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Posts Tagged ‘Nate Silver’

Morning Chatter

Journos react to Hastings’ autopsy

“Hey kids. Drugs are wack. And they won’t make you a better writer.” – TIME Washington Bureau Chief Michael Scherer in response to Michael Hastings‘ autopsy released Tuesday in LAT that revealed that there were small amounts of pot and methamphetamine in his system at the time of his death.

“Drugs are bad.” — RedState and FNC’s Erick Erickson.

Governor saves an insect

“Walking up statehouse steps I observed @LincolnChafee save a praying mantis. Used paper to move it to grass. Then got in car and drove away.” – AP‘s David Klepper.

A question we must all ask ourselves

“I’ve got a bunch of tomato water and don’t have ideas for it. What should I do?” — Slate‘s Farhad Manjoo.

Official number of women who have accused San Diego Mayor Bob Filner of sexual harassment: 17

Cookie time at WaPo

“My favorite time in the office: @WaPoFood has already started “research” for their famous annual Christmas cookie feature.” – WaPo Book World Editor Ron Charles.

Real HuffPost story promo: “Sex with goat gets man banned from every farm in entire country”

Real Headline in The Daily Caller: “Weiner tries to slip back in”

Vast liberal media conspiracy? Editor, please.

“If he’d been Bob Filner (R), the whole party would’ve exiled him weeks ago & the press would still be talking about damaging narratives.” — Townhall Political Editor Guy Benson, who clearly hasn’t been watching the news as Filner’s every grope or “pat on the tush” is covered.

Politico Playbook Publish Time: 9:49 a.m.

Bo and Sunny fallout…

“I’m surprised the Obamas didn’t name their new puppy ‘Cousin Oliver.’” — National Review‘s Jim Geraghty.

Afternoon Reading List 08.13.13.

Paying for an unpaid internship — Unpaid internships have become a dreaded necessity, and Capitol Hill is no different. As HuffPost’s Arin Greenwood reports, one aspiring Hill staffer has launched a campaign on Indiegogo to cover the costs of living in D.C. during an internship she’s been offered with Sen. Maj. Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). The campaign, titled “Latina Leadership Fund — Dreams and Political Aspirations,” describes Jessica Padron‘s already-impressive political experience and notes that she’ll be the first in her family to be a college grad once she graduates form the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. So far, she’s raised $2,875 out of the $6,500 she’s asking for.

Weiner gets schooled Anthony Weiner has dropped to fourth in the Democratic primary race for New York City mayor, and has become somewhat of a punching bag for the media. As TNR’s Marc Tracy reports, that beating of Weiner continued Monday night when the mayoral candidate got “schooled” by Ben Smith at BuzzFeed Brews. Tracy provides a vivid account of the interview, in which Smith got Weiner to state that his wife, Huma Abedin, “has been assigned a role on the nascent presidential campaign” of Hilary Clinton. Smith, editor-in-chief of BuzzFeed, was “masterful,” he wrote. While Tracy described Smith’s “keen dislike for Weiner,” Tracy wasn’t shy about his love for Smith.

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Tips From Nate Silver to Help You Play By the Numbers

Revolutions, a blog about numbers and analytics, was on hand to hear ESPN’s Nate Silver at the recent Joint Statistical Meeting in Montreal. He’s got some 11 tips and principles for journalists when it comes to dealing with numbers, specifically statistics.

Here’s a few.

  • Our favorite, correlation is not causation. You can’t always connect the dots, as much as you might want to. For example, just because incidences of violence go up when it’s hot, doesn’t mean climate change causes violence, CBS News.
  • The average is still the most useful of all stats. “Because they are looking for interesting stories, journalists often focus on the outliers.” While interesting, outliers don’t illuminate much that you can apply to the world.
  • Make predictions. “If journalists would put their money and their reputations where their mouths are they might get closer to achieving scientific objectivity.”

What You Should Think, Nate Silver Edition

We’ve read a bunch of opinion pieces on Nate Silver this week, mostly so you don’t have to—because we know how much some of you hate him. The highlights:

You’re Fired!

NYT‘s Public Editor, Margaret Sullivan, wrote in a recent column that after praising Nate Silver, she was contacted by three “high-profile” political reporters at the paper “criticizing him and his work. They were also tough on me for seeming to endorse what he wrote, since I was suggesting that it get more visibility.” She thinks this is because Silver’s style of data-based journalism threatened the more… traditional way they covered politics. In other words, he made them feel irrelevant and they lashed out at Sullivan. Mother Jones’ Kevin Drum thinks this is a firing offense. “Even for those of us who are pretty cynical about political reporting, this is astonishing. If I were editor of the Times, I’d do whatever it took to find out who those three are, and then fire them instantly,” he says. Let’s see… fire a reporter who reacts badly out of an inflated sense of self-importance and ego. If that’s the standard, journalism could be in more trouble than we thought.

The Guy Who Doesn’t Get It, But Thinks He Does

David Hill‘s columns at The Hill are normally confounding, and this week’s on Silver is no exception. He spends a lot of time explaining how Silver will fail in his switch to ESPN for reason’s he can’t quite articulate, other than that “(l)ots of Web clicks, even millions of clicks, for a few months every four years does not qualify as mass media by most standards.” Really? Let’s be clear—Hill has absolutely no idea what Silver’s traffic at the Times is, or when. He’s speculating, and poorly. Scratch that, he’s just making stuff up to prove a point that seems to elude even him, facts or truth be damned. He says there isn’t enough interest out there for Silver to make it beyond his “15 minutes of fame at The New York Times,” (is Hill’s watch that slow?) and then tells us how he had the idea to exactly what Silver does “probably before Silver was born.” The kicker is Hill doesn’t seem to actually totally understand what Silver does—it’s statistics and probabilities and data modeling and that’s… science. So why would Hill, a Republican, take time to understand it? To top it off, this column follows one a few weeks back in which he calls big-data a “craze”  that threatens polling standards and then excoriates the Obama campaign for perceived ethical lapses in microtargeting voters. Nevermind Karl Rove pioneered microtargeting years earlier for Bush. Facts are not Hill’s strong point. Read more

Carlos Dangerously-Named Journos

Anthony Weiner admitted yesterday to using the online alias Carlos Danger to carry on a strange Internet affair with a 22-year-old woman. If you’re anything like us, that got you wondering how Weiner came up with such a great alias. Already having graced the news media by having the last name Weiner, he’s provided another amazing name to fill headlines and Twitter jokes.

But lets face it, sometimes we all need an alias, whether it’s to ghost-write a book or set up a Swedish bank account to hold mounds of embezzled money. And if you haven’t found your inner-Carlos Danger yet, don’t worry, it’s not hard at all. Yesterday afternoon, Chris Kirk of Slate posted a Carlos Danger Name Generator that figures it out for you. We of course had to figure out the alter-egos of the FBDC staff, as well as a few journos around D.C. Enjoy.

Silvestre Sly: Betsy Rothstein, FBDC

José Jeopardy: Peter Ogburn, FBDC

Pascual Death: Justin McLachlin, FBDC

Lorenzo Distress: Austin Price, FBDC

Now see the rest…

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Afternoon Reading List 07.22.13.

Washington goes nuts over Nate Silver’s switch to ESPN — After the news broke that NYT’s Nate Silver was leaving the NYT for ESPN and ABC News, TPM editor Josh Marshall wrote a short blog post Saturday about it for TPM’s editor’s blog, calling it a “massive blow for the Times.” Other than that, it was a pretty standard post about what he’ll be doing at his new workplace and what will happen to FiveThirtyEight, his blog that has essentially been leased to the Times since 2010. Apparently Marshall had more to say. On Sunday afternoon, he published another post that was mostly an excerpt from Sunday’s Playbook, pulled from Politico’s Mike Allen. Surrounding the lengthy excerpt were some of Marshall’s feelings on matter, including that he, “as a news consumer,” finds Silver’s new focus on weather, economics, and education more fascinating. He also confirms suspicions that Silver was getting bored of politics as an exclusive realm.

Why you should read it: Marshall provides some insight into Silver’s move, but honestly most of the information comes from the Playbook excerpt, which has a lot of information in it and is worth a read itself.

How realistic is “The Newsroom?” — Aaron Sorkin’s widely popular HBO show “The Newsroom”, set two years in the past, follows the fictional ACN News Night team as it covers events that grabbed real headlines, such as Occupy, Troy Davis’ execution and Anwar Al-Awlaki‘s death by drone strike. The Atlantic’s Ashley Fetters compares the depiction of events in the second episode of the second season to real news coverage of the events. Fetters notes the similarity of the quick rise of coverage of the Occupy Wall Street rally in Zuccotti Park and ACN’s coverage of Occupy on the show. Down to the day, Sorkin portrayed the coverage of the rally with accuracy. Fetters continues through more examples, including a scene where two control room operators watch decade-old footage of anchor Will McAvoy’s first shift as anchor on September 11, 2001, which lasted 16 hours. Fetter compares this with Peter Jennings’ roughly 17-hour shift that day.

Why you should read it: Let’s be honest, you probably anxiously awaited season two and watched the second episode as soon as it came it out. And for those of you who don’t regularly watch it (or more accurately, just don’t admit to it), this may convince you to start.

 

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Morning Chatter

Famous last words? “I don’t know what a sharknado is, but I wish it would get out of my timeline.” — George Scoville.

Dylan Byers blasted for daring to deflate Glenn Greenwald

Kade: “Bet @DylanByers feels dumb about saying @ggreenwald didn’t have anymore big stories. How exciting on all fronts!” To which D.C. freelancer Sam Knight replied, “No, Kade. You’re wrong. If @DylanByers felt dumb about being wrong, he would have stopped trafficking wrong a long time ago.” All of this bluster stems from a single line in a Thursday post from Politico‘s Dylan Byers, in which he said he thought the wind was coming out of Guardian‘s Glenn Greenwald‘s sails. More specifically, “Greenwald doesn’t appear to have any more big revelations up his sleeve.”And with that, let the d**k swinging contest begin! You’d have thought Byers said Greenwald had some sort of erectile dysfunction disorder by the way that geeky know-it-all prof and blogger Jay Rosen and Greenwald reacted. Then again, Byers isn’t exactly great at reading crystal balls – anyone recall what he said about NYT‘s Nate Silver? Nonetheless, Byers shot back at Rosen and Greenwald, who made fun of him and challenged his comment, writing, “Both of you willingly misread and are misrepresenting what I wrote.” He added, “Read this one and please try to troll less.” (Read here.) In conclusion, we’re taking Byers’ side here, but only because Rosen and Greenwald sound like a couple of whiny babies.

Newly elected WHCA board member expresses gratitude

“Thrilled and a little nervous about representing my colleagues on the White House Correspondents Association board. Thank you.” – Yahoo! News’ Olivier Knox. Others who won: WSJ‘s Carol Lee as Prez; CBS’ Major Garrett as a board member. Congrats to all. Read more about this here.

Pregnant gossip writer has pickle cravings

“I’ve eaten five pickles in less than 24 hours, thereby officially becoming a cliché. #preggoproblems” — Howiella Kurtz (a.k.a. The Hill‘s Judy Kurtz).

Thursday boldness

“OK, I’m going to say it – Britney’s new song sucks” — Nikki Schwab, who links to the song.

Important Q to Ponder: “What the fuck is going on in downtown DC? Why are 8 blocks cordoned off?” — WSJ video reporter Neil Hickey.

Politico Playbook Publish Time: 9:18 a.m.

Sexy for Washington talk

“Hot Mitch McConnell on Harry Reid action right now.” — Politico‘s Blake Hounshell.

 

Travel Bitches

“May not take @DCCirculator anymore if they can’t let passengers debark during 15 mns & counting of gridlocked traffic. Bus #1131.” — Crisis consultant and former journo Tim Burger.

Don’t miss more Morning Chatter… and WaPo‘s Gene Weingarten attempting humor… Read more

Andrew Sullivan Takes Up For Nate Silver

In an interview with TNR‘s Isaac Chatiner published Tuesday, Politico co-founders John Harris and Jim VandeHei took swipes at Nate Silver, the number-crunching NY Times journalist who correctly predicted all 50 states’ outcome in the 2012 presidential election.

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Byers Sugarcoats Enemy Status With Silver

Politico‘s Dylan Byers is rather kind to himself when describing his cantankerous relationship with NYT‘s Nate Silver. This is how he characterized reaching out to Silver for a post published Thursday. As you can see below, Byers framed it rather timidly, saying that Silver has not been a fan of his blog or of Politico. Not to put too fine a point on it — oh, but why not? — but not only has Silver not been playing kissing games with Byers, but he has, in fact, called him a “terrible journalist.” The bad blood between them, in part, is over this item, in which Byers questioned whether Silver would be a one-term celeb if his election predictions were wrong.

“POLITICO reached out to Silver to ask how much of an effect he believed his data and analysis had on voters in 2012, if any. Silver, who has been a critic of this blog and of POLITICO in the past, did not respond.”

We like that Byers reached out to someone who hates his guts. But we think Byers’ line should’ve gone something like this: “Silver, who loathes every cell in my body and would probably like to rip out every hair follicle in my goatee, did not respond.”

Separated at Birth: TNR’s Franklin Foer

Today we naturally pair up TNR Editor Franklin Foer and NYT‘s Nate Silver.

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