As new models for funding journalism are explored, some people are raising concerns about how foundations, for example, might unduly influence the content of the news they underwrite (CJR.org, 5/22/12). Such questions are valid, but they shouldn’t be taken as suggestions that such arrangements threaten novel encroachments on a now-pristine field. It shows how inured we’ve become to news brought to us by private corporations, who in fact care very much about the content of the news they sponsor or, as outlet owners, produce—that it not be too downbeat, or provide a platform for anyone asking hard questions about corporate […]
Search Results for: Steve Askin
Owners and advertisers vs. journalism
When Kids Die, War Is the Real Victim When a U.S. staff sergeant was accused of killing 16 civilians in an Afghan village, nine of them children, corporate media treated it as a crisis—for the war and those waging it. The massacre was “a public relations headache” (AP, 3/12/12) and “a public relations disaster” (Reuters, 3/12/12). “Killings Threaten Afghan Mission” (3/12/12) was a USA Today headline; the NPR website labeled its reports “Killings a Blow to U.S. Strategy in Afghanistan” (3/13/12) and “Afghan Shootings Could Complicate U.S. Mission” (3/12/12). The New York Times (3/12/12) talked about “a feeling of siege […]
In the December 2011 issue of Extra!, an article on Steve Jobs cited playwright Mike Daisey’s account of his investigation into conditions for workers making Apple products at China’s Foxconn plant. Daisey’s investigation was also cited in a March 2012 piece on Apple’s labor practices. Thanks to the public radio show Marketplace (3/16/12), we now know that Daisey fabricated parts of his story, though it was presented as fact on the January 6, 2012, edition of public radio’s This American Life (which promptly offered a retraction—3/16/12) and in a New York Times op-ed (10/6/11—subsequently re-edited to remove a dubious paragraph). […]
Lobbyists help media pay attention to employment
When debate heated up in November over the Keystone XL pipeline—a 1,700-mile-long structure that would carry oil from Canada’s tar sands deposits to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast—reporters soon found themselves chasing the answer to a question: How many jobs would be lost if the pipeline didn’t happen? Wall Street Journal senior editor Mary Anastasia O’Grady suggested on Fox News (10/28/11) that the pipeline would create “118,000 indirect jobs” from “feeding and housing all of these people who are going to work on the pipeline,” a number that her Journal editorial board colleague Collin Levy repeated in a Web […]
'Who would disagree' with fake Lincoln quote?
After FAIR's recent action alert (10/27/11) concerning the PBS NewsHour's reports minimizing--and even celebrating--economic inequality, NewsHour correspondent Paul Solman posted a long response on the PBS website (10/31/11) that attempted to answer the criticism. Solman began by expressing his appreciation for the "avalanche" of feedback, "hostile though most of it has been." He admits that guest Richard Epstein (10/26/11)--who made the case in favor of inequality--was incorrect to attribute this quote to Abraham Lincoln: "You do not make the poor rich by making the rich poor." But then Solman writes that the sentiment behind it is beyond dispute: But when […]
Copyright suits final hope or last gasp of print media?
Righthaven LLC has emerged from the ongoing meltdown of the newspaper industry with a new business model: sue the hell out of every person who reprints, in part or in full, any article without the express consent of the article’s copyright owner. From March through November 2010, Righthaven has filed over 160 suits against individual bloggers, Web domain registrants and non-profits such as Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) and the Second Amendment Foundation, as well as political organizations and candidates. Suits brought by Righthaven have three key […]
Download MP3 This week on CounterSpin: The theme in coverage of the current Mideast peace negotiations going on in Washington between Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas appears to be skepticism. But does being critical of this process mean you don't want peace? We'll hear from Josh Ruebner, the national advocacy director for the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation. Also on the show: Grading teachers based on how well their students perform on tests is a popular practice with so-called education reformers, White House policy makers and journalists. You almost wouldn't know that the […]
Download MP3 This week on CounterSpin: The release of the Afghanistan WikiLeaks documents brought the Afghan war back onto the front pages, but much of the attention went to Time magazine's cover, featuring a disfigured Afghan woman and the headline "What Happens if we leave Afghanistan." Suddenly the Afghan War debate reverted back to its 2001 template, with the rescue of Afghan women as the noble rationale for U.S. military action. We'll get a reaction from radio host Sonali Kolhatkar of the Afghan Women's Mission. Also on CounterSpin today: If you've been following the rising tensions between Colombia and Venezuela, […]