Morning media roundup: Get used to seeing ‘Obamacare’ in news stories

Language column: Obamacare, the law, may be on the ropes, but Obamacare, the term, is doing great. How did a sneering, partisan term become OK for everyone to use? To the theories:

Chris Cillizza says it came down to Google. He posts a graph showing that by November, “Obamacare” passed “health care reform” and “Affordable Care Act” in searches. “Given that reality,” Cillizza writes, “the White House — and President Obama’s 2012 reelection team — had little choice but to try to throw their arms around the term.”

Elspeth Reeve at The Atlantic Wire and this dandy New York Times graphic credit Jeanne Schulte Scott, who used the term in the Healthcare Financial Management Association’s trade publication.

After the term became widespread, writes Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “the president and his supporters faced a choice. They could keep snubbing the term, leaving it to the law’s critics to define what it stands for. Or they could embrace it and try to put their own spin on it. That’s what the campaign chose to do, going public last Friday on the second anniversary of the law’s signing.”

“Reaganomics” was once derogatory, too, writes David Jackson.

Business corner: American Community Newspapers has sold its Northern Virginia newspapers to a company called HPR Hemlock (Hemlock? A company that buys newspapers is called Hemlock?), reports Caitlin Gibson. Richard Connor, late of MaineToday Media, “will be assisting with the transition,” Gibson writes.

Speaking of MaineToday Media, Al Diamon writes that the company, which announced Tuesday that 75 percent of the company is owned by Donald Sussman, is still mum on who owns the remaining 25 percent.

The Leader-Call of Laurel, Miss., will publish its last edition today.

Still fuming after hearing that Lee Enterprises’ CEO got a half-million-dollar bonus as employees were laid off at two of its Montana papers? Then you might want to consult your doctor before reading this next sentence: Former Scripps exec Mark Contreras received a $4.4 million severance package; the company eliminated 2,500 jobs and closed the Rocky Mountain News when Contreras oversaw the newspaper division.

Azmat Kahn asks why The Washington Post used the pseudonym Roger for a story about the head of the CIA Counterterrorism Center when the AP has reported that his name is Mike. (The Post called him Mike in 2010, too.)

Internet interruptions and spam: The Internet Archive is moving the servers for its Wayback Machine, which will cause some interruptions over the next few days. (Good luck finding my old Geocities page now, future employers!) This won’t be an issue on Saturday, when Anonymous is planning to shut down the Internet. That Pinterest spammer says he was scamming Daily Dot, and, well, this has all gotten kind of confusing.

And finally, anyone flummoxed by Thursday’s Park Slope Food Coop news may enjoy this piece about the “Two Hummus Solution.”

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  • Anonymous

    “How did a sneering, partisan term become OK for everyone to use?”

    I suppose the same way it became OK for anchors on CNN to use the term “tea-baggers” in reference to Tea Party members.

    Kind of like that.