Reporter quits Sun-Times, cites ‘chilling effect in the newsroom’

Dave McKinney’s blog | Crain’s Chicago Business

Chicago Sun-Times reporter Dave McKinney has resigned from the newspaper, saying, “I’m convinced this newspaper no longer has the backs of reporters like me” in a letter to Michael Ferro, chairman of Sun-Times owner Wrapports LLC.

McKinney was the paper’s Springfield bureau chief and was suspended for five days last week after a Republican gubernatorial candidate, Bruce Rauner, complained about a story on which he co-bylined, because he’s married to a Democratic consultant.

In his post, McKinney calls that suspension “a kind of house arrest that lasted almost a week” and says “It was pure hell.” The Sun-Times later broke with its recent tradition of not endorsing candidates and endorsed Rauner, who is a former investor in Wrapports.

“Readers of the Sun-Times need to be able to trust the paper,” McKinney writes. He continues:

They need to know a wall exists between owners and the newsroom to preserve the integrity of what is published. A breach in that wall exists at the Sun-Times.

It’s had a chilling effect in the newsroom. While I don’t speak for my colleagues, I’m aware that many share my concern.

“It is with reluctance that I accept Dave McKinney’s resignation,” Sun-Times Editor-in-Chief Jim Kirk said in an email to Poynter. He continued:

As recently as this Monday on our Op/Ed page, I stated that Dave is among the best in our profession. I meant it then and I mean it now. The pause we took last week was to ensure there were no conflicts of interest and was taken simply to protect Dave McKinney, the Sun Times and its readers as we were under attack in a heated political campaign. We came to the right result, found the political attacks against us to be false and we stand by our reporting, our journalists and this great newspaper.

I disagree with Dave’s questioning the integrity of this newspaper and my role as editor and publisher. I call the shots. While I’ve been here, our ownership and management have never quashed a story and they have always respected the journalistic integrity of this paper.

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Billy Penn launches desktop, mobile sites

Billy Penn

Jim Brady’s new local-news startup, Billy Penn, launched Wednesday, carrying a note saying its site is still in beta.

The homepage currently features Philadelphia stories mostly drawn from other news outlets, although there are two stories reported by Billy Penn reporters and curators.

The homepage of Billy Penn's desktop site.

The homepage of Billy Penn’s desktop site.

Although the site debuted Wednesday, Billy Penn has been building a following on email and social media in advance of the launch. The news organization has been on Twitter and Facebook for a couple months and has been delivering a weekday newsletter to subscribers for the past five weeks, according to an introductory letter from Billy Penn Editor Chris Krewson and Brady.

RELATED: Brady takes another shot at local journalism with new venture

The letter also lays out a few fundamental guiding principles for the site. Among them: the staff will link out to stories rather than over-aggregating the work of others; the site will allow audience members to track specific stories using a “follow” button that will send out relevant email alerts; and that it will eschew comments for the time being (“It’s our opinion that interaction is moving into a ‘post-comments’ period”). The site’s advertising section notes that Billy Penn will offer native advertising as well as “in moment” ads and themed sponsorships.

This is Brady’s second attempt at starting up a local news site in a large metropolitan city. He presided over the creation of TBD in 2010, but that venture did not last very long. Read more

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Royals Jubilant City

How newspapers connect the Royals’ World Series appearances

Last Wednesday evening, I watched the status updates tick through my Facebook feed. I was on my 30-minute dinner break at my part-time bookseller job, away from television and radio. I posted a status update asking friends to keep their own updates coming, that I knew we – in this instance, the Kansas City Royals – were close.

An office building in Kansas City after the Royals won the ALCS. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

An office building in Kansas City after the Royals won the ALCS. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

After my shift ended, I checked my phone once again, and I chuckled at The New York Times news alert that confirmed what I had already known for three hours. Headline: “Royals Keep Rolling, and Advance to the World Series.” The first paragraph read even more humorous: “After going 29 years without playing a single postseason game, the Kansas City Royals are making up for a lot of wasted time.”

And during that long stretch of nothing between 1985 and 2014, there was one common thread to the experience of watching the Royals cause intermittent euphoria: Newspapers.

My parents attended Game 6 in Kansas City on Oct. 26, 1985, a little less than two months before I was born. There’s a photograph of me in 1986 wearing a Royals outfit at 4 months old. But I didn’t really get introduced to the magnitude of the Royals’ eventual series win until I found a cardboard box in the basement.

My father had collected stadium plastic cups, ticket stubs, programs, and at least two World Series shirts. The box also holds lots and lots of newspapers.

I had called my dad that Wednesday afternoon to see if he wanted me to get him a copy of The Kansas City Star in the morning. My full-time job starts at 3:30 a.m. each day, and I knew that I would need to hit the rounds of gas stations at my soonest possible morning break if I were to get one. (One of my Facebook friends, aged 30, posted a Facebook photo at 7:50 a.m. Thursday of his stack of copies, proudly proclaiming that he had cleaned out the nearest 7-Eleven and was looking forward to one day passing along the copies to his future children and grandchildren.)

No need: Dad’s been buying them at the gas station throughout the last month’s ride, not just Thursday’s “World Class” issue.

Last Thursday I asked him why he still buys the papers.

He likes the articles about the different players, the in-depth profiles, not just of the Royals but also for the San Francisco Giants.

I ask when he thinks we stopped subscribing to the Star at our house, two hours west of Kansas City in Wamego, Kansas. He doesn’t remember taking it in the first place when I was growing up. I laugh and tell him that of course we did. I read “FYI,” the features section, from start to finish daily (and, if I skipped a day, I remember going back and getting caught up on my horoscopes, national music news and celebrity birthdays).

My mind also turns to my late grandfather at this time. John DeWeese adored newspapers. He took both The Star and the Kansas City Times, which ceased publication in 1990. My grandmother’s kitchen table still bears the imprint of newspaper ink from where Pops read his papers every day.

He’s been gone almost 15 years now. I wonder, what would Pops think of the Royals making it to the World Series? Would he share an interest in the Internet like my grandmother? More so, would he be sure to get a copy of each morning’s newspaper, even if the Royals were — as usual — having a mediocre season?

I know for sure the answer to the last question. In 2008, one month after I graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in journalism, I pulled myself away from job applications and wandered into my grandmother’s basement, to my grandfather’s desk, which remains the same since his death in April 2000. There, his fill-in-the-blank desk calendar from 1997 is still sitting. Many of the dates’ questions remained blank, but I happened upon one date that asked, if he could go into any profession he wanted, what it would be.

Journalism, he wrote in his near-perfect cursive.

My mind jumps back to a block away, to my own childhood home, and the basement. I ask my father what editions are in the box – just World Series games, or all of the coverage leading up to the seven games?

He’s not sure. The box might not even exist anymore, he says, laughing – it might have gotten thrown away.

“Nah,” I say, with a laugh back. It has to be there. Nearby, in a similar box, there is a box filled with newspaper clippings and magazine issues paying tribute to Princess Diana, who died when I was in the sixth grade. Those are my mom’s.

Greater Kansas City is now my home, and I’ve lived and worked on both sides of the state line. The former daily newspaper reporter in me is elated, to know that stands are selling out, that fans of all ages have rushed out to purchase their commemorative copies. I don’t want to be skeptical. I want to be in the here, in the now, celebrating the success of not only our baseball team but also the sales and general interest in the newspaper. I want this part of 1985 to stay with us permanently.

It’s been 18 months since I’ve held the title of daily newspaper reporter, but my mind is weighed down with questions: How long will the sales momentum last? Is too much of a good thing ever bad? If it takes us another 29 years to make it to postseason play, will we still be able to purchase our tangible ink copies of celebration in the future?

My five years of professional work experience in print journalism taught me patience, to take each deadline, each issue, each day as it comes, with grace and virtue and the hopes of getting to do it all over again in the next 24 hours. That is how I choose to answer my questions right now. What I do know – for now, at least – is that once the World Series is finished, I won’t go back and read through the Facebook status updates or the New York Times news alert that I forwarded to my family.

I’ll go treasure hunting for that nearly 30-year-old cardboard box. Should it still exist, I’ll gingerly lift out the newspapers and hold the history in my hands. If they’re still around, part of me wants to properly archive them in acid-free folders as an early Christmas present to my father. Really, though, the box will remain where it is, perhaps gaining a new neighbor with the stories of 2014. Read more

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‘It ain’t necessarily so’: 7 quotes from Ben Bradlee in 1986

In 1986, Poynter’s Newsleaders series filmed an interview with Ben Bradlee, then editor of The Washington Post. Bradlee died on Tuesday, October 21, at the age of 93.

You can see the full interview, in which Bradlee talks about Watergate, the Pentagon Papers and his partnership with Katharine Graham.

Here are seven things he said from that interview in 1986. Let’s begin with the introduction, because, well, you’ll see.

1. “It ain’t necessarily so.”

2. “… A better informed world is a better world.”

3. “The power of The Washington Post lies first and above all in the fact that it is published in the capital of the free world. It’s a geographic power. I mean, if we were in Omaha, we would not be as powerful as we are.”

4. “If I meet someone new, it’s odds on that they’ll say, ‘well you don’t look like Jason Robards.’”

5. “I’m more worried about the relationship of the press and government, to working that out, rather than I am worried about the relationship of the press and the public. I think the public eventually works that out pretty well, it seems to me.”


6. “We’ve got a lot of jobs to do but one of them is not be loved. We don’t have to be loved. We have to be respected, I think.”

7. “I hope people will be sorry that I’ve gone, will be appreciative of what I’ve tried to do, but I think it will be a blip.”

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Jessica Hopper is the new editor of Pitchfork’s print magazine

Pitchfork has named Jessica Hopper the editor-in-chief of The Pitchfork Review, a quarterly print magazine about music and culture. Hopper will also be a senior editor at Pitchfork’s daily site, she said in a phone call with Poynter.

Jessica Hopper (Photograph by David Sampson)

Jessica Hopper (Photograph by David Sampson)

“It’s a very special, novel thing,” Hopper said about The Pitchfork Review. “It’s a music magazine about music.”

“We’re definitely excited for Jessica to join the staff full-time as senior editor of the website and Editor in Chief of The Pitchfork Review,” Pitchfork Editor-in-Chief Mark Richardson told Poynter in an email. “She’s known quite a few people on staff for years from being in Chicago, and we’ve all been following her writing for a long time before that. Beyond her talent, she’s a fountain of ideas and enthusiasm.”

In its first year the Review was edited by J.C. Gabel, who will still contribute to the magazine, Richardson said. Hopper’s first issue at the top of the masthead will feature a 20,000-word oral history of Jawbreaker written by Leor Galil, a photo essay about an open-air punk market in Mexico City and a piece by Eric Harvey that draws a connection between the early days of “reality rap” and the TV show “Cops.”

Hopper said her plan is to do stuff “that’s like real music journalism, stuff that’s not even doable anymore because it doesn’t fit into people’s verticals.”

The magazine will also do “longer pieces on contemporary artists that we think are going to be canonical,” Hopper said. Pitchfork President Chris Kaskie and Creative Director Mike Renaud, Hopper said, originally saw the magazine as “the kind of magazine where you pull it off the shelf in 10 years and you know who everybody is.”

The Pitchfork gig is Hopper’s first full-time job as a music journalist; she’s been writing music criticism for nearly 20 years, beginning as the proprietor of the fanzine Hit It Or Quit It and collecting lots of freelance bylines along the way, at outlets like Spin, the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Reader and Minneapolis City Pages. From 1995 to 2003, she ran her own music PR company, representing acts including the Dismemberment Plan, the Gossip and At the Drive-In.

She will no longer be Rookie’s music editor once she begins at Pitchfork but will still write about non-music stuff for that publication — “Rookie is my spiritual home, always,” Hopper said.

A collection of Hopper’s criticism, “The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic,” is due out next May on Featherproof Books, which is run by Tim Kinsella, a member of the great Chicago bands Cap’n Jazz and Joan of Arc. Rolling Stone writer Rob Sheffield will write an intro for the book, Hopper said, whose title is “kind of a joke” that also points out “the absurdity that at the very least, [NPR music critic] Ann Powers and half a dozen other people should be ahead of me on this one.”

The magazine has a print circulation of 10,000 and a single sponsor for each issue. The Pitchfork staff is “very democratic,” Hopper said several times. I asked her about the preponderance of dudes on its masthead. “My experience has been that it’s a place that’s been very welcoming to women and to feminist ideas,” Hopper said. “I wouldn’t be there otherwise. I couldn’t be there otherwise! I feel very respected there.”

Hopper called criticism her “nerd depot” and said she looks forward to helping inexperienced writers refine their voices, giving them the types of edits that are hard to dole out at hyperactive Web publications. “I was lucky that I was getting top edits from Kiki Yablon that made me cry for two years,” she said, referring to the Chicago Reader’s former managing editor and later editor.

Other editors she credits as influences: Will Hermes, Charles Aaron, Steve Kandell and Alison True. They taught her “how to write by showing me what I was doing wrong,” she said. “Because of the state of music journalism, you’re lucky if you get a top edit that’s more than somebody running spellcheck on your stuff.”

The Review doesn’t review records. When it does do criticism, it will tend to be longform, Hopper said, something that benefits artists as well as writers who want to stretch out: “What fun is it having a record come out and feeling like no one understands it enough to write about it properly?” she said. Read more

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Pew: 4 in 10 Internet users have experienced online harassment

Pew Research Center

Women are more likely to experience severe forms of harassment online, according to a Pew survey, and 65 percent of both men and women between ages 18 and 29 have experienced some form of online harassment.

pewwomenharassment

Overall, 4 in 10 Internet users have experienced online harassment, while 73 percent have seen it happen to others.

Online harassment is especially pronounced at the intersection of gender and youth: women ages 18-24 are more likely than others to experience some of the more severe forms of harassment. They are particularly likely to report being stalking online (26% said so) and sexually harassed (25%). In addition, they are also the targets of other forms of severe harassment like physical threats (23%) and sustained harassment (18%) at rates similar to their male peers (26% of whom have been physically threatened and 16% of whom have been the victim of sustained harassment).

Most online harassment takes place on social media sites: “66% of internet users who have experienced online harassment said their most recent incident occurred on a social networking site or app,” Pew reports. The second-most commonly mentioned source of recent harassment, at 22 percent, was online comment sections. Women were more likely to cite social media as a source of harassment:

Fully 73% of women who have experienced online harassment said their most recent incident occurred on social networking sites or apps, compared with 59% of men. Men were more likely to cite the comments section of a website as the site of their most recent harassment – 21% of harassed men vs. 11% of harassed women.

pewanonymity

While 63 percent of respondents agreed the Internet allows people to be more anonymous, fully 92 percent said it allows people to be more critical of others. Over half of those who have been harassed online said they didn’t know the identity of the person who harassed them. Reducing anonymity is a controversial way some news organizations have attempted to cut down on comment section vitriol.


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Hysteria or proper precaution — a conversation with Michel du Cille

Michel Du Cille

Michel du Cille (Photo by: Julia Ewan/TWP)


Kenny Irby interviewed Washington Post photographer Michel du Cille about his work in Liberia covering the Ebola virus, but before we get into his work, we will address Syracuse University’s decision to disinvite the three-time Pulitzer Prize winner from its S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications Fall Workshop.

Each side stands firm that they were considering what would be best for the students on the campus of Syracuse University.

Last Thursday, du Cille had “cleared the 21-day monitoring window for Ebola and was symptom free,” when Syracuse officials told him not to come to the journalism workshop.

It is “pandering to the hysteria of ignorance,” said du Cille. “The most disappointing part of this bad decision is the disservice to the fine journalism students at Syracuse’s Newhouse School. What a missed opportunity to teach future media professionals how to seek out accurate hard facts; backed up with full details about the Ebola crisis,” he wrote in a Facebook post.

RELATED: “Covering Ebola: A Poynter Conversation”

Lorraine Branham, Dean of S.I. Newhouse, told Poynter via email that what du Cille “has not made clear in his criticism of us is that he was not coming to Syracuse to show his work from Liberia or discuss the Ebola crisis. If he were, I might acknowledge that my students missed something — that would have indeed have been a missed opportunity. But this workshop had nothing to do with Liberia or Ebola. He would have critiqued portfolios and reviewed student work.”

For Branham, the decision was more about the general greater good of the university then her personal position. Branham told local media on Friday that if it were just about her she would welcome him into her home for dinner and not fear for her safety.

“This was a tough call but I still believe it was the right one for us,” said Branham. “We did not make this decision lightly. We did so after talking with health officials and local medical doctors who suggested we exercise ‘an abundance of caution.’  A primary concern for us was the issue of the incubation period. While du Cille had not shown any signs of infection by the 21st day — the same day he was schedule to visit Syracuse — we knew that some people have a longer incubation period.”

The issue of how long the incubation period lasts is an open question, said Branham, who sent articles to back up her claim, including one from The Washington Post.

Poynter: How and when were you informed that you were being disinvited to the Syracuse workshop?

Du Cille:  I flew in from Atlanta and headed up to Cap Hill to photograph Centers for Disease Control director Dr. Thomas Frieden at a noon hearing. Got a text from home to call Bruce Strong.

Poynter: Was Nikki, your wife, disinvited as well? (Nikki Kahn is also a photographer with the Washington Post)

Du Cille: By the time I received a phone call from Bruce Strong the SU University leadership had already been in direct meetings before directly discussing with me…It seemed they did not want hear debate from me. Both Nikki and I were disinvited.

Poynter: Why do you think that the hysteria around potential Ebola contamination is so high?

Du Cille: It is a number of things. The mistakes centered around early control of the virus; the mounting deaths in West Africa; the misinformation by some of our own media colleagues; an irrational hysterical public; And I’ll have to say there is a great deal of xenophobia especially, from political leaders.

Poynter:  What alternatives might you have offered if given a voice in the process?

Du Cille: I would have offered to speak publicly about what I saw; offered personal detailed accounts on how the disease spreads. I simply would have offered the University an option to present an informational public forum. There had to be better ways to deal with their fears.

Girl with Ebola

Pearlina stands at the screen door while others talk outside on Sunday, September 21, 2014 in Monrovia, Liberia. Pearlina’s mother died in an ambulance on the way to Redemption Hospital two weeks ago; the child was rescued by Katie Meyler and is being care for by the NGO called More than Me. Pearlina is under observation for signs of Ebola.
Photo by Michel duCille / TWP

Poynter:  How did you draw the Ebola assignment in Liberia?

Du Cille:   I volunteered. I love working in West Africa and thought the Ebola story was historic. I didn’t want to miss it.

Poynter: Tell me about your research and preparation for this assignment.

Du Cille: This was my fourth trip to Liberia. I had great familiarity with the people and region. I also read everything I could find about Ebola.

Poynter: What precautions were you able to take in advance of your journey?

Michel du Cille in his Tyvek suit.

Michel du Cille preps in Tyvek suit; Liberia Sept 29, 2014.
while on assignment covering the Ebola crisis in Liberia. (Photo By: Katie Meyler)


Du Cille: Beside the normal medical prevention vaccines and meds, I consulted with photojournalists who had recently been there: John Moore and David Gilkey, both had just finished rotations. They advised me to get Tyvek suits, good gloves and masks, rubber boots.  They warned that vigilance on washing hands and spraying was critical.  But I also read everything I could find on how to get out of the suits to prevent contamination.

Poynter: Tell me about your biggest challenge will covering this story. Was it physical or mental?

Du Cille:  It was mental … I believe that the world must see how horrible and dehumanizing are the effects of Ebola. After eight trips to the African continent, I never tire or complain about the harshness of life. To me each journey there is an almost spiritual experience. I guess partly because I relate so well to the West African way. Growing up in Jamaica was very much the same; the cadence, body language of the people are pretty very similar.

Poynter: Was there a similar story that prepared you for such a risk?

Du Cille: No, nothing in my 40 years as a photojournalist was ever like this.

Poynter: Were there other international journalists covering this story?

Du Cille: Yes, but not the usual hordes. It is expensive and dangerous.

Poynter: How did you care for yourself and your gear during this assignment?

Du Cille: Vigilant cleaning and spraying with chlorine solution. The new Liberian handshake is elbow-to- elbow bump and no touching of any kind.

Poynter: Tell me about the frame of mind of the people that you met at the church on that Sunday morning?.

Du Cille: Strangely they were upbeat and almost normal. I expected sadness and emotion. I think after years of war and struggle, Liberians just focus on survival.

Poynter: What’s your most vivid memory now that you are back in the U.S.?

Du Cille: Sadly, I photographed a very ill woman who I presumed was too far gone. She was bleeding from the mouth. That situation really touched me. Her family arrived with their arms, feet and torso wrapped in plastic. They seemed so desperate. (Du Cille wrote a piece about the photograph for News Photographer, which will appear in its next edition. )

Poynter: How did you prepare for the multimedia requirement and what gear did you use most?

Du Cille: I did Instagram as much as I could and a small amount of video with my Nikon gear.

Poynter: Do you have any advice based on your lessons learned for visual reporters as the coverage continues?

Du Cille: Yes. Don’t go if you are not prepared to take the risks. It is different from bullets and guns. A simple dab to wipe your eye could get you infected.

Correction: Previous versions of this story spelled du Cille’s last name inconsistently. Read more

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Hotel hiring reporter for ‘long hours, bad pay’

Any takers? The Wells Inn in Sistersville, West Virginia, is hiring a business and political reporter for its twice-monthly paper for “long hours” and “bad pay,” according to a listing on JournalismJobs.com.

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The listing, which boasts salary somewhere between $15,000 to $20,000, says the job would be “great for someone who is looking to get back in the game after being ‘downsized,’ needs a change of pace or simply wants to hide from their ex or other people they have pissed off.”

The job requires the ideal candidate to balance reporting and writing with being stationed at the hotel’s front desk and assisting in “in minimal guest services”. Oh, and no drinking on the job “without prior permission”.

The hotel has a history of humorous ads. When it was starting a newsletter last year, it listed a position for a reporter who was OK with checking in guests and dealing with “self promoting ‘pillars of society.’” Read more

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That time Ben Bradlee thanked Richard Nixon

mediawiremorningGood morning. Here are 10 media stories.

  1. Remembering Ben Bradlee on Twitter: Carlos Lozada, The Washington Post’s incoming nonfiction book critic, began tweeting passages from Ben Bradlee‘s memoir, “A Good Life,” after the former Post executive editor died Tuesday. (@CarlosLozadaWP) | 196 or so tweets later, here’s a selection: “It would be ungrateful of me not to pause here and acknowledge the role of Richard Milhouse Nixon in furthering my career.” (@CarlosLozadaWP) | “Make no mistake about it: there is only one thing an editor must have to be a good editor, and that is a good owner.” (@CarlosLozadaWP) | “When a job candidate came in with good clips but was soft spoken and reticent, #Bradlee’s verdict: ‘Ehhh. Nothing clanks when he walks.’” (@CarlosLozadaWP)
  2. More Bradlee: Here’s a long video interview he did with Poynter in 1986. (Poynter) | Don Graham: “I would like to tell you why we all loved Ben Bradlee so much — loved working for him, loved working with him — and why we felt he could make anything possible.” (WP) | Jill Abramson: “One of the sadnesses of my career is that I never worked for him.” (Time) | David Remnick: The “most overstated notion about Bradlee was the idea that he was an ideological man.” (The New Yorker) | David Carr: “By some estimations, including his own, his most enduring accomplishment had nothing to do with the Pentagon Papers or Watergate. … In 1969, he conjured Style, a hip, cheeky section of the newspaper that reflected the tumult of the times in a city where fashion and discourse were rived with a maddening sameness.” (NYT) | Mark Athitakis: “At the risk of being a pedant, WaPo has an ‘ironclad rule’ for obits that nobody dies of ‘natural causes’… but Ben Bradlee, the Post reports, died of ‘natural causes.’” (@mathitak) | Newsweek will run some of his articles for that magazine today. (@Newsweek) | OK, one more Lozada tweet: “In the Washington bureau of Newsweek, even one’s most beautiful prose was rewritten by some faceless bastard in New York.” (@CarlosLozadaWP)
  3. Brian Stelter vs. Rush Limbaugh vs. Brian Stelter: “If Limbaugh really thinks he knows what’s in the president’s head, if he really thinks people ‘at the highest levels of government’ believe in some diseased form of payback for slavery, he should defend this thinking — not hide behind a three-week-old sound bite from a CNN guest.” (CNN)
  4. Colorado county decides newspaper ruling was incorrect: Larimer County Clerk and Recorder Angela Myers reversed an order that said Colorado State University’s newspaper, The Rocky Mountain Collegian, couldn’t be placed near a polling place. (The Denver Post) | “‘It’s the law that you’re not supposed to have electioneering materials in that area, and I am the enforcer of that,’ Myers said.” (The Rocky Mountain Collegian)
  5. Maybe Edward Snowden’s biggest contribution to journalism: He insisted reporters in contact with him use encryption. “Snowden has now provided a highly visible example of how, in a very high-stakes situation, encryption can, at a minimum, create time and space for independent journalistic decision-making about what to publish and why,” Steve Coll writes. (The New Yorker)
  6. Why she left the news: “I’m tired of jockeying for position in a profession that never hesitates to finger ‘racists’ in public, but can’t see the very real racism in its own newsrooms,” Rebecca Carroll writes. (The New Republic)
  7. NBC News freelancer declared free of Ebola: Ashoka Mukpo announced he was in the clear on Twitter. (USA Today) | “be on the lookout for the Ebola Diaries blog coming soon. Will compile material from long-term reporter residents of Liberia” (@unkyoka)
  8. How the West might be won: The California Sunday Magazine’s plans for nailing down the left coast’s lean-back reading hours. (CJR)
  9. Front page of the day, curated by Kristen Hare: Bradlee on the Post’s front page: “An editor of legendary impact.”. (Courtesy the Newseum.)

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  10. Job moves, edited by Benjamin Mullin: Joe Weisenthal will host a TV show and develop a market-focused website for Bloomberg. He is executive editor at Business Insider. (Business Insider) | Ashkan Soltani will be chief technologist at the Federal Trade Commission. Previously, he was an independent privacy researcher who helped The Washington Post cover the National Security Agency. (WP) | Mick Greenwood is head of video at Time Inc. UK. Previously, he was managing editor of video at MSN. Richard Giddings is now head of mobile at Time Inc. UK. Previously, he was digital editions program manager there. (Time Inc.) | Job of the day: Vice News is looking for an associate producer. Get your résumés in! (Journalism Jobs) | Send Ben your job moves: bmullin@poynter.org

Suggestions? Criticisms? Would like me to send you this roundup each morning? Please email me: abeaujon@poynter.org. Read more

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P-1962 JFK Speech

Today in Media History: In 1962 President Kennedy announced the discovery of Soviet missiles in Cuba

At 7 p.m. on October 22, 1962, in a televised speech to the nation, President John Kennedy announced the discovery of Soviet nuclear missiles in Cuba.

According to the JFK Library, “for thirteen days in October 1962 the world waited — seemingly on the brink of nuclear war — and hoped for a peaceful resolution to the Cuban Missile Crisis.”

Screenshot from National Archives film, 1962

Screenshot from National Archives film, 1962

CBS News Chief Washington Correspondent Bob Schieffer remembers the Cuban Missile Crisis:

The following description of Kennedy’s speech comes from the Paley Center. (UPI has posted examples of its original Cuban Missile Crisis stories.)

“After learning that the Cubans, with the aid of the Soviets, were building bases for medium — and intermittent-range ballistic nuclear missiles that would have the capability of reaching most of the United States, President Kennedy requested television time from all three of the broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, NBC) for 7:00 pm on Monday, October 22. Kennedy was being advised by the Joint Chiefs of Staff to destroy the missile sites through airstrikes and invasion, but opted instead for an alternate plan, supported by Robert Kennedy, initiating a strict quarantine on all offensive military equipment under shipment to Cuba….

….That Kennedy chose to deliver this message via television rather than through diplomatic channels was part of a deliberate plan to give the ultimatum ‘maximum force,’ according to media historian Erik Barnouw, writing in Tube of Plenty: The Evolution of American Television, his landmark history of the medium. This was particularly important politically because the Bay of Pigs fiasco had left the president vulnerable to charges that he was soft on communism. ‘The televised commitment, relayed throughout the world by satellite, would create a situation from which retreat would appear impossible,’ Barnouw wrote.”

President Kennedy’s October 22, 1962 address to the nation:

Four decades after the event, NPR aired the story, “The Cuban Missile Crisis, 40 Years Later.”

“The world’s closest brush with nuclear war came 40 years ago this month, when the Kennedy administration learned the Soviet Union was preparing to put nuclear missiles in Cuba. For 13 days, the world braced for a holocaust. NPR’s Tom Gjelten continues his series of reports from Havana on a unique conference to discuss the lessons learned in the crisis.”

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