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Posts Tagged ‘Eric Alterman’

WaPo‘s Rubin Under Fire

The Nation‘s Eric Alterman, author of What Liberal Media?, has taken a blowtorch to WaPo‘s conservative blogger Jennifer Rubin. In an article published Wednesday meant to criticize WaPo as a paper lacking integrity, Alterman hones in on Rubin, who he calls an “attack dog” and accuses her of…a lot of things. None of them positive.

Here’s a dog-bites-man story if there ever was one. Alterman, who once blogged for Media Matters for America, takes issue with a conservative writer with a prominent platform.

First Alterman criticizes some of Rubin’s pre-WaPo work that caused a stir, including a piece she wrote for Commentary Magazine titled “Why Jews Hate Palin.” In the story Rubin wrote that “American Jews” firmly believe that former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is “uncouth, unschooled, a hick, anti-science and anti-intellectual.”

“[Rubin] developed a specialty in venomous attacks on liberal American Jews” at Commentary, Alterman says (side note: Rubin herself is Jewish).

Other razor-sharp bits Alterman throws at Rubin:

  • “Barely a day goes by without a Rubin post filled with nasty name-calling attacks on a group or individual…”
  • “[Rubin is] a writer who cares nothing for the truth, but rather dedicates herself to spewing childish insults at the president of the United States as well as the millions of people who reject her ideological obsessions…”
  • “[W]hile the talk of Nazis and Obama’s alleged love for Islam have been tamed a bit, Rubin’s penchant for hate-filled fantasy has not.”

And so it goes, graph after hate-filled graph.

Predictably, Alterman speaks highly of WaPo‘s liberal blogger Greg Sargent, whom he hails as “a hard-working professional journalist who advances news stories regardless of whether they critique or flatter his own side.” (This part is somewhat inconsistent with Alterman’s criticism of Rubin, given that later in the story, he cites Rubin as tearing into former GOP presidential candidates Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry. He called Rubin’s writing on them “abusive invective.”)

Also predictably, Alterman has favorable things to say about other liberal writers such as Slate‘s Dave Weigel, whom Rubin replaced at WaPo after Weigel resigned in 2010 amid the “journolist” controversy.

Weigel told us he’s “a huge Rubin fan” and his sole criticism of her blog is that interviews she conducts aren’t transcribed in Q&A format. He said he didn’t believe her work at WaPo has hurt the paper’s reputation.

Back to Rubin. She graduated from UC Berkeley with a law degree. She worked as a labor lawyer for 20 years. She’s done countless TV hits, written for Politico, and has been featured by Washingtonian magazine. She has no fears about publicly going after her liberal colleagues like Sargent and Ezra Klein. Alterman identifies her as “a former Hollywood lawyer” who worked “briefly as an editor for the right-wing Pajamas Media and as a blogger for Commentary.”

Once you get past this and the 14 rabidly anti-Rubin graphs, Alterman redirects his venom back to WaPo at large. “It is true that the Washington Post has bigger problems than the serial inaccuracy and incivility of its right-wing blogger,” he writes. “But the question for the house that Ben Bradlee and Katharine Graham built is not merely whether it will survive, but how.”

Though criticism of Rubin makes up the bulk of Alterman’s piece, he told us she’s not his “main concern with the paper. She’s just the one about which [he] chose to focus in this particular article.” As for his own nasty tone toward her, he said he had no personal reasons to attack her and even admitted that he has never met her. “This is my job and I try to do it as well as I can,” he said.

FBDC reached out to Rubin for comment.

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A Spoof on JournoList

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Here’s a satire of conversations from JournoList. Before anyone flies off the handle, this means that it’s a fictional, fake, made-up, invented take on conversations that the author, David Burge of Iowahawke, imagines could have transpired on JournoList.

WaPo’s Ezra Klein, the list’s creator (and destroyer) takes on the role of hipster (the fake Klein uses words like “wassup” and “yo”). The whole gang of journos (TPM’s Josh Marshall, Center for American Progress’s Matthew Yglesias, The Nation’s Eric Alterman and Media Matters’ Eric Boehlert) sound like tweens. To be sure, ex-WaPo blogger Dave Weigel shows up to say his e-mails have been leaked to his editors (and he’s in deep sh-t). Weigel also (fictitiously) uses ProActive on his skin (yes, just like singer Jessica Simpson). Then MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann arrives and invites them all to Chatroulette. The tweens scatter.

A must read. Find the satire here.

See details on the author, Burge, after the jump…

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‘HuffPost Hill’ Seeks Second Winner

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HuffPost’s Ryan Grim tells me HuffPost‘s new feature, “HuffPost Hill”, has had to extend their editing contest by one day because even the winner didn’t catch everything.

That winner was ex-Politico copy editor Campbell Roth.
So the search for a second winner is on. The task: to find the cliches in The Nation’s Eric Alterman‘s piece. The prize: A shout-out in HuffPost Hill.

ALTERCATION AWARD WINNER On Friday, we asked readers to spot all the cliches in the below Eric Alterman paragraph. It turned out to be an impossible task. Politico-copy-editor-turned-law-student Campbell Roth takes the prize for identifying six of them: “proverbial ducks lined up,” “just what the doctor ordered,” “shooting as many blanks as real bullets,” “bad guys,” “proverbial ‘step [or two] in the right direction’” and “let the big fish get away.” (Yes, he used “proverbial” twice.) Campbell also nailed the bonus correction: Barney Frank chairs the House Financial Services Committee, not the Banking Committee. But she missed a few ones hidden in there. A second prize for the reader who spots the remaining cliches and mixed metaphors.

Read Alterman’s graph after the jump…

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HuffPost Asks Readers to Find Cliches and Mixed Metaphors in Alterman’s Writing

Apologies for our tardiness on this one. There’s probably still a little time to get your thoughts into HuffPost Hill on The Nation’s Eric Alterman‘s prose and get that shout-out. The deadline is today.

ALTERCATION – Finding all the cliches and mixed metaphors in this Eric Alterman paragraph is like cutting fish in a barrel with a butter knife. A shout-out in Monday’s HuffPost Hill to the citizen copy editor who can identify all of them, with a bonus point for spotting the factual error:

“And yet even with all its proverbial ducks lined up — a populist crusade is just what the doctor ordered for a divided and dispirited party going into perilous midterm elections — the administration and its lieutenants in Congress are still shooting as many blanks as real bullets at the bad guys. It’s not that their bills are all bullshit, as the Republicans’ clearly are. They contain many worthy measures that would, as almost any fair-minded economist will tell you, provide a proverbial ‘step [or two] in the right direction.’ But somewhere along the line, whether in Obama’s White House, Tim Geithner’s Treasury Department, Barney Frank’s House Banking Committee or Christopher Dodd’s Senate side, a decision was made to let the big fish get away.”

See the story here.

Morning Reading List 05.08.09

Good morning FishbowlDC!

Got a blind item, interesting link, funny note, comment, birthday, anniversary or anything of the sort for Morning Reading List? Drop us a line.

It is day 109 covering the Obama administration and week 14 for us. What we know and what we’re reading this Thursday morning…

NEWSPAPERS | TV | NEWS NOTES | REVOLVING DOOR | JOBS

NEWSPAPERS

WSJ: The proposal under consideration by the Boston Globe‘s largest union includes a pay cut of 8.4 percent and the elimination of lifetime job guarantees held by 190 members in exchange for a $33,000 payment plus severance for each of those guaranteed employees who gets laid off.

TV

How CNN can beat back Fox and MSNBC, from BusinessWeek: In prime time it’s not enough for CNN to lean on its advantages: its bigger reporting staff and middle-course sensibilities. It’s time to embrace a new prime-time ethos for CNN, which encompasses the bona fides of the brand CNN and the fact that, like it or not, on-screen combat is good TV.

MSNBC has announced a new one-hour program hosted by NBC News chief medical editor Dr. Nancy Snyderman. The program will air at NoonET beginning June 29. More at TVNewser.

Jon Friedman on Chris Wallace here: Chris Wallace has a simple philosophy about interviewing his guests on Fox News Sunday, a precept he has followed throughout his distinguished journalism career. “I’m an equal opportunity inquisitor,” he grinned. “My instinct is to go after them with the high hard one.”

PBS’ Jeffrey Brown interviews Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner this afternoon about the results of the bank stress tests. It airs tonight on The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer.

Katie Couric is in Afghanistan- check out pics of her trip on her Facebook page.

NEWS NOTES

Eric Alterman at The Nation thinks the media has ignored Bush-era war crimes. “Even after the disgraceful performance of so many armchair warriors during the run-up to the invasion of Iraq, who would have dared predict the willingness, nay, eagerness, of respected journalists and pundits to argue in favor of purposeful ignorance to potential war crimes?”

NYT: The Amazon Kindle, which not only displays the news but also speaks it with a computerized voice, has been lavished with praise by hopeful newspaper and book executives. But if the Kindle needs to bone up on its pronunciation. In particular, the voice of the Kindle mispronounces “Barack” and “Obama.”

HAT TIPS: Mediabistro, Playbook

REVOLVING DOOR and JOBS after the jump…

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Morning Reading List, 01.28.09

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Good morning Washington.

Got a blind item, interesting link, funny note, comment, birthday, anniversary or anything of the sort for Morning Reading List? Drop us a line or let us know in the tips box below.

We’ve got your morning mix of media Muesli after the jump…

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Morning Reading List, 08.19.08

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Good morning Washington.

Got a blind item, interesting link, funny note, comment, birthday, anniversary or anything of the sort for Morning Reading List? Drop us a line or let us know in the tips box below.

We’ve got your morning mix of media Muesli after the jump…

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Morning Reading List, 08.08.08

4345057.jpg

Good morning Washington.

Got a blind item, interesting link, funny note, comment, birthday, anniversary or anything of the sort for Morning Reading List? Drop us a line or let us know in the tips box below.

We’ve got your morning mix of media Muesli after the jump…

Read more

Morning Reading List, 07.18.08

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Good morning Washington. Above, Luke Russert and James Carville spearhead XM radio’s coverage of the MLB All-Star Game.

Got a blind item, interesting link, funny note, comment, birthday, anniversary or anything of the sort for Morning Reading List? Drop us a line or let us know in the tips box below.

We’ve got your morning mix of media Muesli after the jump…

Read more

Morning Reading List, 03.25.08

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Good morning Washington. It’s Emily Lawrimore’s birthday (Hat Tip: Playbook), the 2008 Dart Award Winners have been announced, Dana Priest and Anne Hull have won yet another award, yesterday was Monica Lewinsky’s 34th birthday and on this day in 1634, the first colonists to Maryland found the settlement of St. Mary’s (Hat Tip: MicCheckRadio).

Quickly navigate Morning Reading List:

REVOLVING DOOR | NEWSPAPERS | TV | ONLINE MEDIA | MAGAZINES | RADIO | WEST WING REPORTAGE | JOBS

  • We asked how your NCAA tourney bracket is doing and you said, “What bracket?”

    REVOLVING DOOR

  • Mary Shaffrey of The Hill and Winston-Salem Journal fame is the new communications director at BIPAC.

  • Mike Allen’s Playbook reports, “Katie Levinson has joined Edelman as senior vice president and political director in its New York Public Affairs practice. Levinson’s background includes serving as communications director and spokeswoman for the RNC, Bush-Cheney ’04, President Bush, Governor Schwarzenegger’s reelection and Mayor Giuliani’s presidential campaign.”

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    NEWSPAPERS

  • New York Times’ Clark Hoyt asks, “So Much Sex, but What’s Fit to Print?”

  • AdAge.com reports, “Five Reasons Why Having a ‘Public Editor’ at the Times and Other Papers No Longer Makes Much Sense”

  • The New York Times’ David Carr reports, “Newspapers’ New Owners Turn Grim”

  • This “Washington Post Moment Of Zen” is brought to you by His Extreme-ness.

  • Variety reports, “Tribune owner hopes to revive embattled Times”

  • One reader wonders why this AP story never mentions Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick’s party (Democrat).

  • The Huffington Post asks, “Did Only Two Papers Feature 4,000 Iraq Deaths Across Their Front Pages?”

  • Politico’s Michael Calderone reports, “For days, the Obama campaign refused to confirm where the senator and his family were heading on a short Easter vacation, even as rumors spread among the press corps that they were bound for the Virgin Islands. So that presented a conundrum for news organizations: Should they send a correspondent on the — presumably enjoyable — assignment to the Caribbean, to investigate the white sand beaches and clear blue waters? As it turns out, CNN was the lone cable network to play a game of ‘Where in the World is Barack Obama?’ Chris Welch, an off-air producer covering the Obama campaign since the Iowa caucuses, headed out to the islands.”

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    TV

  • TVNewser has a round-up of cable news coverage in “The 2008 Cable Watch”

  • Jake Tapper: ABC’s Man of the Hours

  • Politico: “Despite criticism, Fox’s Wallace keeps ‘Obama Watch’ ticking

  • The Huffington Post reports, “Fox Hosts Claim Friday’s Walk-Off Was A Joke”

  • New York Times’ Brian Stelter reports,Chris Wallace took some of his Fox colleagues to task, claiming that they took Senator Barack Obama’s comments about race out of context.”

  • MarketWatch’s Jon Friedman writes, “One of the mysteries of television is why PBS’ Tavis Smiley continues to fly below the radar. He has an easy charm and a keen curiosity, and deserves to be better known.”

  • Variety reports, “While preparing to take Fox Television to the Supreme Court over a handful of expletives, the Federal Communications Commission let expire a separate indecency fine against the network for airing a movie with multiple repetitions of one of the same expletives. The FCC blamed a recent federal appeals court decision, saying it has created confusion over how the agency can enforce its indecency rules.”

  • The Kalb Report has the video of “Covering the World: A Conversation with Christiane Amanpour

  • New York Times reports,Bob Schieffer, right, the host of the CBS News Sunday morning program ‘Face the Nation’ since 1982, has agreed to postpone his planned retirement. ‘Yes, I’m going to remain with the show after the inauguration,’ Mr. Schieffer, 71, said Friday.”

  • A GWU release announced, “The George Washington University’s Prime Movers Program recently received a gift of $1,500 from the Washington, D.C.-area chapter of the Radio-Television News Directors Association to help purchase broadcast equipment and train students producing local high school radio and television programs. The Prime Movers Program is a partnership between Washington-area news media and local high schools in collaboration with GW’s School of Media and Public Affairs. Its goal is to provide journalism education and hands-on training in minority and diverse high schools.”

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    ONLINE MEDIA

  • Nielsen Online Names Top 30 News Sites

  • Why are Web and Print STILL So Separate?”

  • A release announced, “Government Executive Media Group, a division of Atlantic Media Company, today launched NextGov, an interactive online platform serving the complete federal technology community. Breaking the traditional media model of one-way reporting by journalists toward readers, NextGov is designed to foster a multilayered dialogue between and among federal IT officials, program managers, private sector officials and outside observers about building the high-performance, results-driven federal agencies of the future. NextGov.com is designed specifically to support the needs of federal IT decision-makers, delivering three essential components to the decision-making process.”

  • All Things Digital’s Kara Swisher reports, “In February, for the first time ever, Arianna Huffington’s liberal political mega-blog and news site, the Huffington Post, has apparently surpassed the longtime mighty blog leader, Matt Drudge of the conservative/populist-leaning Drudge Report, according to recent traffic data reports from both comScore (SCOR) and Nielsen Online.”

  • Machinist reports, “The Wall Street Journal’s Web site is already (secretly) free”

  • The AP reports, “Details on Some of the Online Ad Networks Formed by Traditional Media Companies.”

  • BeetTV reports, “The Washington Post, long an innovator in expanding its online presence, has created a popular application on Facebook with some 350,000 downloads, Jim Brady, Executive Editor of the washingtonpost.com tells Beet.TV. The application is a kind of political badge which members put on their Facebook pages, showing their political leanings from liberal to conservative.”

  • Billboard reports, “Search for an artist on any of the popular search engines, and the top three results are practically guaranteed: the artist’s official Web site, Wikipedia entry and MySpace page — often in that order. But while artists and their handlers devote massive attention to the Web site and MySpace, the Wikipedia page is often overlooked. Recent data suggests they may want to reconsider their priorities.”

  • The AP reports, “Traditional media companies trying to stem the flow of advertising dollars to Google and other large Internet companies are increasingly building ad networks of their own, anchored by their brands. The latest, Forbes Inc., announced Monday that it will start selling ads this spring for about 400 financial blogs. In recent months, Conde Nast, Viacom Inc., CBS Corp. and other major media companies also have unveiled topic-specific ad networks to lure advertisers that want to buy more ads than any single site can sell.”

  • Fortune reports, “As the United States slips into recession, advertising spending is set to fall — spelling trouble for traditional media companies already battered by Internet upstarts.”

  • Media Daily News reports, “A full-blown recession would probably take a substantial bite out of traditional media, according to a survey of industry analysts and independent researchers. But digital media will benefit from these draw-downs as financially strapped marketing executives shift dollars online, seeking more transparent measures of ROI. In many cases, a recession would simply accelerate a long-term trend that is already underway.”

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    MAGAZINES

  • In Washington Post Magazine, Gene Weingarten writes, “One man with more courage than brains sacrifices himself on the altar of punditry, and, in so doing, fails to redeem us all”

  • His Extreme-ness reports, “During Sunday’s ‘This Week With George Stephanopoulos’ roundtable on Barack Obama and Jeremiah Wright, Clarie Shipman offered some thoughts. Then came her husband, Jay Carney. He said, ‘I will agree with my wife.’ Good move. Probably smart to maintain peace in that household. But hardly unique for Jay Carney.”

  • CNet News.com has a Q&A with Wired founder John Battelle talking “blog roll-ups, Google, and Federated Media’s future”

  • Monocle: Mr. Magazine’s Notable International Launch of the Year + An interview with Tyler Brule

  • MinOnline reports, “min has put together a one-day program that’s all about the magazine brand and its relationship with new media, from improving your Web play to making the right call on mobile opportunities; from appealing to clients who want to see more than a banner/print bundle to engaging your customers with meaningful content offerings. Don’t miss out on the publishing event of the year! Go to www.minday2008.com for registration and Early Bird Rate details”

  • The New Yorker’s Eric Alterman chronicles “The death and life of the American newspaper.”

  • New York Daily News reports, “Gore Vidal is wasting no time sticking knives in the corpse of his old foe William F. Buckley Jr. In an attack brutal even by Vidal standards, Gore writes on TruthDig.com that the National Review founder was ‘a hysterical queen’ and ‘a world-class American liar. … Buckley was often drunk and out of control.’ Vidal blames the ‘tired hacks’ at Newsweek for letting Buckley’s ‘creepy,’ ‘brain-dead’ son, Christopher, talk them into a reverential cover story on his father. Vidal concludes, ‘RIP WFB — in hell.’ We asked Christopher and Newsweek if they’d care to fire back. They declined.”

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    RADIO

  • Washington Post’s Howard Kurtz writes, “With BlogTalkRadio, the Commentary Universe Expands”

  • Washington Post reports, “As the audience for AM and FM radio declines, start-up entrepreneurs and giant media companies alike search for the ‘next radio’ — a way to make money by helping listeners discover new music. Online music providers such as Pandora, Imeem and Last.fm provide an early glance at that next chapter in radio history.”

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    JOBS

  • National Journal Group is looking for a Staff Writer/Online Producer.

  • The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer is looking for a Desk Assistant.

  • The CATO Institute is looking for a Director, Communications.

  • The Hill Newspaper is looking for an Advertising Executive.

  • Widmeyer Communications is looking for a Senior Associate.

  • Roll Call TV is looking for an Intern.

  • AARP is looking for a Senior Manager, Media Relations.

  • Politico is looking for a National Account Executive.

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    Hat Tips: DCRTV, TVNewser, IWantMedia, Romenesko, MediaBistro, JournalismJobs, JournalismNext

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