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Jill Abramson’s Departure Is Bad News for The New York Times

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Yesterday’s announcement that The New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson was leaving the Grey Lady to be replaced by managing editor Dean Baquet came as a big surprise to all who don’t work in the NYT newsroom. The politics behind the move have unraveled at a record pace since then.

Unfortunately, the more we learn about it, the more we can guarantee that the story won’t end well for the paper of record. The biggest reveal to date came courtesy of Ken Auletta at The New Yorker: seems that Abramson didn’t just make less money than the men who preceded her–she made less than her own deputy.

The issue: how did the Times so completely lose control of this story?

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UPDATED: ‘The Oatmeal’ Cartoonist Leverages Love of Tesla Motors to Support Nikola Tesla Museum

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I’m a longtime fan of The Oatmeal, and particularly appreciate how cartoonist Matt Inman exuberantly describes and animates his unbridled passion for the things he loves — his dog, grammar, the fiendishly-terrifying Mantis Shrimp, etc.

As it turns out, Inman also happens to love Tesla — both the legendary inventor and the car company — and is attempting to leverage his love and endorsement of the latter to support a museum honoring the former.

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STUDY: How Do Journalists Use Social Media Today?

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We’re all very aware that journalism on the whole is having something of a “moment”. Thankfully, The Indiana School of Journalism has attempted to answer some of the central questions in media and PR with a report on the state of the practice that is essential reading for every communications professional worth his or her salt.

As The Washington Post reported this week, two professors at the school surveyed more than 1,000 pro newsmen and women to create “The American Journalist in the Digital Age“, the latest edition of a survey they’ve run approximately once a decade since 1971.

Takeaways and cool graphs* after the jump.

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‘Fake Steve Jobs’ Takes a Shot at Departing Apple PR Head

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Dan Lyons–one of the most colorful journalists to become a marketer i.e. “hack turned flack“–took one final pop at Katie Cotton, the retiring VP of worldwide corporate communications at Apple, by posting a photo of a female sniper on his Facebook page. He joined HubSpot last year from ReadWrite.

Lyons, the former “Fake Steve Jobs” blogger and longtime tech journalist frequently “dispatched” Cotton to control and punish journalists who didn’t fall in line with his personae’s wishes. Lyons spent considerable time balancing satire with his other work, and managed to blog anonymously for about a year till he was outed by Brad Stone.

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‘Fox and Friends’ Hosts and Guest Scientist Exchange Insults After Segment Didn’t Go as Planned

Fox smears science editor as a ‘coward’ after he exposes network’s climate change ban

An appearance by a Scientific American editor Michael Moyer, on Wednesday’s “Fox & Friends” morning show has left the hosts of the show and Mr. Moyer hurling insults at one another via every channel imaginable — TV, blog post, Twitter, etc.

The plan had been for Moyer to appear on the show to discuss scientific trends that might impact the future. The first thing that came to Moyer’s mind, he told Business Insider, was climate change, but he says that the producers asked him to steer clear of that controversial subject, requesting he replace that talking point “with something else.”

Then things slowly fell apart.

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Avril Lavigne Responds to ‘Hello Kitty’ Critics and Cries of ‘Racism’

Avril Lavigne (who apparently still exists) is taking some serious flack for her new video “Hello Kitty.”

Since the video first appeared on YouTube this past Tuesday (it has since been taken down and re-posted), shaming, angry tweets have abounded, and even the experts haven’t been sure what to make of it — the general consensus seems to be that it might be racist (pandering at best), and it’s definitely terrible.

Billboard magazine’s Jason Lipshutz called the video “an embarrassment in any language,” and Entertainment Weekly‘s Darren Frenich said, “There are serious questions about whether it’s offensive (expressionless Asian dancers, Tokyo-as-prop) or offensively obvious (this one’s for you, large Japanese fanbase!).” Read more

Inside PR at The Guardian in the Edward Snowden Era

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Very few publications have won as much attention or acclaim over the past year as The Guardian.

The British/American paper shared its recent Pulitzer Prize for public service with The Washington Post, but three people are truly responsible: Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras and, of course, Edward Snowden.

Since those fateful days in June when the story first broke, nearly every government in the world has faced a moment of reckoning; the revelations gradually revealed by Greenwald and Snowden have shaken the public’s trust in both its elected representatives and the companies producing the technologies it uses every day.

But there’s another side to the story, and it comes from the perspective of the communications team that helped manage what is unquestionably the biggest scoop of the century to date.

We recently spoke to Gennady Kolker, who oversees media relations at The Guardian US, for an insider’s view of the events of the past ten months.

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5 Things: The Best PRNewser Listicle Posts of Q1

five-thingsICYMI: We have been having some fun with listicles. You know? The posts that begin with “5 Things…

They get your attention, and for good reason because we try to inundate those posts with information you can use on a daily basis. Thanks to our awesome readers of PR Newser, our “5 Things” lists will continue for at least another quarter. While you have been a vital part of our extended bloggerific family for years, we thought it may be of use to offer the five best “5 things” posts of the first quarter. Based on comments, traffic, interest, and overall journalistic (slash) PR value, here they are for your amusement and edumication.

So, away we go…

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How Should HBO Respond to ‘Game of Thrones’ Controversy?

Game_of_Thrones_title_screen.png.CROP.promo-mediumlargeSince Sunday night’s episode of “Game of Thrones” aired, the internet has been abuzz with controversy over a decidedly disturbing scene that played out very differently in the show than it did in the books; what was written as an instance of consensual (yet creepy) sex played out on screen as an incredibly difficult-to-watch depiction of rape.

While many fans were angry that a character endowed with his own (strange) brand of honor had been re-written as capable of committing such a heinous, unforgivable act against a person he loves — and some wondered why the showrunners felt the need to make an already-disturbing scene so much more violent — all of this this would normally be a question of artistic license and therefore not discussed on a PR blog.

However, comments made by the show’s director Alex Graves have — if unintentionally — shifted the discussion from a touchy one about creative decision-making to a deeply serious one about our culture’s struggle with the definition and recognition of what rape actually is.

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It’s Official: Bloggers Are ‘Journalists’ Too

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Disclaimer: this image is approximately 80% accurate

Today seems to be both Good Friday and “News About the State of Journalism Day”, so here’s another revelation that shouldn’t surprise you: bloggers are now journalists too–at least in the eyes of the law.

Since the story in question occurred in the state of Florida, also known as the source for 95% of Gawker’s traffic, the details are a little weird.

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