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Salon apologizes for calling Nicki Minaj’s speech ‘savage’

Salon on Monday apologized for an errant tweet (since deleted) that called Nicki Minaj’s acceptance speech at the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards a “savage, expletive-laden rant,” responding to criticism from readers who said the tweet was racist.

The bulletin, sent this morning from Salon’s main Twitter account, promoted a story summarizing a heated moment at last night’s VMA awards, when Minaj called host Miley Cyrus a bitch for remarks she made in the press. “The look on Miley’s face during Nicki Minaj’s savage, expletive-laden rant says it all,” the tweet read:

Salon quickly reversed itself, deleting the original tweet and posting a revised version that called Minaj’s rebuttal “raw” and “righteous.”

But it was too late. Read more


VICE journalists charged with terrorism in Turkey

Journalists for VICE News were formally charged with “working on behalf of a terrorist organization” by a Turkish court Monday, days after they were arrested by authorities for lack of proper accreditation.

The VICE crew was reporting in the city of Diyarbakir in the country’s predominantly Kurdish region when they were arrested last week for lack of proper government identification, “security sources” told Reuters Friday.

Kevin Sutcliffe, VICE’s head of news programming for Europe, called the terrorism charges “baseless and alarmingly false” in a statement, saying the arrests represented an attempt to “intimidate and censor” the journalists.

“VICE News condemns in the strongest possible terms the Turkish government’s attempts to silence our reporters who have been providing vital coverage from the region,” Sutcliffe said in the statement. Read more


Sign of print times: California daily moves to twice a week

Central Valley Business Times

The Madera Tribune, the only daily newspaper in the California county adjacent to booming Fresno, will no longer be a daily as of Wednesday.

The decision seems part and parcel of melancholy times for local mainstream media: it will move to a twice-weekly schedule, publishing each Wednesday and Sunday instead of five days a week.

“That change is due to tough economic circumstances, which nearly all newspapers seem to face these days,” Charles Doud, the editor and principal owner, told readers last week.

“Other small dailies in the San Joaquin Valley have cut back on publication frequency — some to become weekly, and some to become twice weekly. Examples of these are the Turlock Journal, the Hollister Freelance and the Gilroy Dispatch.”

He was also rather candid about one source of his changing circumstances:

“In the long run, California’s English language newspapers are going to continue to have a hard time because so much of the population is not conversant or literate in English.”

According to Doug Caldwell, the editor-publisher of the Central Valley Business Times, the paper sits in “both a bedroom community to Fresno and a pass-through for those heading to Yosemite [National Park].”

Madera County, for example, has the only children’s hospital between Los Angeles and the Bay Area/Sacramento, he noted by email. Read more

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The legacy of puzzle master Merl Reagle and the gamification of news

Merl Reagle, a crossword-crafting master, died Aug.  22.  (Credit: Tampa Bay Times)

Merl Reagle, a crossword-crafting master, died Aug. 22. (Credit: Tampa Bay Times)

Merl Reagle had the soul of a copy editor and the style of a stand-up comedian. During his too-short life he was both of those and much more: musician, songwriter, author, and one of the world’s great puzzle masters. If you love crosswords – not cross words – send up a prayer of thanks to Merl.

My friend Merl died suddenly last week at the age of 65. Reports said the cause was an attack of acute pancreatitis. I am not writing this to note his passing but to celebrate a remarkable life spent swimming in the English language. “You need two things to do what I do,” he once told me. “You have to be passionate about words, and you have to be curious about trivial stuff on lots of different topics.”

Merl created his first puzzle at the age of 6. Read more


BBC host after on-air interruption: ‘It was a blue whale! Live!’


On Sunday, the BBC’s Steve Backshall reported live from Monterey, California, for the show “Big Blue Live,” when he got word that a blue whale had been spotted. Mashable’s Blathnaid Healy wrote about the broadcast on Monday, noting it was the first time a blue whale had been broadcast on live TV.

“This is one of the most extraordinary things I’ve ever seen,” Backshall said.

Read more

New press freedoms for students in North Dakota (yes, North Dakota)

The Associated Press

Did you figure on North Dakota as a free speech bastion?

It appears that journalism students working at state public high school and college papers will do so with a lot more confidence in their own legal protections, according to The Associated Press:

The measure that took effect this month guarantees student journalists the right to exercise free speech in school-sponsored media, regardless of whether the school supports the media financially or students participate as part of a class. The law puts North Dakota among a few states that have enacted legislation meant to counteract a 1980s U.S. Supreme Court ruling that said limits can be set on the free-press rights of high school students.

That 1986 ruling offered a seemingly expansive view of a school’s authority when it came to discipline. Read more

Larry King

Larry King live plots Larry King dead

Good morning.

  1. CNN legend also plans to freeze himself

    Life's not been quite the same for workaholic, vain, celebrity-loving Larry King since CNN pulled the plug on the gabfest icon. He's now 81, on his seventh marriage (this one's gone for 18 years with just one brief hiatus after his fling with his much-younger wife's sister) and clearly obsessed with his death. So Larry King live is mulling Larry King dead. "King would love to attend his own funeral. He would watch invisibly over the proceedings and laugh. 'I would like the ceremony to begin, 'Today we are honoring a 160-year-old man who was caught in bed by an irate husband,’" King said in a characteristically droll Mark Leibovich profile.  ‘"And the funeral is late because it took six days to wipe the smile off his face.’"

    He wanted Mario Cuomo to speak, but Cuomo's gone.

Read more

Sunday, Aug. 30, 2015

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An expert’s forecast — Canada will have few if any print newspapers by 2025

Ken Goldstein, a leading media business analyst in Canada, has just published a grim prediction for legacy news outlets north of the border: “In 2025, it is likely that there will be few, if any, printed daily newspapers.”

For good measure, Goldstein adds, “there might be no local broadcast stations in Canada” 10 years from now.

canada-papers-circWhile noting declines in advertising, classified particularly, Goldstein bases his bleak view on newspaper circulation trends (see graph).  Daily paid circulation as a percentage of Canadian households, he writes, has fallen from just under 50 percent in 1995 to 20 percent in 2014.

If those declines continue, circulation will amount to only 5 to 10 percent of households in 2025, too little, Goldstein says, “to support a viable print business model for most general interest daily newspapers.”

He adds in his August 20 paper, “Canada’s Digital Divides,”

Thus, Canada’s daily newspapers now are engaged in a 10-year race against time and technology to develop an online business model that will enable them to preserve their brands without print editions, and – even more difficult – to try to develop new kinds of economic bundles (or other kinds of economic arrangements) that will enable their online presence to maintain their current journalistic scope.

Read more

VICE News crew faces terrorism accusations in Turkey

Reporters on assignment for VICE News in southeast Turkey are scheduled to appear in court Monday to face accusations of terrorism, allegations the international media company says are unsubstantiated.

The VICE crew was reporting in the city of Diyarbakir in the country’s predominantly Kurdish region when they were arrested for lack of proper government identification, “security sources” told Reuters Friday.

Two journalists from VICE UK, British citizens Jake Hanrahan and Philip Pendlebury, are among the crew. Along with a translator and one other colleague, they were reporting on escalating tensions between police and the youth wing of a pro-Kurdistan Workers’ Party.

No formal charges have been filed against the journalists yet, according to a spokesman for VICE News.

Since news of the journalists’ arrests spread Friday, several advocacy groups have called for their immediate release. Read more

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Front pages from Hurricane Katrina, then and now

Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast on August 29, 2005. On August 30, newspapers around the country led with the devastating storm. You can see a collection of fronts from around the world in Newseum’s archives starting August 30 and running to September 4. Here are front pages from three newspapers on August 30, 2005 and August 30, 2015. You can slide between the two to see the stories then and now.

The Times-Picayune:

Sun Herald:

Montgomery Advertiser:

!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);;js.src=p+'://';fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document, 'script', 'twitter-wjs'); Read more


Saturday, Aug. 29, 2015

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Front pages from Hurricane Katrina’s 10th anniversary

Saturday marked 10 years since Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast. Here’s a collection of front pages from Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and a few other places that marked the anniversary on Saturday. You can also find a collection of news coverage of the anniversary from Carlie Kollath Wells at | The Times-Picayune here. Via Newseum:














!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);;js.src=p+'://';fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document, 'script', 'twitter-wjs'); Read more


Friday, Aug. 28, 2015


New York Daily News resumes gun control crusade

The front page of today’s New York Daily News is a familiar sight to those who track the tendencies of tabloid wood.

Below a blood-spattered handgun, the words “America’s full of it” appear in large type. Above that, the Daily News counts the dead since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

“Since Newtown, 84,523 people have been killed by guns in the U.S,” the page reads. “We cry. We get angry. We demand action. Then we forget…until the next time”:

Image via Newseum.

Image via Newseum.


The front exemplifies what has become a typical response for the Daily News in the wake of high-profile shootings. Within days of the massacre at Sandy Hook, the tabloid prominently featured President Obama’s pledge to pass legislation curbing gun violence:

Image via Newseum.

Image via Newseum.

Read more

This week on Medium: Mag covers used to have more clothes, less words

Happy Friday and happy weekend reading. Here’s our weekly roundup of things we read about journalism and the media this week on Medium. Thanks to Gurman Bhatia and Katie Hawkins-Gaar for helping curate.

The Evolution of Magazine Covers

Karen X. Cheng and Jerry Gabra offer a fascinating look at how magazines have changed (or not changed, New Yorker,) over time.

Screen shot/Medium

Screen shot/Medium

They write:

Together, these magazine covers reveal a peek into our history. Sure, we’ve gotten more sexualized. More superficial. We read less. We have shorter attention spans.

But we’ve also gotten more open-minded. At each step along the way, society has pushed the limits of what’s considered acceptable.

When tragedy hits home #WeStandWithWDBJ

Tauhid Chappell writes about previously interning at WDBJ. Read more

Screen shot, The Washington Post

The Washington Post’s homepage redesign was inspired by print

On Wednesday, The Washington Post unveiled the last piece in a site-wide redesign – the homepage.

“The new homepage marks a key milestone in the site-wide reboot led by The Post’s engineering and news teams, one that has been driven by the in-house development of a new publishing platform called Arc,” the Post said in a press release.

So what’s different about it now?

“We actually tried not to make it super different,” said Joey Marburger, director of digital products and design.

The homepage is now more modern, he said, easier to scan and more visual. And what you can’t see may be one of the more important changes.

“The term people use a lot is more dynamic,” Marburger said. “Really what that means for us is we can manipulate and change the homepage faster, at the true pace of news.”

The old homepage was rigid and production-heavy. Read more


Rebekah Brooks poised for high-profile return to News Corp. UK

Financial Times

Former News Corp. executive Rebekah Brooks, who was cleared last year of charges related to the News of the World phone hacking scandal, will soon ascend to the top job in News Corp’s UK division, the Financial Times reported Friday.

According to the Financial Times, which cites “people familiar with the matter,” Brooks will return to News Corp’s executive suite sometime in September. Her appointment is said to coincide with several big moves at News Corp. UK, including the departure of current CEO Mike Darcey and the appointment of a new editor of The Sun, which Brooks helmed in the aughts before she left for the boardroom.

Speculation about Brooks’ future at News Corp. has been swirling in the months since a jury found her not guilty of charges stemming from the hacking scandal. Read more