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Uncertain Future for NY Times Reporter Protecting Confidential Source

New York Times reporter James Risen

New York Times reporter James Risen, photo via Alex Menendez, UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism

It’s been more than three months since the Supreme Court turned down an appeal from Pulitzer-winning New York Times investigative reporter James Risen, who continues to face the looming threat of jail over his refusal to reveal a confidential source.

Back in June, the Supreme Court basically sided with the government by turning down Risen’s appeal related to a case whereby prosecutors are attempting to secure evidence in what they say is a national security prosecution.

In turn, journalists contend the government is infringing upon Risen’s press freedom by demanding he turn over a confidential source from a chapter in his 2006 book, State of War. Read more

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What To Read Today: Interview With Buzzfeed’s Jonah Peretti

If you only read one thing on the Internet today, this is it. And it will probably be all you have time to read, clocking in at the 91 minute mark according to Medium’s estimation.

(But hey, if your Tweetdeck is down and Feedly’s under attack, you should have more time than usual to lean in to a piece like this. Sorry for the reminder.)

jonahperettiIt’s an eight-part Q&A that reporter Felix Salmon conducted over a few interviews with Jonah Peretti, who helped found two of the most viral, traffic-driving websites on the Internet: Huffington Post, and after leaving HuffPo, Buzzfeed.

If you only read part of it, skip to sections 6, Buzzfeed as Willy Wonka’s Lab, and 7, How to win the Internet. On the whole, it’s a fascinating look into the mind and methods, plus the future and back story, of one of the people who made the Internet and general online mediascape what it is today — for better or worse.

Behind the Scenes at The Guardian During the Edward Snowden Era

snowden_1370814166862_426887_ver1.0_320_240The Guardian has gotten more press in the past year than ever before. This is of course thanks to one Edward Snowden (Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras helped too). News outlets dutifully reported on the NSA leaks with fervor, but for media junkies, the real story went on behind the scenes. Read more

Finalists Announced for 2014 Michael Kelly Award

m.kelly-post-pic-165x300Atlantic Media recently announced four finalists competing for the 11th annual Michael Kelly Award, honoring the “fearless pursuit and expression of truth.”

The award, created in honor of journalist Michael Kelly, is sponsored by Atlantic Media, owners of two publications where Kelly had served as editor, The Atlantic and National Journal. Read more

SXSWi 2014: Glenn Greenwald on Social Media, Surveillance and the Purpose of Journalism

greenwald-sxswSXSW attendees packed into an Austin Convention Center exhibit hall earlier this week to hear from a guest who wasn’t even in town — editor and journalist with First Look Media’s The Intercept, Glenn Greenwald.

Widely known as an associate of Edward Snowden, a former government employee who leaked hundreds of documents on the NSA’s surveillance program, Greenwald was invited to discuss his work and the future of democratic journalism via Skype. In his virtual conversation with Personal Democracy Media editorial director Micah Sifry, Greenwald was his usual unabashed, passionate self expressing his thoughts on the power of social media, government surveillance initiatives, constitutional rights and his role as a journalist:

On social:

For a man who is busy trying to expose what he believes are great injustices to the American public by reporting from all over the world, Greenwald is a pretty active Twitter user. And as the former Guardian writer said Monday, he’s a fan of the platform. “I actually do think it’s a really good medium.” Referring to social as the “biggest difference between today’s online journalism and establishment journalism,” he said its best benefit is that the availability of reader feedback it provides “keeps you honest.”

“I do think online interaction, unpleasant and annoying as it may be, is a really important form of accountability,” Greenwald said. In the old days, legacy media reporters and columnists “were completely insular people who spoke to the world in monologue form … to passive readers. Now, if you are a journalist, you’re going to constantly hear from people … who have a lot of important things to say.”

Read more

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