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Posts Tagged ‘Jacob Weisberg’

More Roger Ailes Bio Reviews: ‘Disingenuous,’ Unmemorable

Ailes bookThe New York Times made room for a second book review of the Gabriel Sherman unauthorized biography of Fox News founder Roger Ailes. This one, by Janet Maslin and published in this morning’s paper, is not as glowing as the one from Jacob Weisberg published in the Sunday Book Review.

Tucked away at the end of Gabriel Sherman’s disingenuous Roger Ailes biography, there is a note on sources that should have opened the book. Sherman has done a lot of interviewing, but there are so many citations of “author interview with a person familiar with the matter” that The Loudest Voice in The Room may set a record for blind items and the untrustworthiness they engender. It would have helped to know right from the get-go why Sherman found this kind of journalism necessary.

The Baltimore Sun‘s David Zurawik has his take on the book:

I know that understanding the life and mind of Ailes would make us smarter about our media and ourselves — and we desperately need such understanding. Unfortunately, this book fails to provide that. For all its promotional push, I don’t think The Loudest Voice in the Room will be long remembered — or even talked about past the short buzz life of most media these days.

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NYT Book Review of Ailes Bio: ‘Actually Fair and Balanced, Carefully Documented’

roger_ailes_a_lWith “The Loudest Voice in the Room,” Gabriel Sherman‘s unauthorized biography of Roger Ailes set for release tomorrow, New York Times media reporter David Carr uses his Monday column to discuss his own coverage of Fox News and its founder over the years:

I’ve dealt with Mr. Ailes while covering the news media, and beyond his charms and smarts, he is animated by a belief that just about everyone would like to see him laid low. Even as he has vanquished his opponents, he clings to the role of aggrieved underdog, and Mr. Sherman’s critical book reinforces that worldview.

Jacob Weisberg, the chairman of the Slate Group was asked to write the New York Times Book Review on “The Loudest Voice in the Room.”

What drives this need to create conflict? In his actually fair and balanced, carefully documented biography, Sherman struggles to come up with an answer. (He does so, it bears noting, without the cooperation of his subject, who set a new benchmark for biographical obstruction by working with the journalist Zev Chafets to rush a more sympathetic portrayal out first.) Ailes’s father, who was abandoned by a father with a degree from Harvard, spent his career working as a foreman in the maintenance department at Packard Electric, an automotive manufacturer. But Ailes himself grew up cared and provided for in an intact family

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