Proposed FCC net neutrality rules could favor large content providers

The Wall Street Journal | The New York Times In what would amount to a reversal on net neutrality, the Federal Communications Commission will propose new rules that would allow companies like Netflix and Amazon to pay for high-speed delivery of their content, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times reported Wednesday. The rules to be presented Thursday would prevent Comcast, Verizon, and Time Warner from blocking or throttling individual websites called up by users, the Journal's Gautham Nagesh reported. But broadband providers could offer companies preferential treatment for speedier lanes to get their content quickly to consumers based on "commercially reasonable" terms. Consumers could end up paying more for services if companies pass on the additional charges. If adopted, the rules could in effect doom net neutrality, The Times' Edward Wyatt wrote:
"The principle that all Internet content should be treated equally as it flows through cables and pipes to consumers looks all but dead.
The FCC's proposed rules address a federal appeals court decision striking down regulations that had prevented broadband providers from developing agreements with companies for faster streaming of video and other content. As journalists create more video and other rich media for users, delivery speeds in the "last mile" — the final connections to consumers — take on more importance. Some net neutrality advocates fear that giving preferential treatment to content providers that can afford the higher speeds could leave smaller organizations and startups eating dust in the slow lanes. Net neutrality supporters reacted angrily to reports about the proposed rules. Free Press CEO and President Craig Aaron said in a statement that the FCC was "aiding and abetting the largest ISPs in their efforts to destroy the open Internet."
Giving ISPs the green light to implement pay-for-priority schemes will be a disaster for startups, nonprofits and everyday Internet users who cannot afford these unnecessary tolls. These users will all be pushed onto the Internet dirt road, while deep pocketed Internet companies enjoy the benefits of the newly created fast lanes.
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler responded to critics Wednesday, Time reported. He denied a "turnaround in policy" and said:
The same rules will apply to all Internet content. As with the original Open Internet rules, and consistent with the court’s decision, behavior that harms consumers or competition will not be permitted.”

Reuters finance writer Felix Salmon is headed for Fusion. He tells why on Medium:

“Fusion, in case you’re not familiar with it, is a joint venture between ABC and Univision. It’s a TV channel aimed mainly at millennials, whose only real guiding rule is that it’s going to stay away from anything conventional…

“But the core of what I do at Fusion will be post-text. Text has had an amazing run, online, not least because it’s easy and cheap to produce. When it comes to digital storytelling, however, the possibilities — at least if you have the kind of resources that Fusion has — are much, much greater. I want to do immersive digital stuff, I want to make animations, I want to use video, I want to experiment with new ways of communicating in a new medium.”

Britain NSA Surveillance

Emma Gilbey Keller has resigned from The Guardian

Several months after her controversial column was removed from its website, Emma Gilbey Keller has formally resigned from The Guardian.

"I haven't written for The Guardian by my own choice since they took my column down in January before contacting or consulting me," Keller told Poynter in an email. "I thought long and hard about whether or not to continue working for them and eventually decided to resign, which I formally did last month."

The Guardian confirmed Keller's resignation.

Keller was a Guardian contributor since January 2012, hosting its lifestyle series "The Living Hour" among other duties. In January of this year, Keller wrote about the public way Lisa Bonchek Adams, who has Stage 4 breast cancer, was chronicling her experience with the disease over Twitter and on her blog.

Several days later, her husband, former New York Times executive editor and columnist Bill Keller, also wrote a column about Adams. Neither column was particularly sympathetic to Adams – many thought they came off as critical (especially Bill's, which implied that people with cancer were more heroic if they suffered in stoic silence) – and Adams herself expressed her displeasure with both columns. Emma's, she said, used quotes that Adams gave months ago as part of what she thought was a private conversation. Adams said she had no idea Keller was planning on writing about her until the column went online. She also said both articles contained inaccuracies; the Times column sported a correction about the number of Adams' kids.

Emma's article was soon taken down, and a column from Guardian's reader's editor Chris Elliott explained why: (more...)

CNN Digital sees big jump in unique visitors during coverage of Malaysian airliner


The mystery surrounding missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 — which CNN covered exhaustively on TV for weeks after the disappearance — appears to have been good for CNN's online business, too.

CNN's digital properties saw 76 million unique visitors in March, according to a press release citing comScore figures. That's a 13 percent increase from the 67 million monthly uniques it averaged in 2013. Total page views in March were 1.9 billion, in line with the 2013 average.

In a press release, CNN cited "extensive coverage of the Malaysian airliner, the conflict in Ukraine, Academy Awards, Washington mudslide and other major news events." (more...)
1 Comment

How did you/will you remember the spellings of state names?

Now that we'll be spelling state names out in full, perhaps this is merely a way to remember that there was, once, another way.
Do you have any tips or tricks that helped you remember the shortened version of state names? (Before I came to Poynter, most of my reporting happened in Missouri, which was easy with just Mo.) But what about Pennsylvania (Pa.)? Wisconsin (always Wis., never Wisc.)?

And now that things are changing, do you have any tips or tricks that help you remember how to spell those names out correctly? Other than consulting the AP Stylebook, the dictionary or Google?

My editor, Andrew Beaujon, uses this Sammy Kershaw song to help him remember how to spell Tennessee.

And of course, there's "Oklahoma!"

Tweet your ideas to me @kristenhare or email them to khare@poynter.org.
USA contour_depositphotos

AP: Spell out names of states in stories

AP is not done rocking the journalism world with style changes.
The following guidance went out on the AP wire Wednesday: "Effective May 1, the AP will spell out state names in the body of stories." You will still use abbreviations in datelines, photo captions, lists, etc.

The change "also applies to newspapers cited in a story," the guidance says. "For example, a story datelined Providence, R.I., would reference the Providence Journal, not the Providence (R.I.) Journal." (For what it's worth, you don't have to call that jurisdiction the "State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations." Rhode Island works fine.)

Full note: (more...)

Judge orders former Village Voice reporter to turn over documents

New York Post
A federal judge has ordered journalist Graham Rayman to turn over documents he gathered while reporting on police misconduct, Rich Calder reports in the New York Post.

Rayman, a former Village Voice reporter, is the author of the Village Voice series and the book “The NYPD Tapes," which details police misconduct using recordings from Adrian Schoolcraft, who was also a police officer.
The items include statements by Schoolcraft, e-mails that the Brooklyn cop sent Rayman and a memo from Schoolcraft regarding “NYPD misconduct.” Schoolcraft filed a $50 million lawsuit in 2010 against the city alleging he was forced to spend time in a mental ward after saying cops at the 81st Precinct fudged crime stats.
In 2010, This American Life featured the story.


MediaWireWorld: American journalist held in Ukraine, journalists kicked out of Egyptian courtroom

American journalist Simon Ostrovsky was captured in Eastern Ukraine, Brian Ries reported on Tuesday for Mashable. Ostrovsky is a reporter for VICE News. On Wednesday, Matt McAllester reported in Time that Time's Berlin correspondent, Simon Shuster, and four other journalists were also detained on Monday but were later released.
The journalists were traveling in a car in the separatist-held town of Slavyansk when they were stopped at a checkpoint by armed separatists, said Shuster, who is now in the city of Donetsk. Shuster, a Ukrainian photographer and a British photojournalist for VICE left Slavyansk the morning after their detention. A Russian photographer who was part of the group chose to stay in Slavyansk.

On Wednesday, Taylor Berman reported about Ostrovsky for Gawker.

A spokeswoman for a pro-Russian militia in eastern Ukraine confirmed on Wednesday that the group has detained Vice News journalist Simon Ostrovsky on suspicion of spying and other "bad activities."

Daily Mail publishes fictional account of real trial

The Daily Mail | The Telegraph
On Tuesday night, Joe Kovac Jr. sat down and did a search to see how a murder trial in Macon, Ga., was getting covered elsewhere. That led him to The Daily Mail's James Nye, whose account of the trial begins with a sentence that is fictional. Kovac, a reporter with The (Macon, Ga.) Telegraph, knows it was wrong because he sat in the front row of the Georgia courtroom Monday morning and saw the whole thing for himself.

He tweeted about the Mail's bizarre account Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.

The family didn't didn't listen to the killer confess, Kovac said. (more...)

FAA will investigate drone that buzzed pot rally

KMGH | The Cannabist FAA officials are investigating a drone that flew over a 4/20 rally at Denver's Civic Center Park Sunday, KMGH-TV reports. Police asked two men to leave the top of a nearby building.
Police did not file an incident report, and could not tell 7NEWS their names, where they were from and if they were working for a production company.
In not exactly surprising news, some members of the crowd noticed the robot whizzing above their heads, the TV station reported.   It didn't belong to Denver police, Denver Post City Editor Larry Ryckman reported on Twitter. Also via Ryckman, here's video of the drone:

It’s Shakespeare’s birthday

The Guardian | Huffington Post | BuzzFeed | BBCThe New York Times | Business Insider

Happy birthday, William Shakespeare. We think, at least, that this is the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare's birth (and also the anniversary of his death.) In honor of the day we think Shakespeare was probably born, then, let's celebrate with some journalistic offerings, and a little of the Bard's own faux-tweets thrown in, too.


Gannett’s broadcast revenue soars, circulation revenue slips

Gannett | USA Today Revenue from broadcasting in Gannett's first quarter just about doubled over the same period a year earlier, the company announced in an earnings report Wednesday. Gannett attributed the 99.5 percent rise in broadcast revenue to its acquisition of Belo, as well as Winter Olympics, political advertising and retransmission revenue. On a pro-forma basis (making comparisons as if Gannett had acquired Belo's stations at the beginning of last year), retransmission revenue was up 66 percent over the first quarter of 2013. Revenue at Gannett's publishing properties was down 3.3 percent overall for the quarter. Advertising revenue was down about 5 percent worldwide and about 6 percent in the U.S., and circulation revenue fell by 1.4 percent, which the company attributes in part to "lower circulation revenue at local domestic publishing operations." Looking at the company's fourth-quarter results earlier this year, Poynter's Rick Edmonds wrote that squishy circulation figures raised "the concern that capturing revenue from new digital subscribers and pairing 'all access' print/digital bundles with a big price increase could be a one-time revenue event." In a statement accompanying the release, President and CEO Gracia Martore said USA Today's "butterfly edition" in local papers "continues to gain significant traction with subscribers." In a conference call with analysts for fourth-quarter results, Edmonds reported, Martore said the expanded USA Today offering "could provide the rationale for another round of price increases" later this year. Digital revenue was up about 3 percent, mostly due to sales at its CareerBuilder business. Gannett's 120 or so web publishing properties had 67.5 million unique visitors between them, the report says.

Tuesday, Apr. 22, 2014

Dorian Nakamoto: ‘I’ll keep my bitcoin account’

In a video filmed alongside Andreas M. Antonopoulos, who is writing a book about bitcoin, Dorian Satoshi Nakamoto again says he's not Satoshi Nakamoto, bitcoin's founder. Newsweek last month said he was. "Of course if I was the real creator I would never use my real name," Nakamoto says. He says he received a bitcoin account from Antonopoulos and is "very thankful for you, all these people in U.S., Europe, in Asia, in Africa, in South America who supported me throughout." He says 2,000 people donated. "I'll keep my bitcoin account for many, many years, and hopefully I can also contribute as you did to me," Nakamoto says. Last month, Nakamoto said he'd hired a lawyer and that his "prospects for gainful employment has been harmed because of Newsweek's article." Newsweek issued a statement March 7 saying it stands by its story.
Boston Globe _AP

Boston Globe explores sale of headquarters

The Boston Globe The Boston Globe will explore a sale of its headquarters, Beth Healy reports. The newspaper's next home will "reflect our culture of excellence and the direction our business is headed over the next few decades," Globe chief executive Mike Sheehan wrote in a memo to employees. He also tells them "don't start packing boxes quite yet." (Memo below.)
The Boston Globe building (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, file)
The Globe's current building includes its printing facilities. Healy says the building may be worth as much as $70 million. John Henry bought the Globe last year for $70 million cash. The Washington Post's former owners agreed last November to sell its building for $159 million. The paper is considering a new home that figures prominently in a Dan Brown novel. Rick Edmonds wrote last year about the logic of selling newspaper buildings. Not only do many such publications have smaller headcounts, they often occupy large parcels of land "particularly attractive to developers, which might otherwise need to assemble a suitable property from several owners." Here's Sheehan's memo: (more...)

Images from Earth Day 2014

Maybe Earth Day lost a bit of its usual ability to grab headlines because of a late Easter, which also happened to fall on a pot holiday, followed by the 2014 Boston Marathon. Regardless, here are some images Associated Press photographers shot on Earth Day from around the world. Some are lovely, some pretty depressing, and one is just puzzling. Aren't beauty queens already supposed to be about saving the earth?
Kashmiri women row a boat filled with weeds after cleaning the Dal Lake on Earth Day, on the outskirts of Srinagar, India, Tuesday, April 22, 2014. The weed-clogged Dal Lake is central to Kashmir’s tourist trade and efforts are being made to rescue the lake. In the past two decades the lake has shrunk by more than half, according to environmental study reports. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin)

A woman walks near an Apple store with the Apple logo partially changed to green to mark Earth Day in Beijing, China, Tuesday, April 22, 2014. A new global initiative timed to coincide with Tuesday's celebration of the annual Earth Day offers free recycling of all its used products and vows to power all of its stores, offices and data centers with renewable energy to reduce the pollution caused by its devices and online services. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)