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When April Fools’ Day goes wrong

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When April Fools’ jokes fall flat, they can really fall flat. Just ask the editors of The Cavalier Daily, the student newspaper of the University of Virginia. Business Insider writer Peter Jacobs reports that for this year’s April Fools’ issue, the newspaper’s editors decided to run a phony story making light of the case of Martese Johnson, the African-American UVA student who was beaten and bloodied by agents of the state’s Alcoholic Beverage Control. In a piece titled “ABC agents tackle Native American student outside Bodo’s Bagels,” the paper pretends to report on a similar incident involving a different marginalized population and uses such fake names as “Strong Buffalo,” “Dances with Wolves,” and “Rabbit in the Grass.” After outraged students began complaining, the paper’s Managing Board pulled the piece offline and issued an apology. Read more

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Most memorable stories of 2014

S. Mitra Kalita is the executive editor of Quartz, on Poynter’s adjunct faculty, and a Spencer Fellow at Columbia University. She tweets @mitrakalita.

A friend of mine recently pondered the role of memory in journalism, saying an information overload has robbed his recall. Sometimes it feels like stories aren’t read as much as Facebooked, tweeted, toggled all day long. What actually gets absorbed, retained, understood?

This was my dilemma as Poynter asked me to compile the top 10 stories of 2014. Insecure about whether the best journalism had actually reached me, my inclination was to crowdsource the list. That felt dishonest. Key takeaway of my transition to digital media: only authenticity wins the internet.

So here are my picks, based solely on the top stories I remember from 2014. Read more

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Career Beat: Dan Lyons named editor-in-chief at Valleywag

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • Dan Lyons is now editor-in-chief at Valleywag. Previously, he was a marketing fellow at HubSpot. (Re/code)
  • Rachel Racusen will be vice president of communications at MSNBC. Previously, she was associate communications director for the White House. (Playbook)
  • Jeff Fager will be an executive producer at “60 Minutes”. Previously, he was chairman of CBS News. (Politico)
  • Nitasha Tiku is now a west coast senior writer at The Verge. Previously, she was editor-in-chief of Valleywag. (Business Insider)
  • Jason Kravarik is now a producer at CNN. Previously, he was assistant news director at KOIN in Portland, Oregon. (TV Spy)

Job of the day: The Rockford (Illinois) Register Star is looking for an editor. Read more

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Career Beat: Business Insider’s Aaron Gell named editorial director at Maxim

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • John Cook will run investigations at Gawker Media. Previously, he was editor-in-chief of The Intercept. (Poynter)
  • Aaron Gell will be editorial director of Maxim. Previously, he was features editor at Business Insider. (Capital)
  • Maeve Reston will be a reporter with CNN Politics Digital. She is a political reporter with The Los Angeles Times. (Fishbowl DC)
  • Bob Sipchen will be senior editor for the California section at The Los Angeles Times. Previously, he was editor-in-chief of Sierra Magazine. (Email)
  • Cynthia Needham will be deputy business editor at The Boston Globe. She is political editor there. Jon Chesto will be a reporter at The Boston Globe. Previously, he was managing editor of the Boston Business Journal.
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Why NYT journalists are essentially stuck in China

Good morning. Here are 10 media stories.

  1. Why New York Times journalists can’t leave China

    The country's visa backlog puts people currently stationed there "in an unenviable professional position: Should they leave their posts, they can be pretty sure at this point that their editor won’t be able to replace them." (WP) | "At a news conference in Beijing alongside President Obama, China’s leader, Xi Jinping, appeared to draw a link between unfavorable coverage and access for reporters, saying that the visa problems of news organizations were of their own making." (NYT) | NYT editorial: "A confident regime that considers itself a world leader should be able to handle truthful examination and criticism." (NYT)

  2. Washington Post appends multiple editor's notes to Zakaria columns

    David Folkenflik noticed they were up.

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Career Beat: Sam Biddle to leave Valleywag

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • Sam Biddle will be a senior writer at Gawker. Previously, he was co-editor of Valleywag. Nitasha Tiku will assume Biddle’s responsibilities at Valleywag. She is co-editor there. (Business Insider)
  • Polina Marinova is now associate editor of audience engagement at Fortune. Previously, she was social media editor at OZY Media. (@polina_marinova)
  • Karen Leigh is now deputy Middle East bureau chief at The Wall Street Journal. Previously, she was managing editor of Syria Deeply. (@raju)
  • Rachel Orr will be a mobile designer at The Washington Post. Previously, she was a page designer at Express. (The Washington Post)
  • Stephen Bohner is now a mobile producer at The Washington Post. Previously, he was an online producer for The Arizona Republic (The Washington Post)
  • Kyle Brinkman has been named news director for KLFY in Lafayette, Louisiana.
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Career Beat: Joe Weisenthal heads to Bloomberg

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • 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! Read more

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Mashable headquarters. (Image courtesy Mashable)

Mashable, too, heads to Europe

Mashable headquarters. (Image courtesy Mashable)

Mashable headquarters. (Image courtesy Mashable)

Ask Mashable Executive Editor Jim Roberts about his plans for the future and he says — with tongue planted firmly in cheek — that he’s looking to achieve “global domination.”

That may seem ambitious for the top editor of a news organization that until this year had not expanded outside the U.S, but Roberts is serious when it comes to growing the site’s international audience.

On Tuesday, the company announced it would open a London office in October, naming former WorldIrish.com editorial director Blathnaid Healy its U.K. editor.

“I think we’ve only scratched the surface of what we can hope to see in terms of building a global audience,” Roberts said in a phone interview. “The subjects that we focus on really do have global appeal, whether it’s climate coverage or technology news or the latest in digital culture, viral content, memes — these are things that don’t necessarily adhere to geographic and physical boundaries.”

Roberts’ claims aren’t just talk. Read more

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Forest

Should publishers be taking better advantage of evergreen content in their archives?

For most publishers, less than 10 percent of June page views came from traffic to evergreen articles — stories that were more than three days old by Parse.ly’s definition.

Among the publishers included in the analytics company’s data: Upworthy, Conde Nast properties, The Atlantic properties, Fox News, The New York Post, Mashable, Slate, Business Insider, The Daily Beast, The Next Web and The New Republic.

Nearly half of the publishers see less than 5 percent of their web traffic attributed to content that is more than three days old, according to Parse.ly:

parselyevergreen

Unsurprisingly, Parse.ly found that topic-specific sites generally received a higher percentage of traffic from evergreen stories than breaking-news sites did. Upworthy doesn’t include timestamps in its stories, and many of Slate’s pieces are less time-sensitive than stories from The New York Post or Fox News and thus more likely to have a long shelf life of shareability. Read more

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Publishers resurface evergreen content; Thailand’s the place to be for drone journalism

Here’s our roundup of the top digital and social media stories you should know about (and from Andrew Beaujon, 10 media stories to start your day):

— New York magazine is posting old content to its Facebook page, and Business Insider is doing so on its homepage, according to Digiday’s Ricardo Bilton. How timestamp-transparent should publishers be when resurfacing evergreen stories?

— Drone journalism won’t take off in South Africa or the U.S. anytime soon, according to Sydney Pead at PBS MediaShift. But in Thailand, “it’s considered a hobby” — and easier than playing Playstation 3 you can get some nice places to stay.For more info please visit : http://yourkohsamuivillas.com/.

— A new Twitter bot called @congressedits tracks Wikipedia edits from computers on Capitol Hill. Read more

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