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Posts Tagged ‘Ruth Graham’

In Wake of Tragedy, Journalists Bicker

No judgment here.

But last night Twitter was a curious place to be as we watched clusters of journalists needle one another and, in some cases, go for the throat without real just cause. Sharpened nerves. An inability to piece together what happened. Heightened tensions in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings.

They were primed to fight. For example, since when do retweets really mean endorsements? Really never, except for last night when anything could spark a feud.

So much for the wise and largely unheeded advice from Ruth Graham, contributing writer to The Boston Globe‘s ideas section; freelancer for Slate and The Atlantic: “Guys, if you see a tweet that pisses you off today because it’s rude or dumb or political, maybe consider just ignoring it?”

What, and ignore the chance to take your frayed nerves out on someone else like a rabid dog? We’re vaguely reminded of Glenn Close in the bloody bathtub scene of “Fatal Attraction” and her chilling remark, “I mean, I’m not going to be ignored, Dan.”

Among the two big clusters of brawls was another “Glenn.” This one, Politico‘s Glenn Thrush, who attempted to school CNN’s Chris Cuomo on proper bomb coverage. Cuomo wrote, 1. “#Boston – latest. Two bombs exploded. A 3rd pkg was blown up by auth’s. As many as 3 other possible devices being investigated.” 2. “#Boston authorities still searching. Two crude bombs with ball bearings or shrapnel went off. Other pkgs found may have been non-explosive.” 3. “Being told at this point not ruling out one actor theory.”

Thrush lashed out. “Wait–so how did one guy plant the 8 bombs u told us about earlier? …Not being a wise ass — asking u to think before u press send,” Thrush wrote to Cuomo. The Atlantic‘s Jeffrey Goldberg promptly backed Thrush: “Now on Twitter, Glenn Thrush is teaching Chris Cuomo about journalism. …Just to be clear, I was complimenting Glenn Thrush for teaching Chris Cuomo about the dangers of spreading unconfirmed information.” Cuomo ignored his critics and didn’t respond to any of them.

The other snarl was Politico‘s Dylan Byers versus ClearChannel‘s Colby Hall and BuzzFeed‘s Andrew Kaczynski. Byers, who’s usually pretty mild-mannered on Twitter, and Kaczynski, who occasionally enjoys subtle antagonizing, eventually seemed to warm back up to each other, but not without a few blistering moments when BuzzFeed Editor-in-Chief and Twitter father figure Ben Smith, who at different points hired them both, dove in to effectively say, ‘You’re both right.’ Come on Ben, in a good Twitter fight, opposing sides are never both right! But this morning he declared to some involved parties: “No haters.” But life on Twitter is not always so civilized.

Some more spiritual healing ignored by all: “A crisis depletes your emotions,” wrote megachurch pastor Rick Warren, whose popularly isn’t exactly soaring in the gay community. “You must intentionally replenish them. Make a list of what restores you and do those things.”

Restore? How about a brawl on what the real meaning of “retweet” is. Is it a ringing endorsement or sharing facts or innocently presenting a contrasting viewpoint? If you’re Politico‘s Byers, it’s the latter as he shared a diary piece from the conservative RedState; if you’re ClearChannel‘s Hall it’s the former and it appeared to seriously piss him off. And then Byers used profanity and the whole thing got U.G.L.Y.

Colby Hall: “Why promote some random wacko consipiracy [sic] theory?”

Dylan Byers: “Because it’s indicative of what some on far-right are thinking. will matter later.”

Colby Hall: “Or you are just promoting the acceptance of a half-baked theory that is better left ignored.”

Dylan Byers: “Or you are full of shit.”

Colby Hall: “Whoa!”

Dylan Byers: “I’m not promoting anything. I’m showing parameters of conversation.”

Colby Hall: “Now who’s full of shit?”

Dylan Byers: “You think I’m endorsing fringe speculation because I take note of it? I doubt that.”

Colby Hall: But you didn’t just “take note of it”…you brought attention to it by linking to it. so yeah, you promoted it.

Dylan Byers: “Providing link to an article you don’t necessarily agree with is not promoting it. It’s referencing it.”

Colby Hall: “But editorial judgment isn’t just what you link — it’s what you chose not to link to.”

This is about when Andrew Kaczynski jumped into the fray: Read more

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Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day: Boston Marathon Bombing Aftermath

“DC ON ALERT: Outside White House, Pennsylvania Ave again closed to pedestrians.” — NBC News’ Peter Alexander with accompanying photograph. 

CAUTIOUS CORRESPONDENTS: “I don’t want to overly speculate because as you know early reports are often wrong, we could be way off base but clearly they are saying this was an explosive device, an improvised explosive advice, in other words, a bomb.” — CNN’s Wolf Blitzer. “We’ve been careful all afternoon, did not jump to conclusions.” — FNC’s Bret Baier.

Did someone say conclusions? “I’m getting suspicious with everyone telling me not to ‘jump to conclusions.’ I hadn’t, but now I’m beginning to …” — Conservative Commentator Ann Coulter.

Journo finds new ritual in wake of tragedy

“New weird post-tragedy ritual: I click ‘like’ on the ‘we’re ok’ Facebook status of friends who might not have been…” — Yahoo! News’ Olivier Knox.

It’s a go. “Supposed to board a flight from New Orleans to Boston in 10 minutes. TSA and gate agent both still telling me it’s a go.” — Digital First Media Thunderdome’s Adrienne LaFrance, who also writes for WaPo and Nieman Lab.

Award-winning “too soon” quote: “I’m going to speculate the bomb was planted by cable TV talking heads.” — David Burge, Iowahawkblog.

Why he looked at gruesome Boston pictures: “I looked at the photos because apparently I just have to know how awful the world can be sometimes.” — Dave Stroup, Digital Director, Aneesh Chopra for Virginia Lt. Gov.

Coping, communicating: “Hispanic kid who work at Don Juan’s takeout counter translating reports of Boston Marathon explosion to non English speakers at table.” — InTheseTimes labor journo Mike Elk.

Mistakes bound to happen…“Post also reported 10 more dead than Boston PD are confirming.” — Seth Mnookin.

Don’t blame Boston scribes: “Boston is a hell of a news town. Great reporters doing what they do. All the wild speculation and rumors, not coming from hometowners.” — AP‘s Matt Apuzzo, who works on the Washington D.C.-based investigative team.

On Capitol Hill: “Mood extremely tense on Capitol Hill. Police evacuating grounds as precaution after Boston marathon bombing.” — Stephen Barton, Policy and Outreach Assistant at Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

Reporter on the ground: “Fine. Reporting. I was 10 feet from explosion. Shaken up. But not a scratch. Worst thing I ever saw.” — Boston Globe reporter David Abel.

The Media Critics

“Seriously, @FoxNews? Best you can do is birther sheriff Joe Arapaio to discuss security? Really? #boston” — Politico‘s Steve Friess.

“When network news is good, its great. Brian Williams on NC right now is great stuff. Matt Lauer doing a standup from outside Mass General.” — Politico‘s Jake Sherman.

Just the Facts

“#Boston police officer tells me bombs were packed with small metal objects meant to maim–nails, zippers, blades.” — ABC’s Terry Moran.

“Was interesting to watch nearly everyone in my Twitter feed automatically assume the New York Post was lying today.” — BuzzFeed‘s Rosie Gray.

Journalists emote on Boston tragedy… Read more

Nasty Cat Fight Breaks Out Between Olbermann and Daily Caller

It’s the new in thing – a weekly Friday Twitter fight between MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann and The Daily Caller. The Daily Caller published a story today by Ruth Graham – the story that declared that Olbermann only brings on guests who agree with him.

Then the fight moved onto Twitter.

flying-cat-fight.jpg

12:30 p.m. The Daily Caller: Keith Olbermann knows what @KeithOlbermann is talking about http://ow.ly/29jOx

12:30 p.m. Olbermann RT @DailyCaller Keith Olbermann knows what @KeithOlbermann is talking about /Daily Caller has never known what Daily Caller is talking about

1:45 p.m. Olbermann RT @jtLOL amusing how a guy who claims not to read @DailyCaller knows so much about (it) /I worked with its founder. Bow tie contained brain

2 p.m. Olbermann: @DailyCaller Nice ratings decline. Looking forward to you on cable access /Never. Can’t deny Tuck his last TV chance

2:10 p.m. The Daily Caller: well @KeithOlbermann, @tuckercarlson is hosting @hannity tonight. Let’s see how those numbers work out.

Update:

The Daily Caller’s Sean “Jim Treacher” Medlock is clearly also getting in on the fun. He’s mentioned above…

Treacher: jtLOL @KeithOlbermann Kudos to whoever does your “hair” and makeup. Looks like a dead hamster on a basketball.

Keith Olbermann: RT @jtLOL as we’re going sartorial does that mean it’s ok to make fun of whatever that thing is on your head? /They’re called “glasses”

Treacher: jtLOL @KeithOlbermann You comb your glasses? Well, I guess they pay somebody to do that for you. For now.