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Posts Tagged ‘David Carr’

NY Times Staffers on What Makes a Good Editor

NYtimes buildingWhat makes a good editor? It’s a simple question that can be answered in a variety of ways. It’s completely subjective, of course, but it’s always interesting to hear what people think. The New York Times, as part of its Times Premier package, asked some of its staffers for their thoughts, and below are some highlights.

David Carr:

A good editor is the enemy of clichés and tropes, but not the overburdened writer who occasionally resorts to them.

Frank Bruni:

A great editor makes you feel safe and supported enough to take chances, but pipes up when you’re taking a truly stupid one.

Gretchen Morgenson:

She or he stands behind the reporter throughout any firestorm that ensues. A spine of steel is imperative.

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NYT Reporters Recommend a Few Good Books About Journalism

TheImperfectionistsCoverIn this weekend’s Sunday Book Review, there is a fun, brief item from John Williams. Echoing the general theme of David Carr‘s latest column, he asked Carr as well as Ravi Somaiya, Jonathan Mahler and Peter Lattman to highlight their favorite books about journalism.

The most intriguing comment comes from Lattman. Like Mahler, he chose a work of fiction rather than non-fiction, but not for the reasons you might assume:

Lattman selected The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman, about a “dying English-language newspaper in Rome. This debut novel from 2010 does a better job of capturing a newsroom and its characters than any non-fiction book I’ve read.”

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David Carr Gives His Take on Jill Abramson Drama

DavidCarrHeadshotAlmost everyone has weighed in on the drama behind the New York Times’ unceremonious firing of its executive editor, Jill Abramson. The latest? David Carr, the Times’ media columnist.

In his latest piece, Carr wrote that Abramson’s firing was handled horribly (“The lack of decorum was stunning”), but that Arthur Sulzberger Jr. — the Times’ publisher — had valid reasons for letting her go. “I like Jill and the version of the Times she made,” wrote Carr. “But my reporting, including interviews with senior people in the newsroom, some of them women, backs up his conclusion.” Carr also gets some female Times staffers to say that they’re worried about their path at the paper after Abramson was cut so brutally.

Of course, all the sources in Carr’s piece are anonymous, so that doesn’t help much. Also, Carr states that Abramson was going to “fight her way out” and “inflict some damage on its [the Times] publisher,” but then doesn’t provide a single example of that happening.

No doubt there will be many more takes on this mess, but here’s ours: Everyone loses. Abramson loses because she produced a fantastic verison of the Times and was unceremoniously fired. Sulzberger loses because he acted like a child by publicly bashing Abramson. And the Times loses because this is a drama better fitted for a high school paper, not the paper of record.

Guardian U.S. EIC at Center of Jill Abramson Dismissal

Talk about being an innocent and yet momentous bystander.

JanineGibsonTwitterProfilePicPer an article by David Carr and Ravi Somaiya, the final straw with regards to alleged tensions in the New York Times newsroom triangulated new executive editor Dean Baquet, predecessor Jill Abramson and Guardian U.S. editor-in-chief Janine Gibson (pictured). From their piece:

In recent weeks, these people said, Mr. Baquet had become angered over a decision by Ms. Abramson to make a job offer to a senior editor from The Guardian, Janine Gibson, and install her alongside him in a co-managing editor position without consulting him. It escalated the conflict between them and rose to the attention of Mr. Sulzberger.

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Hollywood Reporter Lists 35 ‘Most Powerful People in New York Media’

It’s list time! The Hollywood Reporter’s annual “most powerful people in New York media” list is out, and it features some staples (Roger Ailes) and some newcomers (Nick Denton). The list, now in its fourth year, honors “The men and women who shape the media message and interpret the sweep of the culture,” according to THR.

People love lists like this. It doesn’t really mean anything, yet everyone will be sure to humblebrag about being included. Media people love patting themselves on the back, and THR is giving them an open invitation to do so.

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Let’s Make Fun of Media Elite’s First Tweets

Twitter has launched a great site — first-tweet.com — that will embarrass any user. Naturally we thought this would be a great opportunity to make fun of some media elite.

First-tweet is self-explanatory — it allows you to see any public users’ first tweet. Most of them are boring, but some — like the ones below — are worth pointing out. Oh, and in case you’re wondering — your FishbowlNY editors’ first tweets were fantastic.

First Tweets from Media Mavens

Rupert Murdoch was still grappling with basic English when he sent his first tweet.

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 5.53.56 PM

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EW Writer Shares Three-Act Philip Seymour Hoffman Memory

ShutterstockPhilipSeymourHoffman2009AcademyAwardsDavid Carr‘s circa 2008 thoughts about Philip Seymour Hoffman generated, deservedly, a lot of attention. Today comes another equally wonderful journalist-POV remembrance from Entertainment Weekly senior film writer Anthony Breznican.

The stakes here – beginning circa 2007 – are equally high, as reflected by the headline “The Night Philip Seymour Hoffman Changed My Life…“. We’re not going to spoil the details; you’ll have to read Breznican’s item to get the full brunt of this vivid trajectory.

To set the scene, the writer recalls that he and his wife Jill sat across from Hoffman for a restaurant dinner at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival promoting The Savages:

While the actor wasn’t into talking about himself or movies, he loved talking about novels and stories: We discussed John Updike, Philip Roth and Richard Ford’s The Sportswriter, and soon we were getting comfortable with each other. The conversation shifted to family. Hoffman and his longtime partner, Mimi O’Donnell, had a toddler son at the time — they would go on to have two more children — and my wife and I were then thinking about having children ourselves…

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David Carr Remembers the Time Philip Seymour Hoffman Wrestled Rainn Wilson

DavidCarrMediumLogoIt happened at the 2008 Independent Spirit Awards, MC-ed under the Santa Monica big top by Rainn Wilson. As New York Times media critic David Carr recalls via a medium.com blog post, the late Philip Seymour Hoffman displayed a lack of vanity that is unusual among Hollywood types.

Reading the following passage, we thought also of Jack Nicholson on-screen in Terms of Endearment, letting his belly hang out as astronaut Garrett Breedlove. From Carr’s piece:

A gauntlet was thrown and the two men collided mid-room, rolling under tables, grappling for their lives in a ferocious, spontaneous death match. Hoffman had a belly, but the man was not soft — he gave as good as he got, huffing and puffing the whole time.

Somewhere in there, his pants slipped, and he was selling a fair amount of crack. It was not his best feature, but he did not seem to care, instead concentrating on the matter at hand, which was fighting Wilson to a joyous and crowd-pleasing standstill.

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Janice Min Takes Over Billboard

In honor of vinyl, the medium that along with radio cemented Billboard‘s place in the media firmament, we’ve got an A-side and B-side for this story.

BillboardLogoThe A-side is a gargantuan press release (and mirrored article version) blasted out last night announcing that Janice Min has been promoted to co-president/chief creative officer of the Entertainment Group of Guggenheim Media. In partnership with John Amato, formerly overseeing Backstage, her duties will now also encompass the re-invigoration of Billboard:

“The combination of Billboard and The Hollywood Reporter under one editorial voice creates a true entertainment super-brand,” said Min. “I’m excited to be at the center of two organizations so influential in driving the conversation in popular culture. The breaking news, personalities and glamour — all wrapped in a sophisticated media environment – that the two brands deliver make for a thrilling combination.”

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David Carr to Join Boston University

DavidCarrHeadshotDavid Carr, media columnist for The New York Times, is joining the Boston University faculty. Carr will spend two days per week at BU teaching a class per semester in its College of Communication. He’ll also take part in public events.

While at BU, Carr hopes to encourage students to think outside the box. “I think a lot of journalism education that is going on is broadly not preparing kids for the world that they are stepping into,” Carr told the The Boston Globe. “It’s a great time to be involved in journalism, but people have to be warmed up in the right way.”

Carr will fill an endowed chair “dedicated to exploring creative business models to support journalism in the digital era,” reported the Globe.

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