Dec
22
2014

USA Today Wants You to Think Killings of Police Are on the Rise

Vox Chart on Felonious Police Killings

USA Today could have averaged several recent years to see if there was a meaningful trend. But instead the newspaper decided to feed the narrative that police officers are under attack.

Dec
21
2014

Gift-Giving Advice From the New York Times

Rich person with Faberge egg (photo: Damon Winter/NYT)

Do you have too much money? The New York Times has some shopping tips for you.

Dec
18
2014

People Who Live in 'Flyspecks' Shouldn't Fling Metaphors

Flesh fly (cc photo: JJ Harrison/Wikimedia)

The second paragraph of the Washington Post's news story (12/17/14) on President Obama normalizing relations with Cuba begins, "Cuba is a flyspeck of an island that long ago ceased to be a threat to the United States."

Dec
17
2014

More Pointless Campaign 2016 Journalism

Jeb Bush (cc photo: World Affairs Council of Philadelphia)

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush announced that he sort of could be running for the Republican presidential nomination. Of course, that drew substantial media attention.

Dec
17
2014

WaPo Won't Say 'Torture'–Unless It Makes Torture Sound Better

Jen Sorensen: When Is Torture Torture?

The Washington Post's poll most likely found that a small minority of Americans thought torture was justified after 9/11. In other words, pretty much the opposite of what the Post's headline said.

Dec
17
2014

Dana Milbank and the Bias of Centrism

Jim DeMint and Elizabeth Warren (cc photos: Gage Skidmore, New America Foundation)

To argue that Elizabeth Warren is the left equivalent of Jim DeMint, one must exhibit no interest in the substance of politics.

Dec
16
2014

Fox's O'Reilly: 'All the Wolves Have Been Muslims'

Mongolian wolves, Zurich Zoo (cc photo: Tambako the Jaguar)

Every lone wolf terrorist has been Muslim, says the no spin Fox host.

Dec
15
2014

NBC: Someday We Might Learn That Drones Kill Civilians

drone-chucktodd

Meet the Press covers US drone attacks. But why do they want viewers to think it's too hard to know how many innocents have died?

Dec
15
2014

'Disruptive, Demanding' Elizabeth Warren vs. 'Can-Do' Pragmatists

Hillary Clinton (cc photo: Brett Weinstein)

Media coverage portrays populist Democrats as presenting a "threat" to pragmatic centrism.

Dec
14
2014

Update: NPR Doesn't Ban 'Torture'–but Offers Euphemisms to Use in Its Place

Abu Ghraib prisoner

This is an update to "Refusing to Take Sides, NPR Takes Sides With Torture Deniers" (FAIR Blog, 12/12/14). As Romenesko (12/12/14) points out, NPR's ethics department has been issuing guidance on the use of the word "torture." The first memo, issued August 8, cites a message from then-NPR vice president for news Ellen Weiss, written in November 2009: Contrary to some commentaries, NPR did not ban the word "torture." Rather, we gave our journalists guidance about how to avoid loaded language about interrogation techniques, realizing that no matter what words are chosen, we risk the appearance of taking one side […]

Dec
12
2014

FAIR TV: US Victimology, Equal Time for Torturers and Hypocritical Factchecking Lectures

fairtv1212cbs

This week: ABC World News prepared viewers for the Senate report on CIA torture…by warning that its publication could harm Americans. Plus TV news covers the torture report by giving a platform to torture advocates. And a pundit who was dead wrong about the Iraq War shares his thoughts about the need for Rolling Stone to do better factchecking. Watch:  

Dec
12
2014

Refusing to Take Sides, NPR Takes Sides With Torture Deniers

Blood trails at Abu Ghraib.

National Public Radio, following the lead of the Washington Post, tries to avoid applying the word "torture" in its own voice when covering US torture.

Dec
11
2014

Investigative Reporting = Working With Ad Partners to Monetize the Audience

Cincinnati Enquirer's Carolyn Washburn

Many would think there was something wrong with an investigative reporter who consults directly with an advertiser to think of ways for them to profit from the news. But, here we are.