TVNewser Show TVNewser FishbowlDC AgencySpy TVSpy LostRemote PRNewser SocialTimes AllFacebook 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

The State of Journalism

Unlike Many Music Journalists, NPR’s Ann Powers Does Her Homework

AnnPowersNPRPicFive years ago, NPR music critic Ann Powers relocated from Los Angeles to, of all places, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The trigger for the move was her husband Eric Weisbard‘s acceptance of a teaching position in the American studies department at the University of Alabama.

Powers tells student newspaper The Crimson White that she did not expect her move to correspond with a musical-artists renaissance in the U.S. south. She also reveals to Francie Johnson that laziness in the music journalism business remains pervasive:

To prepare for her interviews, Powers listens to the artists’ catalogs and spends time researching online and in music archives. “You’d be shocked to know how many times I’ve talked to artists, and they’ve said journalists will come in completely unprepared,” Powers said. “That just seems ridiculous to me. You wouldn’t talk to the president without knowing the issues. Why do you think it’s okay to talk to an artist without knowing their work?”

Read more

Mediabistro Course

Freelancing 101 Online Boot Camp

Freelancing 101Starting April 28, this online event will show you the best way to start your freelancing career, from the first steps of self-advertising and marketing, to building your schedule and managing clients. By the end of this online boot camp you will have a plan for making a profitable career as a freelancer, and the skill set to devote yourself to it. Register now! 

Kate Upton: ‘Isn’t That Lovely Whenever Media Makes Up Something’

ShutterstockKateUptonSports Illustrated subscribers the world over can breathe a sigh of relief. Supermodel Kate Upton is not looking to get a breast reduction. We repeat; the news was WRONG.

Actually, more than wrong. The news was MADE UP. For shame on British tabloid The Sun on Sunday for putting these words in Upton’s mouth. And for glory on the Daily Mail for today setting the supermodel record straight:

Speaking in an interview on Australian radio station 2DayFM on Wednesday while promoting her new movie The Other Woman, the 21-year-old denied ever saying she wanted a breast reduction.

“I actually never said that,” Upton told hosts Dan and Maz. “If someone asked me this question and actually cared to hear what I have to say about my own personal body… I would say that I feel like all women feel like they don’t have life perfect…”

Read more

Newspaper Reporter Now Only Second Worst Career

Good news, newspaper reporters of the nation, your job is now only the second worst career choice a person could make. CareerCast’s annual survey of the top 200 jobs placed newspaper journalist at 199, barely edging out lumberjack, at 200. In last year’s survey, newspaper journalist was ranked dead last.

The best job, according to the report, is mathematician. We don’t know how doing math for a living is better than reporting, but hey, you can’t argue with the supreme authority that is CareerCast.

Here are some other jobs that are supposedly better than newspaper reporter:

  • Appliance repair person (#73). The Maytag Man? C’mon.
  • Zoologist (#91). Cleaning chimpanzee poop is probably better than having to quote anonymous sources.
  • Dishwasher (#124). We think CareerCast is just trying to be mean here.
  • Meter Reader (#183). Yeah, this is just getting downright rude.

[Image: Flickr/Compas]

Here’s a Twist: Plagiarized Writer Feels Bad… for the Plagiarizer

TrustMeImLyingCoverHave you ever been plagiarized? There are all sorts of forms of this rampant Web art: sourcing without proper blockquoting; blatant cut-and-pasting by a mysterious SEO operation; Bollywood borrowing of entertainment copy.

In the case of New York Observer/Betabeat editor-at-large Ryan Holiday, chunks of his 2012 book Trust Me, I’m Lying were co-opted for a 2014 article in Arbitrage magazine. As Holiday relates, he had to jump through some outdated masthead hoops to finally get to Arbitrage publisher David Alexander.  However, admirably, Holiday from the get-go indicated to the Toronto-based outlet that he was not looking to get the writer in question fired. Ultimately, that entreaty was ignored at the Canada end, leaving Holiday with very mixed feelings:

The writer is an adult. He has to deal with the consequences of his choices. I get that. I get that I have to as well – I decided to make a complaint, I knew where it might end. But Arbitrage is not some tiny publication. It has numerous writers and a chain of command. They all failed here. Worse yet, they failed when they had an opportunity to respond somberly, fairly and ethically.

Read more

Entertainment Weekly Beta-Testing an Old Concept: Unpaid Contributors

They are just three little words. But the media community shudder that goes along with community.ew.com is much larger.

EWCommunityBanner

Per Lucia Moses at DigiDay, the once-venerable pop culture king of newsstands and weekly subscriptions is formally stooping to the level of unpaid contributors. Complete with double-speak or maybe even, in this case, triple:

“The expansion here hopefully allows us to tap into new audiences who are increasingly having conversations in fragmented locations,” said Liz White, general manager of EW.com and people.com.

Read more

This Just In! Hilaria Baldwin is a Mom, Yoga Instructor and Instagram User

DailyMailLogoIt’s hard out there for a “Daily Mail Reporter.” The boss is staring over your shoulder in the tap-tap-tap sweatshop newsroom, wondering what clicks you have brought in lately. And so, just three minutes after posting a March 20 Hilaria Baldwin fluff piece, there is the need for a 9:35 p.m. update.

Maybe a caption for one of the Hilaria-with-child photos needed to be tweaked. Maybe ten giant-sized .jpegs just wasn’t quite enough. Who knows?

In any case, the Daily Mail piece wound up with the hallmarks of a vessel for the Web’s most-read newspaper:

- Gargantuan headline (19 words; 120 characters);
- Sexual innuendo (“Hilaria’s early morning Instagram snap was sure to please her husband Alec, who was most certainly the lucky photographer.”)
- Cram-tastic use (15+) of the SEO bullseye “yoga”.

Read more

Alt-Weekly Editor Dismisses NYT Op-Ed ‘Drivel’

BrowardPalmBeachNewTimesLogoDeirdra Funcheon, managing editor of Village Media Group Florida alt-weekly New Times Broward-Palm Beach, has some choice words today in response to a New York Times op-ed earlier in the week by Baltimore City Paper editor and author Baynard Woods. The op-ed was headlined “Are Alt Weeklies Over?

Funcheon writes that despite the fact that the financial struggles of alt-weeklies are similar to those of just about every other U.S. media tier, these publications have been unfairly singled out in recent years by doomsday-sayers. She has no idea why an alt-weekly fraternity member such as Woods would choose to “castrate” himself in the NYT, especially for such tediously familiar territory:

Not only is the article a rehashing of the 2012 NYT piece “Are Alternative Weeklies Toast?”, which was itself a rehashing of a BuzzFeed article (Did ya catch that? The NYT follows Buzzfeed and then dares to condescend to alt-weeklies?), but its logic was really dumb: alt-weeklies are important, and another company just came and saw value in my paper and paid money for it, so now all alt-weeklies are dying and everyone is “glum”!

Read more

Study: Media Still Dominated by Dudes

A new study — that is sure to make people say “Shocking!” or “Nothing new to me!” — has found that men continue to dominate the media business.

The Women’s Media Center’s latest Status of Women in the Media report showed that the percentage of women on newsroom staffs was a dismal 36 percent, where it has been since 1999. Also, among America’s “three most prestigious newspapers and four newspaper syndicates,” male op-ed writers out number women four to one.

The report gets worse from there. Below are some other higlights. Or lowlights.

  • A two-month long review of news sites and newspapers showed that 82 percent of all movie reviews were written by men.
  • A three-month long review of New York Times front page articles found that men were quoted three times more often than women.
  • Among news directors working at local radio stations, only 20 percent were women.
  • A survey of 150 sports centric print publications and websites found that 90 percent of editors were white males.

Gauging the Next ‘Golden Age’ of Journalism

We’re still mulling over remarks made last Friday in Lawrence, KS by ProPublica founder and executive chairman Paul Steiger. Accepting the prestigious William Allen White Foundation National Citation from the University of Kansas’s White School of Journalism and Mass Communications, he talked a lot about “golden ages” of journalism.

WilliamAllenWhiteMedalLogo

According to Steiger, the last such era started in the mid-1950s and ran through the mid-1970s. Ergo, ending right around the time a massive amount of students were compelled by Woodward and Bernstein to head to J-school. Steiger takes issue with Henry Blodget‘s 2013 declaration that a new golden age is upon us. He says we’re perhaps close, but not quite there yet:

“Creating millions of lone-wolf, single-person bloggers doesn’t get us to a golden age. It can give us cat photos that make us giggle, news scoops involving an original fact or two, a trenchant analysis of finance or politics or sculpture, video of Miley Cyrus or Taylor Swift nuzzling their latest boyfriends, or possibly some movie and book reviews worth trusting. All nice to have but not game-changing.”

Read more

Right Now, Pierre Omidyar Knows Three Things About First Look Media

In the shadow of the Seahawks vs. the Broncos, another 2014 Super Battle is taking shape: Jeff Bezos vs. Pierre Omidyar.

Today’s memo to Washington Post staff from the paper’s executive editor Marty Baron is one of the best things you’ll read from within the guts of a print media outlet anywhere, anytime this year. It hints at the promise and potential we all envisioned upon first hearing about the most surprising and flush U.S. media acquisition of 2013.

Then there’s Omidyar’s heartening, hand-drawn-animation teaser for First Look Media. Released at the beginning of the week, it attaches to the Glenn Greenwald operation a comforting voice of patronage and – again – suggests that the money is going to be put where the media mouths should rightly belong.

Read more

NEXT PAGE >>