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Media Beat

Atlantic Cities, Politico Mag Both Launch Year-Long Tech/Infrastructure Series

It seems “urban reinvention” is all the rage these days. Both The Atlantic Cities and Politico Magazine announced separately today that they are launching year-long reporting projects to cover technological innovations in American cities.

Atlantic Cities, a standalone site from Atlantic Media that focuses on innovation and urban issues, will launch a series focused on transportation called “The Future of Transportation.” The nine-month special series is supported by The Rockefeller Foundation and led by Cities editors Sommer Mathis and Eric Jaffe, and will “examine the full extent of America’s transportation challenges and explore how U.S. cities are reinventing the way we navigate them.”

The series will be presented in three parts, starting with “The Perfect Commute,” then “The Smartest Trip,” and finally “Design in Motion.” The introduction to “The Future of Transportation” series went live today, including an overview of the history of American commuting.

Politico Magazine’s series  ”What Works,” is presented by JPMorgan Chase and “spotlights a new city each month and the policies, strategies and technologies that are transforming each city.” They will also take “What Works” live throughout the year with a series of events on the transformation of America’s cities to be held in different locations across the country, culminating in a year-end conversation with thought leaders and policymakers in Washington.

The debut feature, online today, explores the reinvention of Pittsburgh, fueled in part by the growth of a homegrown robot industry.

In Defense of Jake Tapper

jake_tapper_x200Embattled CNN anchor Jake Tapper took to Facebook last night to defend himself against the onslaught of criticism he has received over his Friday interview with former Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell.

“We need to have open, honest, and yes uncomfortable conversations about this war,” Tapper wrote. “We can’t do that if any time someone sees things differently they’re accused of hating the troops. Questions HONOR the troops. And our freedom to ask them is what they fight and die for.”

We couldn’t agree more.

Indeed, in this humble blogger’s opinion, the witch hunt provoked by The Blaze‘s Oliver Darcy and Glenn Beck is appalling and the only truly offensive aspect of this whole Jake-Tapper-Hates-the-Troops affair. Tapper did nothing more than ask the kind of questions that many, if not most, Americans are thinking about the War in Afghanistan. Luttrell’s reaction was unwarranted, though perhaps understandable. The faux-controversy being ginned up after the fact is what is actually disrespectful to the memory of the soldiers who died in Afghanistan. Darcy and Beck should be ashamed of themselves for  intentionally obfuscating the story, purely for the sake of driving up page views. Betsy Rothstein at the Daily Caller has a great piece up which expounds in more detail on why this is true -we suggest you go read it.

But no one does a better job of defending Jake Tapper than Jake Tapper, so I’ll let the man speak for himself:

Regarding this controversy…

I’ve spent years reporting on troops and their families so it pains me that my use of the word “senseless” to describe the 19 SEALs and troops killed in Operation Red Wings has become the focus of this interview with an American hero and has been misinterpreted as a reflection of my thinking the deaths meant nothing and than somehow I’m not grateful. 

I would hope that my reporting trips to Iraq and Afghanistan, my book about Combat Outpost Keating, my two CNN documentaries about Medal of Honor recipients, and my continued reporting on veterans and troops and their families would belie that accusation. 

Apparently not.

Read the whole message after the jump.

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Christie Crap: Politico‘s Poop Cruise?

In a very Zucker-esque move, Politico is going all-in on the Chris Christie “Bridgeghazi”  (h/t The Wire for that little gem) Story today. By our count, there are TWENTY TWO Christie stories on the Politico homepage. Yowza! Not since CPAC have we had this much Christie all up in our grillz.

All aboard! Hitch a ride with FishbowlDC on Politico‘s Gratuitous Chris Christie Crap Cruise:

chris christie on election night

1.) Christie’s damage control
2.) My time with scandal-hit Christie aide
3.) 15 Christie controversies you missed
4.) Giuliani: Bridge scandal a ‘prank’
5.) The aides felled by Bridgegate
6.) Mayor: I take Christie ‘at his word’
7.) Christie: ‘I am embarrassed’
8.) Media’s mixed response to Christie
9.) Crisis gurus praise Christie’s response
10.) The many faces of Chris Christie
11.) Christie presser: 2 hours in 2 minutes
12.) Class-action suit filed over bridge
13.) Christie ally pleads Fifth to panel
14.) Christie scandal tests Wall Street
15.) N.J. pol wants Christie federal probe
16.) Kean: Christie questions remain
17.) Buono: Christie report ‘horrifying’
18.) Boehner stands by Christie
19.) Friedman: Christie story ‘really sick’
20.) Christie’s critics savor his misfortune
21.) Jokes, jeers follow Christie presser
22.) Pelosi: Christie bridge vs. Super Bowl

(h/t tipster Marty Chase)



Jake Tapper Resolves to be More Jewish in 2014

We here at FishbowlDC long ago gave up any pretense at self-improvement. But other DC journos aren’t quite as jaded. Lesser-known Bezos property The Express has talked to some local journos about their new year’s resolutions -and the results are revealing. For example: Jake Tapper wants to go to more Hebrew School, question-mark-guy Matthew Lesko has a brand new tattoo, and NBC 4 anchor Aaron Gilchrist doesn’t actually know the city that well. Here are some of the best resolutions from DC media personalities:

Jake Tapper
“Now that my kids are 4 and 6, I want to spend more time getting involved in our spiritual health, in our synagogue — more Sabbath dinners on Friday night, more attendance at Hebrew school, more participation in holidays and, I think, just more discussion of the mysteries of life.” -Jake Tapper, CNN

Cokie Roberts“It’s to be more like my mother. She died this summer, and I have been reading the 1,000 letters I have gotten, from people writing about the incredible things she did for them. She, Lindy Boggs, was a member of Congress for nine terms and then U.S. ambassador to the Vatican. She always treated everyone with great love, respect and dignity. As a reminder, I always wear a ring made out of two of her old rings.” -Cokie Roberts, NPR


Jummy Olabanji“Mine is to run my first half marathon. I found a training program online; it’s a 20-week program. Another goal of mine is to stick to the training program so I don’t pass out during the race.” - Jummy Olabanji, ABC 7




More celebrity resolutions after the jump

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We notice things here at FishbowlDC. And one thing we’ve noticed is Lists. People love Lists. There’s this thing called Buzzfeed, for example -very popular. Thus we’ve decided to create our own Top Ten List. Behold: FishbowlDC’s Top Ten List of Top Ten Lists! Enjoy…

10) Washingtonian‘s top 10 DC restaurants. Essentially food porn. You’re welcome.

9) Forbe‘s top 10 healthcare quotes. BORRRRIINNGGGG. But also interesting.

8) IMDb’s worst movies. Olympus Has Fallen doesn’t really deserve to be on here does it????

7) NPR’s top 10 TV shows. Can ya guess what number 1 is? Here’s a hint: It’s Breaking Bad.

6) TIME‘s most surprising photos. Warning: this list is a major time-suck.

5) The Hill‘s most memorable quotes. Politicians saying crazy shit. It never gets old.

4) WIRED and Know Your Meme’s top 10 Internet memes. Surprise! “Twerking” is only number 5.

3) City Paper‘s best DC music. Don’t even think of heading up to CoHi or Bloomingdale without checking out this list.

2) Dylan Byer’s top 10 journos to watch in 2014. Spoiler alert: no FishbowlDC staff were included this year. You probably weren’t either.

1)  Top ten richest counties in the country  Believe it or not, 6 are in the DC Metro area. Way to go insanely rich contractors of Fairfax County! You’re winning!


Good News Journos -Your Industry Is Only Nearly Extinct!

Image courtesy of

According to Yahoo!, at least, y’all out there in DC Journo Land might want to consider switching careers. Specifically -get into PR. Yahoo! reporter Andrea Duchon has talked to some people on the Internet(one of whom is named Gidwani) and they decided that journalism -among other careers – is kaputz. Specifically, they expect the industry to shed 8% of jobs (3,900) by 2020. This is mostly because of, well, bloggers like us (awkward) and Twitter:

Gidwani says that a number of factors have contributed to the decline of the modern day journalist, from dwindling newspaper readership to the consolidation of news organizations.

‘The real driving force, however, has been the Internet, where millions of amateur reporters blog for free, hundreds of sites copy, aggregate, and curate other people’s content (often without due credit), and millions of millennials have learned to get their news from alternative sources, such as Twitter.’

To be clear -we do not blog for free. Still…awkward.

The good news is the public relations industry is expected to explode by 23% or 58,200 jobs by 2020! That’s great! Journalists and PR professionals are practically the same. The only real difference is that journalists educate the people about the truth, and PR professionals educate the people about products! And that’s a very small, small difference when you think about it…

Sorry for ruining your careers.

ABC’s Jonathan Karl on Why He Uses Twitter ‘In Doses’


In the old days, a good reporter’s responsibilities included pounding the pavement (or the phone), getting the story, and writing it up for that evening’s newscast or next day’s paper.

As ABC Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl tells mediabistroTV in part two of Media Beat, those days are long gone.

Social media has changed the game, adding the need for reporters to both monitor and engage. An early “reluctant adapter” to Twitter, Karl now says it’s impossible to cover his beat without it. But he cautions against overuse: “You can’t be distracted by all that stuff.”

And what advice does he have for up and coming reporters in this new digital age? Don’t forget the basics.

ABC’s Jonathan Karl on Pushing Beyond the Official White House Line

How does a top network reporter break through the official White House talking points? ABC’s Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl has been busy trying — and in the process has gotten into it twice over the last month with White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, including just yesterday.

In this installment of Media Beat, Karl spoke to TVNewser’s Jordan Chariton about the need to remain skeptical of what the White House is telling you, regardless of who’s in office. Karl also revealed some interesting behind-the-scenes tidbits from campaign 2012. You might be surprised to know how little Karl saw candidate Mitt Romney—even when flying on the same plane.

Intern To Investigate Unpaid Interns

Earlier this summer, ProPublica raised nearly $24,000 to investigate internships, with a focus on “documenting the emerging intern economy in the United States – a story hidden in plain sight.”

Yesterday, USA Today reported that ProPublica has hired recent-grad Casey McDermott to take on the task—but as an intern herself. As far as we can tell, that should probably just be a title only.

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NPR’s New Homepage Offers Ease, Options and Primo Real Estate for Sponsors

NPR updated its homepage yesterday and at first glance, it looks pretty traditional—like a simple blog layout with posts lined down a central column. There’s more too it than that, the design is “responsive” which means it shifts itself around automatically depending on the size of the display on your device (incidentally, NPR‘s native app still remains the best way to get its content on a mobile device, but it’s nice to have the browser option, too).

They’ve also added infinite scrolling, with a twist. Unlike say, Pinterest, new content doesn’t automatically pop up when you reach the bottom. Instead, you’re presented with a couple buttons asking you what type of stories you’d like to load. News or Arts & Life or Books, for example. You don’t have to click through to another page like on most sites, but you still have to click.

What really caught our eye, though, was a bold choice about how to highlight NPR‘s sponsors…

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