope it works — for all our sakes."

Nieman Lab C.W. ANDERSON

What an academic hoax can teach us about journalism in the age of Trump

"From the 'hermeneutics of quantum gravity' to the 'conceptual penis,' attempted hoaxes tell us that our contemporary problems around truth are both cultural and structural."

Politico Josh Gerstein

Judge won't move libel suit against BuzzFeed over Trump dossier

"A federal judge has turned down BuzzFeed's request to move a libel suit over its publication of a dossier containing unverified allegations against President Donald Trump."

The Hollywood Reporter Michael O'Connell

MSNBC wins in primetime as Rachel Maddow ascends

"With Megyn Kelly now at NBC and O'Reilly off podcasting somewhere, Sean Hannity is the only network stalwart holding down the FNC lineup."

Digiday Lucia Moses

Stat is 'on its way' to reaching 10,000 subscribers in three years

"Even after putting some of its content behind a pay wall, it’s expanded its audience. Stat sights internal analytics showing a high of 2 million users in March (its comScore number is a much-lower 761,000 unique visitors in April, which is typical of a small publication)."

Wired Emma Bazilian

Wired's new editor bans jump pages

"You probably lose a third of your readers every time you have a jump page."

The Washington Post Samantha Schmidt

Tomi Lahren lands new gig at pro-Trump advocacy group

"Great America Alliance, an offshoot of one of the largest pro-Trump super PACs, announced Monday that Lahren will be joining the organization in a communications role."

In case you missed it

Columbia Journalism Review Ariel Stulberg

Testing news paywalls: Which are leaky, and which are airtight?

"We tested the paywalls at eight prominent subscription news outlets, three daily newspapers and five magazines — The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, The Nation, Foreign Policy, Harvard Business Review, and The Information—and found that all but one of those were 'soft' to one degree or another, and six of eight allowed for some form of unlimited exception, allowing non-subscribers to read widely."

The Wall Street Journal Jack Marshall

Facebook tool handles media companies’ video ad sales

"The new ad offering, called Audience Direct, will invite publishers to list video ad inventory for sale from across their properties, and to specify pricing. Marketers will then have the ability to log on to the system and to purchase ad space from specific publishers on a self-service basis, potentially streamlining the buying and selling process for both parties."

Nieman Lab LAURA HAZARD OWEN

Quartz will let you hit snooze on Trump news

"If you’ve started feeling panicky every day between 5 and 6 p.m. because the volume of Trump news and notifications are just too much, there is a solution for you in the Quartz iPhone app: The app was updated Tuesday to let users turn on a '24-hour political timeout' that will not show them any news or notifications about DJT for one full relaxing day."

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Coffee Break Course

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How to avoid clichés in your writing

Roy Peter Clark writes, "Clichés can multiply and take over your story like text-eating bacteria."

Playing your cards close to your vest…whistling past the graveyard…minding your p’s and q’s…facing the music…toeing the line…putting your nose to the grindstone…swimming against the tide…

Over-reliance on clichés is a form of automatic thinking. As part of the writing process, you may find that you include (or rely on) clichés in a draft. Perhaps you use them as placeholders as the language flows through your fingers onto the screen or page. Revision gives you a chance to think of something fresh, or at least simple, to replace the hackneyed language.

  • Don’t be afraid to take a cliché and tweak it. Write it down and begin to improvise off of it.
  • Make sure you understand the origin of the cliché: It’s “toe the line” not “tow the line.”
  • Be cautious of the “buzz word,” the instant cliché spun off by the culture that's suddenly used in every news show or web article.
  • The occasional cliché may be just the right fit, but recognize when you are using clichés in clusters. Those become writing crutches.
  • Before you use a cliché, give yourself one minute to think of an alternative.
  • Conduct an internet search on your cliché. Perhaps it is not as overused as you think ― or more overused.
  • Be sensitive to clichés of language, but even more to clichés of vision ― tired ways of seeing the world.

Taken from Help! for Writers, a self-directed course by Roy Peter Clark at Poynter NewsU.

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