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Posts Tagged ‘Michael Calderone’

The Big Behind

Talk about being behind.

HuffPost this week writes about how MTV is trying to engage the youth vote with a fantasy election game.

But, as it turns out, it really is the early bird that gets the worm. The hell with the late bird.

The NYT had a story eight months ago about how how MTV dropped the “Choose or Loose” campaign and picked up — yeah, you guessed it –  a fantasy election game. They write, “But its campaign coverage will exist more robustly online, on a Web site that promotes voter registration and that will feature a fantasy election game.”

Correction: We initially had the story by Michael Calderone. The story was not by him but a summer intern. The confusion surfaced in a tweet sent by Calderone. His stories have bylines; other HuffPost medias inexplicably sometimes do not. Apologies to Calderone for the mix-up.

Politico’s VandeHei Won’t Talk to Own Reporter

Politico received a series of lashings from several publications after Executive Editor Jim VandeHei and Chief White House Correspondent Mike Allen ran a story criticizing perceived election news bias in WaPo and the NYT.

Dylan Byers, Politico‘s media reporter, wrote a post summarizing the whole thing. And it wasn’t vanilla. He laid out the criticisms, most of which were rather harsh against Politico, even writing about how Politico aggregated the work of the WaPo story VandeHei and Allen found to be biased.

“Allegations such as this led to a wave of criticism from outlets ranging from Talking Points Memo to GQ to the Washington Post’s media blog, as well as stern rebuttals from editors at both the Post and the Times.”

Byers requested comment from VandeHei, his boss, and Allen. Both declined (maybe they worried he’d twist their words?)… Read more

Brokaw Blasts Nerd Prom, More Journos Follow

On Sunday’s “Meet the Press”, Tom Brokaw was analyzing the Presidential race of 2012 when he took a sharp turn into Curmudgeon-ville to take major swipes at Nerd Prom. He is not pleased about the glittering of the White House Correspondents’ Dinner with stars like George Clooney and Charlize Theron. Some people may argue that at last those stars are politically active and aware of what’s going on the world. The same can’t be said for the likes of Kim Kardashian and Lindsay Lohan.

In any event, reaction started pouring in over Twitter as Brokaw’s comments went viral. WSJ’s Neil King welcomed Brokaw’s comments by saying, “Here’s seconding Brokaw’s takedown of the WH Correspondents Dinner. And here’s predicting the day when POTUS says thanks but no thanks.” Longtime Washington political journo and columnist for the Dallas Morning News Carl Leubsdorf told FBDC, “I think he spoke for many of us.” He went on to say, “Tom is spot on. And as the dinner has become glitzier, fewer seats have gone to actual correspondents and more to corporate executives, advertisers and celebrities. The upcoming 100th WHCA anniversary in 2014 might be a perfect time to consider this, though I’m not too hopeful that will happen.” Something that got the attention of HuffPost’s Michael Calderone was Brokaw’s mention of “taking over the Italian embassy.” It just so happens that was the location of the blowout MSNBC after-party. National Correspondent for The Atlantic, James Fallows also agreed with Brokaw, saying, “Good for Tom B!”

Brokaw is one in a procession of Washington journalists who are trashing what the dinner has become. Late last week we reported on U.S. News & World Report’s Susan Milligan,
who also believes celebs ruin the image of the event. Some may also recall WaPo Dana Milbank‘s take on Nerd Prom last April, in which he says journalists have turned themselves into pimps for the politicians and the stars. He intimated that he grew sickened as he started to RSVP for parties and “made other plans for the weekend.” But Brokaw’s blast is a little bit different. First, he has the highest profile of anyone who has criticized the dinner. Second, he doesn’t seem to differentiate between George Clooney and Lindsay Lohan. He wants Hollywood out of the dinner.

It’s interesting to note that while Twitter was having a field day with Brokaw’s comments, neither Betsy Fischer, Exec. Producer for “Meet the Press”, nor host David Gregory made any comments. Watch Brokaw’s comments in the video below.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

 

The American Prospect to Shutter?

The liberal mag, The American Prospect, is in deep trouble, so much so that Editor Kit Rachlis felt the need to let his staff know late last week that the publication is not doing well financially. HuffPost media writer Michael Calderone has the scoop. Key points: If the mag doesn’t raise enough cash it could close in late May. They’re looking to raise $500,000 by summer.

Read here.

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day


Stop and check out the chicks: “Look what I passed on the road today. I wonder how old these little guys are” — CNN Contributor and former White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer. American Urban Radio’s April Ryan remarked, “AWWW! The dad in you made you take the precious shot!”

Drudge whoring at the rental car agency

“Rental car guy: ‘Sorry brah, I get most of my news from Drudge.’ #noproblembrah” — Politico‘s Dave Catanese.

All in a day’s work

“There are days when I feel like I can’t push this rock up the mountain anymore, days when #TheRaceCardProject feels like a boulder.” — NPR’s Michele Norris.

Senator’s wife wishes hubby a happy anniversary

Connie Schultz: “My only advice for wedded bliss: Marry your hero. Happy anniversary, honey – aka Sherrod Brown.”

George Zimmerman journo humor

  • “I need all Florida helicopters to keep an eye out for any white Broncos. #IJS” — NYT‘s Charles Blow.
  • “If you happen to see Zimmerman in line ahead of you at Wendy’s, remember he still has valid permit to carry concealed weapon. So back off.” — Politico‘s Roger Simon.

Reporter talks to himself on Twitter

“@mboyle1 probably not. was just funny. I wouldn’t go out of your way though” — The Daily Caller‘s Matthew Boyle. Hey Boyle, maybe lay off the Mountain Dew and Red Bull today? He followed up by adding, “Haha. Kinda funny though. Guess I got caught talking to myself haha. Bet I end up in @fishbowldc for that one.”

Noteworthy: Politico Playbook published at one of the earliest times in recent memory this morning. Time: 4:45 am. Come on, Jim VandeHei, let Mike Allen sleep!

Hey Speechboy, speed matters

“So why do people care if Bloomberg or the Washington Post was the first to report a fact that within 2 minutes of reporting, everyone knew?” — @speechboy71. HuffPost‘s Michael Calderone has this explanation from a WaPo spokeswoman. “The draft story was not intended to be published until we confirmed that Santorum was suspending his campaign. The draft was inadvertently sent to Bloomberg, with whom The Post has a partnership, through an automated feed. It was not published on our Web site until the news had been confirmed.” Read his full story here.

In England, the sweater vest is a tank top

Politico‘s Emily Schultheis: “Best part of BBC radio interview I did just now: host calling Santorum’s sweater vest a ‘tank top’. Daily Mail Online‘s Toby Harnden, Washington’s official tank top expert, replied to Emily, saying, “It’s the only term recognised in UK! Having to wear a ‘tank top’ still a traumatic childhood memory.”

Necessary Tweet of the Day

“My mother prefers I not curse in my gchat status update ‘from now on.’ Apparently ‘the whole world’ sees that.” — DCGOPGirl.

Peter Ogburn and Eddie Scarry contributed to this report.

CBS “Face the Nation” Partners With Google, Schieffer Plans on Summer Staycation

From the Dept. of Bragiculture…When FBDC showed up Monday at the launch of a new partnership by CBS and Google Plus in Logan Circle, we were greeted with pure, unadulterated love. “I read FishbowlDC everyday,” CBS intern Chad Sinclair said.

Bursting with good spirits, we made our way upstairs of Fathom Creative, where the launch was hosted, and found three open bars placed no more than 25 feet apart. They made damn sure getting a drink wouldn’t be a problem. That, in itself, could have presented a problem. Unfortunately no one got out of control.

Among the first reporters to join the party was Politico‘s party animal Mike Allen. He zipped around the room shaking hands and saying hi to everyone he knew and everyone he didn’t.

Allen left 45 minutes in but was replaced by his colleague Patrick Gavin, who was wearing a blazer with tennis shoes. Gavin told us that Politico Live, Politico’s venture into video news, is a work in progress but said “it’s fun to be a part of [it].”

We soon ran into the star of the party, “Face the Nation” anchor Bob Schieffer. “No!” he said when we asked if he had any summer vacation plans. “I’ll be working my ass off,” he said.

They gave out weird purple socks as party “favors” in honor of Schieffer, known for his striking hosiery (photograph below).

The event was held to unveil an interactive election-coverage feature that CBS and Google will host roughly once a month called “hangouts.” The gist: Voters across the country will be selected to participate in tele-town halls with Schieffer. A new voice-controlled Google software facilitates the discussion. The first hangout is scheduled for Thursday. Excerpts will air on Sunday’s “Face the Nation.”

In a brief party speech Schieffer joked that he’s worried about participants in the hangouts using software that puts “ears and horns” on his face on the screen. “I can’t wait for someone to be rude to me,” he said.

Everyone at the party seemed to admire Scheiffer, chatting him up and speaking fondly of him to one another. “So goes Bob, so goes the network,” we overheard one attendee say.

Notables

Others spotted at the party: CBS White House Correspondents Bill Plante and Norah O’Donnell, Political Director John Dickerson, Washington Bureau Chief Chris Isham, HuffPost‘s Michael Calderone, CNN’s Peter Hamby and the Washington Examiner‘s Nikki Schwab, who was surprisingly verbal even though her rumored policy is to give FBDC the cold shoulder.

Quotable

“I can’t believe FishbowlDC isn’t drinking” — CBS Vice President of Programming Chris Licht.

It’s Helen’s Party and She Can Go If She Wants To

HuffPost‘s media writer Michael Calderone wrote a story Tuesday on White House veteran reporter Helen Thomas being turned down for a full table at the upcoming White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner.

In his first version, Calderone reported that the Association turned down Thomas’ request for a full table. Soon, however, there was a “clarification.” Thomas had always known that as a past president of WHCA she would be able to purchase two tickets for the dinner. But she was greedy. With her impressive resume (which includes a spread in Playboy) she wanted the whole goddamn table. That two ticket offer still stands, Calderone wrote in a parenthesis he added to a later version with a “clarification.”

Is it news to say a former journalist can’t buy a whole table for an event that’s always overcrowded and inevitably has news organizations whining about not having enough seats? It isn’t against Association rules for any one person to buy a table. It just isn’t typically done. “Given how tight the room is (I think we have refunded more than one thousand seat requests this year) I can’t imagine any single person getting a whole table, but I don’t think there is any rule against it,” said SiriusXM’s Julie Mason, who sits on the board. “Usually an unaffiliated member — like a freelancer, or single-member bureau — gets a couple of tickets.”

While the insider letters exchanged between Thomas and the Association are interesting along with the history that she paved the way for female reporters to attend the dinner, the lede was inflated. Helen doesn’t get a table? No one person would likely ever get a table. Not even HuffPost‘s own Arianna Huffington can get all the tables she wants, no matter how much she complains.

What many Washington insiders feel is this: The evening is WHCA’s annual fundraiser, not a celebration of Helen. She is feted, celebrated, awarded and paid tribute at a level that could make a person vomit. Maybe HuffPost would like to give up one of their tables? We can hear Arianna screaming now.

Commenters on the story are sublime. For her: “She deserves a table…this is sickening.” And, “She did journalism and women a favor with her determination, talent and courage. The profession owes her.” And, “Let her have her last harrah [sic] she has earned it!!!!!!!!!!!” Or, “It’s beyond petty of the WHCA to do this to Helen Thomas, they should be ashamed of themselves.” Or, “She earned her place at that table. One comment and she gets fried.” Against her: “I know she is old but we can’t always expect more than what is fair because of it.” And, “Sense of entitlement runs deep in these former elite talking heads.” And, “It’s her choice to go and have a good time or sulk because she’s ONLY being accomodated like former Presidents.” Many questioned why it was a news story in the first place. “I wonder if I write a letter to President Obama for a personal audience and get I turned down, to whom should I submit this for a news story?”

Ultimately, the news is this: Helen can purchase two tickets. It’s her party and she can go if she wants to.

Calderone Gets Scoop on Amanpour

In what has been a very weird news day, in the end, HuffPost‘s Michael Calderone got the scoop that everyone basically already knew: ABC’s Christiane Amanpour is leaving ABC’s “This Week” to start up a new program on CNN International. She’ll remain at ABC.

NYP’s Page Six hinted weeks ago that Amanpour was on her way out the door. But earlier today NYT‘s Brian Stelter committed an online snafu when he tweeted that he’d heard the news from a single source. That was meant to be a Direct Message not a tweet. OOPS! Nonetheless, outlets like Poynter wrote on his premature act extensively and WaPo‘s opinion media blogger Erik Wemple declared him a pioneer journalist.

Soon enough, Calderone weaseled his way in and grabbed the story. We’re not sure who ought to be commended here. Officially Calderone, but unofficially — Page Six?

So now the race is on — will Jake Tapper finally land the “This Week” slot that so many thought he should have already gotten? Come on, Stelter, DM us!

UPDATE: ABC’s George Stephanopoulos will resume hosting “This Week” as well as “GMA.” See the memos from CNN’s Jim Walton and Amanpour after the jump…

Read more

Happy Drudge Day!

Don’t be surprised if you can’t reach your contacts at the DC Examiner today.  We suspect that Stephen Smith and most of his staff have chosen to celebrate this most sacred of holidays at home with close friends and family.  It is after all Matt Drudge‘s birthday.

Yes indeed, the man responsible for funneling millions of readers to Washington news sites each and every day is celebrating his 45th this rainy Thursday morn.  Drudge shares his b-day with Kelly Osbourne, Marla Maples, and Huffington Post’s Michael Calderone.

Thanks for the memories.  Thanks for the links.  Hats…er, fedoras off to you!

VandeHei Voices Disdain for Habitual Tweeting

Mark McKinnon, political communications strategist and columnist for The Daily Beast, chatted with Politico‘s Executive Editor Jim VandeHei over the weekend at the Shorenstein Center’s 25th celebration at Harvard Kennedy School. What emerged might surprise you.

Among the topics: Twitter. Watch out Politico scribes. “I don’t like reporters tweeting when they should be reporting,” said VandeHei. “If they are doing it right, they are reporting.”

His own Twitter habits are anorexic. VandeHei has never written a single tweet, but has 716 followers and follows 144. In the mix of those he follows are USA Today‘s Susan Page, HuffPost‘s Michael Calderone, CBS’s Norah O’Donnell, GMA’s George Stephanopoulos, MSNBC “Morning Joe” Hosts Joe Scarborough and Willie Geist, NJ‘s Marc Ambinder and Susan Davis, CNN’s Candy Crowley, Dana Bash and John King, ABC’s Jake Tapper, NYT Jeff Zeleny, Mark Leibovich and Carl Hulse, WaPo‘s Ezra Klein, NBC’s Andrea Mitchell, and WSJ‘s Jonathan Weisman to name a few. He doesn’t follow every Politico reporter, but he follows usual suspects like Mike Allen, Jonathan Martin, Jonathan Allen, James Hohmann, Ben Smith and Jake Sherman. He’s also still following Kendra Marr, who was recently forced to resign for plagiarism.

In the Harvard interview, VandeHei noted that the problem with young recent grads he interviews today is they’re brilliant, but incapable of shifting through large quantities of information. He described many  as very smart but “incapable of coherence.” He went on to talk about the importance of oversight, saying, “editors are essential.” The Politico co-founder also  introduced uncommon journalism lingo into the conversation as he discussed “deeper dive” pieces. He calls them key to the future of journalism. He said Mike Allen has the most “readers” and “feeders.” He showered Allen with praise, saying he has a “special gift of getting people to talk. He’s nice, trusted.”

For those waiting fitfully for the day when VandeHei utters his first tweet he’s at @JimVandeHei. But don’t hold your breath.

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