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Posts Tagged ‘Felix Salmon’

Felix Salmon: I Said ‘Masturbatory’, Not ‘Masturbation’

Same difference? On a freaky, spring Friday, it’s as good a question as any. It’s also the spark for one of today’s absolute must-reads.

JournalismFestLogoFrom the eighth annual International Journalism Festival in Perugia, Italy (April 30- May 4), the hosts tweeted that Fusion TV’s Felix Salmon had said, quote: “Breaking news is the most masturbating thing journalists do.” Salmon has followed with a minor correction (he said “masturbatory”, not “masturbating”) and a whole bunch of elaboration:

The full quote was captured by the FT’s John Burn-Murdoch: “Breaking news is the most masturbatory thing journalists do. The reader couldn’t give a flying f*ck who broke it.”

A bit of context, here… In the Q&A, I was asked about whether there was a problem with the fact that explanatory journalism doesn’t break news. In particular, I was asked about this quote, from James Ball, at The Guardian, writing about Vox and FiveThirtyEight:

‘Neither site truly aims to break news on the areas they cover, and therein lies a problem: Are readers meant to visit their favorite “regular” news sites, then hop by and see if the newcomers have anything to add (or debunk)? Neither FiveThirtyEight nor Vox has offered quite enough (yet) on any of their specialties to become the first stop.’

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Felix Salmon Leaves Reuters, Quartz Adds Two, Yahoo Names Exec Editor

A couple moves this morning involving Reuters and Quartz, the business site from The Atlantic. Details are below.

    • Felix Salmon is leaving Reuters. The New York Times reports that Salmon hasn’t disclosed where he’s headed next. Salmon had been with Reuters since 2009. Prior to that he worked for Portfolio.
    • Quartz has hired Nikhil Sonnad and Jenni Avins. Sonnad will be a reporter on the site’s Things team and Avins a lifestlye reporter. Sonnad comes to Quartz from Sydney’s The Global Mail. Avins was a contributing editor to New York’s The Cut.
    • Susan Kittenplan is joining Yahoo as executive editor of media initiatives. Kittenplan is the founder of Kittenplan Catalyst LLC and formerly an executive editor of Allure. She has also previously served as a senior editor at GQ, deputy editor at Glamour, and associate editor and researcher at Vanity Fair.

Should You Write For Free? Journos Weigh In on the Thayer/Atlantic Kerfuffle

When freelance journalist Nate Thayer posted an email exchange he’d had with an editor at The Atlantic, who hoped to publish his work without compensation, he had no idea it would garner so much attention. The blog post has been viewed over 100,000 times, tweeted like mad, and has prompted a vigorous debate among journalism professionals.

Over at Reuters, Felix Salmon breaks down point-by-point where The Atlantic screwed up, while explaining why the magazine’s online freelance budget is so small as to be, at times, non-existent. It’s not that digital journalism doesn’t pay, he explains, it just rarely pays freelancers. If you want to make a living wage, you need a staff position.

Not everyone is against working for nothing. Matthew Yglesias of Slate calls it “an enormous boon to society” when people write online for free. Staffer-turned-freelancer Ann Friedman admits in her column at CJR that she occasionally writes for free, albeit only with good reasons. Those include establishing experience, raising her profile, or an opportunity to participate in something wonderful.

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2012 Gerald Loeb Award Winners Announced

Below are the 2012 Gerald Loeb Award winners, via Talking Biz News. The Loeb’s are given for excellence in business journalism. Congrats to all.

Large Newspapers

Medium & Small Newspapers

Magazines

Commentary

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Laughing at Goldman Sachs

In case you missed it, Greg Smith wrote an op-ed about leaving Goldman Sachs in The New York Times yesterday that has been getting reaction since the moment it was published. In the piece, Smith laments that the company is unrecognizable to him now, and that — shockingly — making money is the priority, not people. He also reveals that Goldman Sachs refers to clients as “Muppets.”

Below, some of the best reactions to the article.

  • @KenTremendous “Hang on hang on hang on. You’re telling me that Goldman Sachs is a rapacious, immoral, money-obsessed company? Since when?!”
  • Why I Am Leaving The Empire, By Darth Vader
  • “What’s missing in his op-ed is any sense of mea culpa, any sense that he was at all part of the problem.” Felix Salmon, at Reuters.
  • @BorowitzReport “Today’s NYTimes covers the fallout from the Times’ Goldman Op-Ed. Tomorrow: coverage of the fallout from that coverage.”

Rumor: CNN to Buy Mashable for $200 Million

The New York Times and Reuters are reporting that CNN is going to acquire Mashable. Felix Salmon of Reuters said that the deal could be announced tomorrow and the price tag could be a hefty $200 million.

Salmon did add that he “didn’t know” if the rumor about the acquisition was true, and reps for CNN and Mashable declined to comment on the talks to the Times. The paper didn’t take that for an answer though, and did some sleuthing:

There was a social media hint about the potential acquisition early Monday morning when Adam Ostrow, the executive editor of Mashable, ‘liked’ on Facebook Mr. Salmon’s story for Reuters.

Stay tuned (glued?) for more details.

UPDATE:
Brian Stelter of the Times just tweeted that Mashable has denied the timing: “In email to staff, Pete Cashmore says it ‘isn’t true’ that @Mashable ‘will be acquired this week.’ (Doesn’t deny NYT report of talks w/CNN.)”

The Best Romenesko Reactions

You probably already know this by now, but last night Jim Romenesko — a man widely respected in the media world — resigned early after a ridiculous piece by Poynter’s Julie Moos went up during the day. In the article, Moos attacked Romenesko for the very thing everyone thinks he does the best: Crediting sources and linking.

Moos’ take was so off base and wrong that everyone immediately lashed out at it and her. Romenesko was taken aback by it too, so he quit earlier than he planned to, telling the New York Times, “This really did throw me for a loop.”

A loop is putting it lightly and politely. Romenesko was Poynter, and for them to do that to him was almost surreal. We hope Moos enjoyed writing that, because now that Romenesko is gone, the site’s traffic will disappear too. But enough from us, let’s take a look at some of the best reactions from around the blogosphere.

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The Best Reactions to The Latest News Corp. Scandal

In case you missed the big news yesterday, The Guardian broke a News Corp. scandal. According to the paper, the European edition of The Wall Street Journal had been funneling money through companies to secretly buy huge quantities of the paper at a discount, thus misleading readers and advertisers about the Journal’s circulation numbers.

Not good, right? Especially when the Journal’s parent, News Corp., is already dealing with the phone hacking incident. Even if this ends up being not as big of a deal as it seems, it’s still enough to make people — once again — question the company, and that’s never a good thing.

Here are a few other reactions to the scandal from the media world.

Jack Shafer thinks that the scandal could go away quickly, considering that the alleged advertiser friendly copy in the Journal was all in special sections:

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Felix Salmon is Completely Fine With Tweeting False Information

Earlier a rumor began floating around Twitter that CNN had suspended Piers Morgan. Immediately journalists tweeted and retweeted the news, because media people always love being the first (or close to first) to report something. Now that the rumor has been proved false, those same journalists are backtracking – none more ridiculously than Reuters’ financial blogger Felix Salmon.

While some people who tweeted the rumor – such as Anthony De Rosa – went the right route and simply apologized for the error, Salmon took to his blog and basically said it’s okay for journalists to tweet false information:

…One of the things I like about Twitter is that it behaves in many ways a lot more like a newsroom than a newspaper. Rumors happen there, and then they get shot down — no harm no foul.

He adds that because the false information doesn’t come from a professional account, it’s all good. But it’s not. People obviously make mistakes, but to tweet something wrong and then say, “Oh, well it’s fine” when people follow you because you’re supposed to be a credible news source, is wrong.

If Salmon doesn’t want that responsibility placed on his account, he should remove “Felix Salmon is the finance blogger at Reuters” from his Twitter bio. Until then people are going to give more weight to what he tweets, whether he likes it or not.

Jill Abramson is Tweeting

When we heard that Jill Abramson was going to be taking over at The New York Times, our speculation was that there will be a noticeable digital focus at the paper. We then needled Abramson a bit because for all her digital prowess, she still hadn’t signed up for Twitter.

But yesterday she signed up, and we’re glad she did. So far she’s only tweeted three times (once to rebuke Felix Salmon) but that’ll surely change soon. She’s also only following 71 accounts, and the fact that one of those isn’t us doesn’t make us sad at all.

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