Dec
23
2014

The Weird World of the Washington Post, Where Reagan Never Met Gorbachev

Reagan and Gorbachev

Reading the Washington Post opinion pages can be like reading dispatches from a parallel universe. You get that sense of alternative history from Post deputy editorial editor Jackson Diehl's latest.

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

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
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

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
10
2014

ABC Makes US the Victim in CIA Torture Report Story

abc-worldwide-alert

The Senate report revealed shocking, even sickening treatment of the CIA's captives. But ABC's focus wasn't on the US government abuses detailed in the report, but "the fear that its release could threaten American lives."

Dec
07
2014

Reporting the News Like Black Lives Don't Matter

Protester faces NYPD in Times Square (photo: AP)

"Black lives matter" is the rallying cry of the burgeoning movement against police killings. The Associated Press, covering that movement, has produced a perfect example of what journalism looks like when black lives don't matter.

Dec
03
2014

An 'Entertaining' Lesson on How Cops Can 'Win the Media' After They Kill

ContinuingEducationCrop

The St. Louis Police Academy held a special class for "upper-echelon law enforcement professionals" on how to "WIN WITH THE MEDIA" after an "officer-involved shooting."

Dec
03
2014

Columnist Often Called 'Racist' Doesn't Think Police Activists Should Use That Word

Violent Crime in 6 large cities

Perhaps Cohen is sensitive to people being called racist because he's been called a racist by many observers–and not without good reason.

Nov
26
2014

On Israel/Palestine, NYT's Public Editor Seems Reluctant to Heed Own Advice

New York Times info graphic on Gaza

One of New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan's recommendations to her paper for improving its coverage of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is "Stop straining for symmetry." It's advice she seems reluctant to take herself.

Nov
19
2014

PBS to Treasury Official: 'Why Can't You Just Bomb Them?'

pbs-warner-isis

It seems it's hard to talk to an elite media host for very long before they start fantasizing about blowing things up.

Nov
18
2014

A 'Child' Is Missing–From a New York Times Headline

Boy in Jabalya refugee camp, Gaza. (cc photo: Giles)

Did New York Times editors leave out of a headline the fact that it was a child who had been shot because they didn't want readers to get too upset about Israel doing the shooting?