Posts Tagged ‘This American Life’
Morning Media Newsfeed: Angelou Dies at 86 | Williams Interviews Snowden | Amazon Talks Hatchette Dispute
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Medal of Freedom Recipient Maya Angelou Dies at 86 (FishbowlDC)
Poet and author Maya Angelou died Wednesday at the age of 86, according to her literary agent Helen Brann. Angelou received the country’s highest civilian honor — the Medal of Freedom — in 2011 from President Obama, and is most widely known for her award-winning memoir I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings. NYT The cause of death was not immediately known, but Brann said Angelou had been frail for some time and had heart problems. GalleyCat In addition to writing, Angelou proved to be an accomplished Renaissance woman who worked as an activist, entertainer, streetcar conductor, magazine editor, college professor and lecturer. CNN Angelou’s legacy is twofold. She leaves behind a body of important artistic work that influenced several generations. But the 86-year-old was praised by those who knew her as a good person, a woman who pushed for justice and education and equality. In her full life, she wrote staggeringly beautiful poetry. She also wrote a cookbook and was nominated for a Tony. Reuters Literary and entertainment figures, politicians and fans mourned her passing on Wednesday. Obama said his sister, Maya, was named for the author, whom he called “a brilliant writer, a fierce friend and a truly phenomenal woman.” Media mogul Oprah Winfrey, who frequently threw lavish birthday parties for Angelou and considered her a mentor, said she would remember her friend most for how she lived her life. “She moved through the world with unshakeable calm, confidence and a fierce grace,” Winfrey said.
The Las Vegas Sun is in very good company. The newspaper, as part of Columbia University’s latest Dart Awards, which recognize exemplary reporting on the effects of violence, crime, disaster and other traumatic events, is one of two 2014 winners, alongside Ira Glass‘ This American Life. The awards will be presented May 8.
The editorial series that won the Sun its prize is heartbreaking. Titled “Grace Through Grief,” it details the aftermath of a home invasion suffered by the Martinez family, during which mom and daughter were killed, and dad was gravely injured:
Judges called “Grace Through Grief” a “deeply reported and inspiring portrayal of a family in the aftermath of horror.” They called Jackie Valley’s prose “exceptional” and Leila Navidi’s photographs “powerful” and “intimate without being disruptive.” They praised the series’ “creative subversiveness,” going far beyond conventional crime reporting in “bringing the reader on a journey of faith, fatherhood, recovery and resilience.” Judges also recognized the “careful restraint” used in bringing forward the perspectives of Arturo Martinez’s young sons.
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Twitter Goes Dark in Turkey Hours After Country’s PM Threatened to ‘Wipe Out’ Service (TechCrunch)
After Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan promised that he would “wipe out” Twitter after it apparently ignored court orders asking the site to remove certain corruption allegations, the service has gone dark in the country. WSJ The move, confirmed by the telecommunications regulator and the state news agency, sent shock waves across Turkey, which is one of the top 10 users of Twitter worldwide with more than 10 million users. Turkish citizens have increasingly turned to the medium to voice opposition to the government and organize demonstrations as mainstream media have avoided criticism of Erdoğan. Variety At a rally in Bursa, Erdoğan pledged to do away with Twitter completely. “We will eradicate Twitter,” he said. “I don’t care what the international community says. Everyone will witness the power of the Turkish Republic.” Tensions between Erdoğan and Twitter had been building for some time. On Feb. 25, the prime minister claimed a “robot lobby” was targeting government through Twitter. He also threatened on March 6 to shut down both Twitter and Facebook in Turkey “if necessary.” Bloomberg Businessweek Erdoğan said the microblogging service ignored court orders to remove content related to a government corruption scandal. The tweets targeted by the premier are from an anonymous user going by the name of Haramzadeler, a Turkish phrase that means Sons of Thieves. The person or persons have been leaking documents and audio files described as the results of a 15-month prosecutor-led investigation into corruption in Erdoğan’s government. Time Those who tried to access Twitter Thursday were taken to a statement from Turkey’s telecommunications regulator that cites court orders allowing the government to ban Twitter. In 2013 during the Occupy Gezi protests, Erdoğan called all of social media “the worst menace to society.” The Washington Post / Morning Mix After Turkey’s Twitter was apparently disabled, the hashtag #TwitterisblockedinTurkey went supernova, though Twitter is still accessible via the site’s SMS service, which allows Turks to text in a tweet.
What started as a casual conversation about the humble beginnings of Chicago Public Radio‘s “This American Life” turned into an impromptu press conference last night as host Ira Glass announced the end of the popular radio program’s Emmy nominated television spinoff on Showtime.
“I don’t know if I can say this yet, but we’ve asked to be taken off of television,” Glass revealed.
Glass’ unexpected announcement came in the midst of a Behind the Scenes event hosted at Manhattan’s 92nd Street Y. The night’s panel, moderated by NY1‘s Budd Mishkin, included the show’s senior producers Julie Snyder, Nancy Updike, Jane Feltes and Sean Cole, as well as film rights producer Alissa Shipp and production manager Seth Lind.
Then, of course, there was Glass — the host and executive producer of the public radio golden child and Showtime program of the same name — who has become ubiquitous on television, billboards and panels alike. His Buddy Holly glasses and graying spiked hair are familiar by now, and his notoriety explains why his introductory applause was by far the most sustained.
Steering the conversation casually, Mishkin lauded the program, giving the night a celebratory feel as the show’s creators discussed its methods and told insider stories to the delight of the crowd. The event began with anecdotes from seemingly slapdash beginnings, as Updike recalled struggling to fill an hour broadcast, even letting Glass wing it live to fill time in the days before the show’s syndication.
The producers reflected on the various media properties that have resulted since the humble inception of “This American Life,” including the forthcoming Steven Soderbergh film The Informant! starring Matt Damon, which is based on an episode.
According to Glass, the show’s relationship with movies was all about supply and demand: “We had no money, but a large supply of ideas, while Hollywood had a large amount of money and no ideas.”
This American Life is looking to unearth one of LA’s strangest newscasts. Sam Shaw wants to find the KNXT broadcast of lawyer Michael Worthington breaking into a vault at Oakwood Cemetery in search of the cryonically frozen bodies inside. And no, it wasn’t sweeps.
Robert Nelson was a pioneer in the deep-freeze technique, and had convinced the cemetery owner to let him store the people-popsicles at the Chatsworth location. Nelson owned Worthington money, and when the attorney heard rumors about mis-management of the cryogenic vaults, he saw his chance. When the team entered, one observer said:
The stench near the crypt is disarming, strips away all defenses, spins the stomach into a thousand dizzying somersaults.
Too bad TAL is radio.
KNXT morphed into KCBS, but the archives belong to Corbis Motion where the tapes languish, uncatalogued in a vault.