Ta-Nehisi Coates writes in the Atlantic that there was never a golden age of freelancing for blacks.
Freelance journalist Nate Thayer prompted a debate last week when he publicly declined an opportunity to write for the Atlantic magazine for free. But in the arguments over the benefits of getting paid only with exposure, Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote on Wednesday, one element has been missing: race.
"Two things helped me break through," Coates wrote on his Atlantic blog. "The first, being vouched for by someone in a position of power who had a relationship with someone else in a position of power. I met that person when costs of investment were low: I worked for David Carr [at the Washington City Paper] at a rate of $100 dollars a week and ten cents a word for anything I published. The first summer I worked for him, I made $1,700. I did not consider myself underpaid. This was 1996. The New Republic had just told the world that black people had evolved to be stupid, and it seemed like every week they were saying something just as racist. I was at Howard University, surrounded by a community of brilliant black people, cut off from the Ivies. None of them had the contacts or the resources to reply. They just had to take it. I can't tell you how much that angered me. I was made in that moment. And when I got my first break in writing, I didn't think about being ripped off. I thought about whipping ass. I haven't changed.
"The second thing was the destruction of the monopoly on publication by gate-keepers. When [Slate's Matthew] Yglesias wrote me, I didn't care a whit about payment. I cared about a world wherein writers wrote stories like this, and no black people were around to answer.
". . . What I am asking you to do is to avoid an appeal to a more noble past. I lived there. It wasn't noble. It was fucked up. Like right now is fucked up. When you ask me to show solidarity with writers who aren't being paid, you should also ask yourself what solidarity white magazine writers have shown over the years with struggling black writers who could not break in. You are appalled that Nate Thayer was once offered $125,000 to write for The Atlantic, and was then offered nothing. Fair enough. Are you equally appalled that there were virtually no black writers who could have gotten the same deal?
"Over the past few days, I have been told that I am the 'exception,' that I 'won the lottery.' No one thinks that Thayer won the lottery when he was offered his contract. No one sees the compromised ground underneath. I am sorry this new world is not fair. I am all for doing something to make it more fair. But while we are doing so, remember something: The old world was never fair. It was war. I am, indeed, an exception to the rule. But not the rule you think."
"San Diego police may follow other agencies by ending media credentials as the spread of bloggers and online publications make it more difficult to define who is a journalist," Elliot Spagat reported Sunday for the Associated Press. "The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security stopped issuing credentials last month and the Orange County Sheriff's Department in Southern California did so in December.
" 'With the advancements in digital media and the proliferation of bloggers, podcasters and freelancers, it has become challenging to determine who should receive a press pass,' the Sheriff's Department said.
"At stake for journalists is whether they can cover certain stories. At stake for the general public is who delivers their news. . . . "
A gunshot damaged a window on the second floor of the offices of the Richmond, Va., Free Press, [PDF] ripping window blinds and scattering debris in the Free Press newsroom, the African American weekly reported in its March 14-16 edition.
"Thankfully none of our staffers were on duty when our window was bullet-holed and desks were dotted with glass," the newspaper reported, adding that the March 3 vandalism was reported to the FBI as well as local police.
"Detective [Dale] Shamburg suggested the shot came from a shotgun blast fired from a nearby parking lot across from the Richmond Times-Dispatch and the blast may have come from partygoers.
"We do not know the source of this criminal behavior, but we do know that it is an uncivilized act that fits in the same category as past and ongoing schemes to shut down the Free Press.
"The newsroom blast is the latest in destruction to Free Press property since the newspaper opened in Downtown 21 years ago.
"Examples of the previous vandalism: Distribution boxes flattened by big-tire vehicles; Free Press editions burned in distribution boxes; racist messages scrawled on the front of the distribution boxes; boxes stolen and papers thrown into trash containers; and the fencing of our boxes to block reader access to copies of the Free Press.
The story concluded, "The Free Press will not be intimidated. Neither will we bow to political and economic schemes viciously intended to control the Free Press."
The gunshot was mentioned Friday during a luncheon panel in Washington at the annual Black Press Week of the National Newspaper Publishers Association, a trade group of the publishers of black weekly newspapers.
Harvard Law professor Charles J. Ogletree told the group that "when something happens to one editor, it happens to all of us. We march for everything else, why can't we march for the black press?"
In other discussion on the panel, Jineea Butler, founder of the Social Services of Hip Hop and the Hip Hop Union, told the publishers, "I represent entrepreneurs in hip hop. We don't know that you exist. The black press should be teaching us, should be engaging us. I need to know what happened before us. The people that came before us don't think that we want the information. Lead us! Tell us!"
Civil rights and social activist Benjamin Chavis, a co-founder with hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons of the nonprofit Hip-Hop Summit Action Network, said one problem is that hip-hop is visual. "We have more to write about, but we're writing less," he said, suggesting that NNPA ought to have its own publishing house.
At an awards dinner Thursday night, Susan L. Taylor, former longtime editor-in-chief of Essence magazine, also raised the literacy issue. Now leading the National Cares Mentoring Movement, active in 60 cities, Taylor told the group that 58 percent of black fourth-graders are functionally illiterate. She urged the publishers to "bring more young people into your companies" and to hire more copy editors so that black newspapers are "pristine." Taylor received an award for "community empowerment."
Business journalists in the United States tend to focus on personalities rather than changes in the economic balance of power that are giving Third World countries more importance, Peter Blair Henry, dean of the Leonard N. Stern School of Business at New York University, told Journal-isms on Friday. "Foreign journalists have more of the big picture."
In Washington on a book tour, the Jamaican-born economist told a breakfast meeting of NYU alumni of a "trust deficit" between the Third World and the developed nations that he argued is more important than the fiscal deficit in the United States.
It's more significant "because the trust deficit is undermining the willingness and ability of emerging nations to generate the growth to help lead us out of our economic problems," an argument he makes in "Turnaround: Third World Lessons for First World Growth."
Henry, one of the few African Americans to lead a mainstream U.S. business school, said he was teaching his students to think globally.
Henry writes in the book, ". . . the growth rate of developing countries surged after 1995, and their output now accounts for almost 50 percent of global economic activity. In spite of this fact, the developing world receives short shrift in the realm of international economic relations. The voice and representation of developing countries as multilateral institutions pale in comparison to their contributions to the world economy.
"The WTO [World Trade Organization] has failed to secure a global trade deal that provides equal access to global markets for emerging countries, and no citizen of the developing world has ever been chosen to lead the IMF [International Monetary Fund] or the World Bank. To make matters worse, the challenging economic outlook tempts governments of advanced countries to look inward, to adopt various forms of protectionism, and to pursue growth strategies eerily reminiscent of those they urged developing countries to abandon in the recent past. . . ."
George E. Curry, National Newspaper Publishers Association: China Prepares to Become the World's Largest Economy
Peter Blair Henry with Kojo Nnamdi, "the Kojo Nnamdi Show," WAMU-FM, Washington: "Turnaround: Third World Lessons For First World Growth" (audio)
"Bobby Ghosh has been named the editor of Time International, Time Inc. Editor-in-Chief Martha Nelson and Time Managing Editor Rick Stengel told staffers in an announcement Friday morning," Andrew Beaujon reported for the Poynter Institute. " '[T]his appointment has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that he saved me from getting tear-gassed in Tahrir Square last year,' the memo reads.
"Jim Frederick is vacating the position 'to move on to other challenges,' the memo says. He will become a contributing editor."
Ghosh has been with Time since 1997. "Bobby, quite simply, is a magnificent journalist who has done the highest level of work that one can aspire to in our profession," Nelson and Stengel wrote. "During his five years as our Baghdad bureau chief throughout the worst of the Iraq war, Bobby wrote two of our most unforgettable cover stories: Life in Hell, and Sunnis vs. Shi’ites. He was not only fearless in his work in Iraq but he was the guardian of all who worked for us in Baghdad. . . ."
Ghosh is Indian American, but the publication has no full-time black correspondents.
Meanwhile, Jeff Bewkes, CEO of the parent Time Warner Inc., announced creation of the company's first Multicultural Innovation Council, "a company-wide group of senior executives that will focus on one of our greatest collective growth opportunities."
Bewkes wrote, "We have made terrific progress in reaching diverse audiences on a global scale. A study presented at our November 2012 Multicultural Business Summit showed that across all forms of media, Time Warner reaches about 95% of multicultural adults in the U.S. However, engaging younger, increasingly diverse audiences and expanding our global reach remains an imperative for all our businesses."
John Martin, Time Warner chief financial officer, is to lead the Council along with Lisa Garcia Quiroz, chief diversity officer and senior vice president, corporate responsibility.
Christine Haughney, New York Times: Spinoff of Time Inc. Rattles Employees
"Roughly three-in-ten (31%) whites own a gun, which is much greater than the rates of gun ownership among blacks (15%) and Hispanics (11%)," the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press reported Tuesday.
"The general profile of gun owners in America differs substantially from the general public. Roughly three-quarters (74%) of gun owners are men, and 82% are white. Taken together, 61% of adults who own guns are white men. Nationwide, white men make up only 32% of the U.S. adult population.
"Gun owners and those who do not own guns differ politically. While 37% of all adults identify with or lean toward the Republican Party, that proportion jumps to 51% among gun owners. Among those in households without guns, just 27% identify with the Republican Party or lean Republican, while a majority (61%) are Democrats or lean Democratic."
Phillip Morris, Plain Dealer, Cleveland: New gun revenue will be no different than cigarette revenue once the states begin collecting
Rod Watson, Buffalo News: Albany's take on violence is inconsistent
"Reacting with unusual swiftness, the Vatican on Friday rejected any suggestion that Pope Francis of Argentina was implicated in his country's so-called Dirty War during the 1970s, tackling the issue just two days after the pontiff’s election," Daniel J. Wakin reported Friday for the New York Times.
"On a day when Francis delivered a warm address to his cardinals and continued to project humility, the Vatican seemed intent on quickly putting to rest questions about the pope's past, dismissing them as opportunistic defamations from anticlerical leftists. The swift response contrasted with past public relations challenges during the papacy of Pope Benedict XVI, when the Vatican often allowed criticisms to linger without rebuttal. . . ."
Stephen Rex Brown, Daily News, New York: Native Americans to new Pope: Recant the 'Discovery Doctrine,' which gave Catholics dominion over New World
Nsenga Burton, the Root: Is Pope Bergoglio Really the 1st Latino Pope?
Mary C. Curtis, Washington Post: Authentically black and Catholic — with something to say about Pope Francis
Juan Gonzalez, Daily News, New York: Pope Francis' disputed role in Argentina's Dirty War raises questions
Bryan Llenas, Fox News Latino: Latino Romans, Immigrants Have New Hope in Pope
Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: Questions from a 'Dirty War'
Steve Russell, Indian Country Today Media Network: Habemus Papam: Why We Should Care About the Selection of the New Pope
Mary Sanchez, Kansas City Star: A Pope for the poor
"The newspaper-industry crisis has hit journalists of color hard — a fact evident in the recent controversy over Philadelphia magazine's 'Being White in Philly' cover story, Daniel Denvir wrote Thursday for Philadelphia City Paper. "Most local-media responses were from white people like myself, because the makeup of most news outlets in this city is overwhelmingly white.
"(City Paper’s full-time editorial staff, like Philadelphia magazine's, is 100 percent white.) Just short of a thousand black reporters nationwide lost or left their jobs between 2002 and 2012, bringing their newsroom representation to just 4.65 percent, according to the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ). Management tends to blame union seniority rules, while unions tend to fault management for failing to make diversity a priority. The proliferation of unpaid internships as de facto entry-level jobs puts poor people of any race at further disadvantage.
"The Inquirer, with a newsroom of about 250 compared to just 90 at the Daily News, is the city's largest news-gathering operation — and also a profoundly white one. Last fall, the Temple University journalism department briefly stopped recommending interns to the paper to protest the lack of diversity.
"Annette John-Hall was the Inquirer's only African-American metro columnist until she took a buyout last month, leaving Karen Heller (who is white) as the paper's only metro columnist in a city where black people are a plurality. 'What you get is unbalanced coverage,' says [John-Hall], describing a paper that has shifted away from community-level beats and too often reduces neighborhoods to crime stories. The Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists (PABJ) asked Inquirer editor Bill Marimow that the next metro columnist be black. According to PABJ president and Philadelphia Tribune news editor Johann Calhoun, Marimow, who did not respond to a request for comment, said he would try. . . ."
Wayne Bennett, the Field Negro: Being clueless in Philly.
"It doesn’t get much cooler than having Prince compose the theme song for your show," Scott Stump reported Thursday for NBC's "Today" show. "MSNBC's 'NewsNation with Tamron Hall’ has a new song created just for the show from the Purple One, who happens to be a big fan of Hall’s work on television when he's not cooking up new guitar licks. . . ." [Video]
Robert Chrisman, a founding editor of the Black Scholar, a quarterly journal "launched in 1969 with the premise that black authors, scholars, artists and activists could participate in dialogue within its pages, 'uniting the academy and the street.' Died March 10 at his home in San Francisco of complications from congestive heart failure. He was 75." His daughter, Laura Chrisman, told Journal-isms the journal now had a circulation of 700. Obituary at the end of this posting.
Patrice Gaines, a former Washington Post reporter whose "Laughing in the Dark: From colored girl to woman of color, a journey from prison to power" was published in 1995, said Friday on NPR's "Tell Me More," "two years ago I was dismissed from a job with the Census Bureau because of my criminal record. My criminal record was when I was 21 years old." She added, "I was eventually called back, but at that time the harm had been done. . . . "
"Three months into its experiment as an all-digital publication, Newsweek Global is losing its editor, Tunku Varadarajan, Adweek reported on Friday. "Varadarajan had been the editor of Newsweek International, a post he inherited from Fareed Zakaria, who left after The Washington Post Co. sold the magazine to stereo magnate Sidney Harman." In 2010, the Daily Beast ran a list by Varadarajan of "The Left's Top 25 Journalists" and a similar one for the right. There were no black journalists among them, and Pulitzer Prize-winning African American commentators expressed their views about that in this space.
Phillip Martin of Boston public radio station WGBH, "in collaboration with the International Center for Journalists (ICFJ), the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, and the Ford Foundation, traveled in the U.S. and across Asia to explore the modern slave trade of human trafficking," the station said. Martin's travels for the eight-part radio series took him to Wellesley, Mass.; New York; Thailand; Cambodia and Vietnam.
NPR chose a bar at the South by Southwest Interactive conference in Austin, Texas, to kick off Generation Listen, a campaign to make public radio cool in the minds and ears of young people, Brian Stelter reported Tuesday for the New York Times. "The party was, like every party here, packed. But the goal was to convince 20-something listeners that NPR is something that they can belong to — and may be even worth their donations." When NPR CEO Gary E. Knell was named in 2011, he told Journal-isms he wanted to make NPR more attractive to audiences of color as well as look at age diversity.
The Native American Journalists Association denounced the cover of AnOther Magazine, featuring actress Michelle Williams wearing what was intended to be Indian garb. "Any time a non-Native person is styled to appear Native American, it perpetuates a stereotype that all Native people look like this, that Native people do not exist or even evokes comparisons of this group to that of mythical beings . . . ," the association said Thursday.
Robert Chrisman, a founding editor of The Black Scholar, poet, academic and activist, died on March 10th, at his home in San Francisco, of complications from congestive heart failure. He was 75. He is survived by his brother, Philip Chrisman, and his daughter, Laura Chrisman.
Robert Chrisman was raised in Nogales, Arizona. His family moved to the Bay Area in the 1950s where he became involved in the lively and diverse cultural scene in San Francisco. He entered UC Berkeley’s English department to study literature. On his own he discovered the works of Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. Du Bois, Langston Hughes, Richard Wright, Robert Hayden, James Baldwin, Lorraine Hansberry, Vladimir Lenin, Karl Marx, Che Guevara, Pablo Neruda, Mao Tse-tung, and the Beat Generation writers.
Chrisman turned to poetry as medium of expression for his vision. His work gained recognition from critics and other poets, including Alice Walker who wrote of his poetry: "Revealed in this beautifully lyrical poetry is a mind's intense desire to comprehend the limits of, and to break through the snares of essentially Euro-Tectonic orientation into the larger world of struggling humanity." Chrisman published three volumes of poetry, Children of Empire (1981), Minor Casualties: New and Selected Poems (1993) and The Dirty Wars (2012).
Chrisman’s other books include three major edited anthologies of writings from The Black Scholar. These are: Contemporary Black Thought (1972), Pan-Africanism (1973), and Court of Appeal: The Black Community Speaks out on the Racial and Sexual Politics of Clarence Thomas v. Anita Hill (1993). In 2001 Chrisman co-edited with Laurence Goldstein the anthology, Robert Hayden: Essays on the Poetry.
In November 1969, Robert Chrisman co-founded The Black Scholar with Nathan Hare and Allan Ross. The launching of TBS followed in the wake of the historic strike at San Francisco State College. The strike involved thousands of students and faculty, including Chrisman, in a prolonged and sometimes violently repressive struggle with the administration and the state. Among the student demands were the creation of a Black Studies Department and a Third World College. These demands were won but Chrisman was forced to pay a high price for the victory. He and Nathan Hare were fired from their teaching positions in retribution for their activism in the strike. Chrisman was reinstated but not in a tenure-track position. Refusing to be silenced or driven from Black Studies, they instead decided to found a journal devoted to black studies and research, a journal that would be interdisciplinary in approach and that would seek to unite street activists and academic intellectuals in common advocacy for the needs of the black community. More than 200 issues later that journal is still publishing and has become the leading independent journal of African American scholarship and intellectual inquiry in the US. Following Chrisman's retirement as Editor-in-Chief, in 2012, his daughter Laura Chrisman became Editor-in-Chief, with Louis Chude-Sokei and Sundiata Cha-Jua as Senior Editors.
Robert Allen, long-term Senior Editor of TBS and close friend of Chrisman, writes “I know of no one who has worked harder than Robert Chrisman to actualize an intellectual vision. In building TBS he demonstrated the power of the principles of self-determination and self-reliance. He built the journal not by relying on grants and funding from foundations and government agencies, but by relying on the people we serve – teachers, students, community activists, labor activists, writers and artists, librarians, academicians, and just plain working people – our subscribers. These folks have shown that they have the power to sustain an intellectual enterprise and keep it independent. Chrisman believed that by relying on community support TBS could be self determining. For over forty years Robert Chrisman’s strategic vision enabled TBS to make a path where there was none before.”
Aside from his writing and editing, Chrisman was long engaged with the academy. He held an MA degree in Language Arts from San Francisco State, and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Michigan. He taught at the University of Michigan, Williams College, UC Berkeley, the University of Vermont, and Wayne State University. In 2005 he retired as Professor and Chair of the Black Studies Department at the University of Nebraska, Omaha. Among the initiatives he developed while at the University of Nebraska was the creation of an annual Malcolm X Festival in Omaha, the city where Malcolm X was born. In 2004 Chrisman and The Black Scholar were awarded the Pan-African Contribution for Publishing Award by the Organization of Women Writers of Africa and the Institute of African American Affairs at New York University. Chrisman’s other books include three major edited anthologies of writings from The Black Scholar. These are: Contemporary Black Thought (1974), Pan-Africanism (1972), and Court of Appeal: The Black Community Speaks out on the Racial and Sexual Politics of Clarence Thomas v. Anita Hill (1992). In 2001 Chrisman co-edited with Laurence Goldstein the anthology, Robert Hayden: Essays on the Poetry.
Facebook users: "Like" "Richard Prince's Journal-isms" on Facebook.
Journal-isms is published on the site of the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education (mije.org). Reprinted on The Root by permission.
Edward Lewis dismissed the recently fired editor-in-chief's complaints about the parent company.
Edward Lewis, one of the principal founders of Essence magazine, told Journal-isms Monday that he "absolutely" would again sell the publication to Time Inc. regardless of the complaints of fired editor-in-chief Constance C.R. White and readers who support her.
"It's very difficult for any size magazine to be standing out here alone without some other support elsewhere," Lewis said by telephone, adding that the magazine business has faced the additional challenges of changing technology and a punishing recession since he sold Essence to Time Inc. in 2005.
However, another founder, Jonathan Blount, wrote in a message posted on the website Naturally Moi that he stands with White and that Essence had strayed from his vision.
White disclosed in this column Friday that her departure as editor-in-chief of Essence magazine, made public Feb. 8, was involuntary and the result of repeated clashes with Martha Nelson, the editor-in-chief of Time Inc. who White says sought to limit the way black women were portrayed.
"I went in there with passion and excitement and high expectations," White told Journal-isms, referring to her 2011 hiring. "It wasn't what I expected at all."
However, Lewis, 72, senior adviser at Solera Capital, a private equity and venture capital firm, backed Time Inc. "To change the voice, I don't think would make any sense. They don't have a clue about African Americans. That's where we came in, and where we have come in for 43 years," the length of time Essence has published.
The proof that Time and Michelle Ebanks, president of Essence Communications Inc., are getting it right, Lewis said, is in the magazine's million-plus circulation and in the success of the Essence Festival, now in its 19th year.
White said she had had repeated clashes with Nelson, who is white, but Lewis said Marcia Ann Gillespie, the editor-in-chief from 1971 to 1980 who assisted in the search for editor-in-chief when White was named, "was a major consultant" for Nelson and White during her tenure. The announcement of White's appointment also named Gillespie as special projects director.
White's story generated sympathetic comments on African American-oriented websites over the weekend, with many saying she had confirmed their fears about what has happened to the magazine under white ownership. Some urged White to start her own publication. The sentiments about selling out to white corporate ownership were similarly voiced when Black Entertainment Television was sold to Viacom in 2000.
The phenomenon is not limited to media enterprises. In a cover story about the natural hair-care business in the current (January/February) issue of Black Enterprise, Tamara E. Holmes says of the makers of black hair-care products, "the black firms did not have the resources to compete with the monoliths and were eventually acquired by these firms and turned into divisions of the majority corporations. Today, most hair products for black consumers are no longer produced by black-owned companies . . . "
Among the top-selling publications targeting African Americans, only Johnson Publications' Ebony and Jet magazines and Black Enterprise, founded by Earl Graves Sr., remain black-owned. In 2009, Johnson Publishing announced that JPMorgan Chase's Special Investments Group would become an investor and part owner of the company, the first time in the company's then-69-year history that it would not be fully family-owned. However, CEO Desiree Rodgers told Journal-isms at the time that it was "very important that the company remain minority-owned."
Lewis also denied that longtime editor Susan L. Taylor had been pushed out, as White said, maintaining that Taylor and he were given severance contracts for the following three years. He added that Gordon Parks Sr., the famed photographer and early Essence editorial director, was not part of the magazine's DNA, as White asserted. "Gordon Parks really had nothing to do with it," Lewis said. Parks at one time unsuccessfully claimed control of the magazine.
Asked whether he had any advice for White, Lewis said, "She's got a wonderful resume and accomplishments. I hope she would continue to stay in the magazine business, and I wish her the best."
White did not respond to a request for comment.
"ESSENCE has not yet begun to be the leading International voice, conduit and amalgamation force of, for and about Black Women globally.
"I firmly believe that 'wherever Black America is going, Black Women are going to lead us.' I never wanted to be acquired by TIME Inc, I wanted to BE TIME Inc. I fought to the last minute to maintain Black majority control. It is still possible if Black women leaders, organizations and institutions will unite behind Susan Taylor and Constance White to buy back our freedom. Constance is to be applauded for her courageous stand. It is not the first but it should be and can be the last. There is much more to the story."
Eric Deggans, Daily Download: 21st Century Black Media: Must They Be Owned By Black People?
Doug Halonen, TVNewsCheck: Armstrong Looks To Build On WEYI-WWMB
Michael Learmonth, Ad Age: How Time Inc. Should Reinvent Itself as an Independent Publisher
Pepper Miller, Ad Age: Except for the Obamas, Where Are Black Couples in the Media?: Showing Love Is a Great Way to Reach the Black Community (Feb. 28)
Black Enterprise magazine is cutting its print editions from 12 to 10 issues a year as it shifts to an emphasis to its online editions, Alfred A. Edmond Jr., senior vice president/multimedia editor-at-large, told Journal-isms on Monday.
"All things being equal, we intend to deliver content across 10 print issues roughly equivalent to what we've delivered in 12 issues each year. The savings on printing and mailing two fewer issues each year is being shifted to our other media platforms, particularly digital, which has taken over from the print platform as a source of breaking news and delivers the responsiveness and interactivity our audience expects," Edmond said by email. "Those expectations can hardly be met by printed newspapers, much less by monthly or even weekly magazines."
Edmond was paraphrasing a letter to subscribers from Earl G. Graves Jr., president and CEO, in the January/February edition. Explaining why that issue is still on the newsstands, Edmond said, "One of the unavoidable consequences of preparing for and implementing these changes over the past year has been ongoing changes and disruptions of our production schedule, which has caused late production and delivery of our issues to newsstands and many subscribers for the past year."
Edmond went on, continuing the paraphrase, "Much of the content formerly delivered by our print platform is better suited for delivery via digital means, including our website, mobile and social media efforts; we will continue to shift resources accordingly.
"We are refocusing our magazine (including format and design changes introduced in the Jan/Feb 2013 issue) on content best suited to print periodicals, including more evergreen advice, exclusive lists and profiles, and less news-driven articles and resources, while creating stronger connections between the print product and our ongoing conversation with our audience on other platforms, especially social media and live events."
Graves told readers, "as a print magazine subscriber you are now entitled to an additional digital subscription to the all-new Black Enterprise iPad app at no extra charge, through our new All Access subscription program . . . In short, the subscription investment that once gave you access to just one platform now provides entree to all that we have to offer. . . . "
Black Enterprise had a circulation of 518,602 in June 2012, according to the Alliance for Audited Media, formerly the Audit Bureau of Circulations.
"Kwame Kilpatrick and contractor Bobby Ferguson headed straight to prison Monday, just hours after a federal jury found them guilty of running a criminal enterprise out of the Detroit mayor’s office," Robert Snell and Jim Lynch reported Monday for the Detroit News.
"Kilpatrick was found guilty of 24 counts of racketeering, extortion, conspiracy and bribery. Ferguson, a city contractor and his longtime friend, was found guilty of nine counts. Both men face up to 20 years or more in prison."
The Detroit newspapers could claim their share of credit.
A timeline published by the Detroit Free Press began with a Free Press report from Aug. 29, 2001, reporting that then-state Rep. Kilpatrick solicited a $50,000 contribution in 2000 from Jon Rutherford, president of a homeless shelter, to the nonprofit Kilpatrick Civic Fund.
There was Jan. 23-24, 2008: "Free Press publishes text messages showing that Kwame Kilpatrick and chief of staff Christine Beatty lied under oath in a police whistle-blower trial the previous fall."
When Kilpatrick resigned that year, Caesar Andrews, then executive editor of the Free Press, told Journal-isms, "It's one of those magic moments that really justifies so much of what we try to do. This shows what aggressive investigative reporting can yield when done the right way. It shows what can happen when you have highly skilled investigative reporters cut loose to do what they can do."
But, Andrews added, "Make no mistake about it. It is a sad day, at least from my perspective, when a person as deeply talented (as Kilpatrick) is forced to resign," even though he was "very proud" of the quality of work his staff performed.
On Monday, Walter Middlebrook, assistant managing editor -- Metro at the Detroit News, told Journal-isms by email, "We've got the best blog going on the trial... and anyone who has read federal courts reporter Rob Snell's daily reports will tell you he has had the liveliest coverage of the trial in his daily blog. Look for yourself.
"We've had reporters double teaming and tag-teaming the trial from Day One with one reporter in the courtroom and Snell reporting from the media room.
"We've been planning for a while for this day.
"We literally form two reporting teams on stories like this -- a breaking news team that then turns the story over to our print team. OK, we don't have that many people to have two teams but we have to think like we're two teams.
"First mission -- get it online and put together an attractive package of stories. We had several stories/ideas ready to go for the verdict and we got them up as soon as we knew where things stood. It was a strong package of stories that got stronger as the day went one
"Second mission -- working with the design desks and getting all of our stories into print.
"It was one of our better team efforts."
Stephen Henderson, editorial page editor of the Free Press, wrote, "It's tragic that the former mayor, who had such promise and potential, will see this city's future from a prison cell. But it's clear that the palpable energy and the focus around Detroit's rebirth is not hampered by his downfall.
"Let's be clear: The city still suffers horrific problems, and much of city government has fallen to a new low on the effectiveness scale. The looming state intervention to better manage the city's finances is eclipsed in importance only by the spectacular difficulties that Detroiters face every day with lighting, police response and other basic services.
"But just as Kilpatrick cannot be blamed for all of the trouble Detroit government now faces, he also hasn't stopped Detroiters from committing to something better. Even before city government comes around and functions for the benefit of the people who live here, the private and nonprofit sectors, as well as rank-and-file Detroiters themselves, have decided that things must move forward.
"Detroit is ready for a reset. . . . "
Michael Cottman, Black America Web: 'First Junior Jesse, Now Kwame. I Hope Ray Nagin is the Last,’ said Tom Joyner, Host of 'The Tom Joyner Morning Show'
"An Obama administration official credited with improving White House access for the burgeoning Hispanic news media is leaving his post," Lesley Clark reported Friday for McClatchy Newspapers.
"Luis Miranda, 36, who grew up in South Florida and staffed then-presidential candidate Al Gore's Miami-Dade campaign office, is stepping down to return to the private sector as a communications consultant. The White House's director of Hispanic media, Miranda is credited -- within the White House and the Hispanic media -- with helping to provide access not seen in previous administrations. The outreach came as the White House was courting the growing Hispanic vote, which helped President Barack Obama win re-election last fall.
" 'The Hispanic media too often has been treated as a distant second string,' said Cecilia Munoz, Obama's chief domestic policy adviser. 'Luis really has shepherded a new era of access.'
"That includes the first bilingual White House daily news briefing, as well as invitations to Hispanic TV anchors to the traditional off-the-record luncheons that Obama holds before big speeches, including his State of the Union address.
"Miranda said he’d viewed his position as an advocate for the administration, 'but also an advocate internally, finding opportunities to integrate Hispanic media into everything we do.' . . ."
"The Obama administration answered more requests from the public to see government records under the Freedom of Information Act last year, but more often than it ever has it cited legal exceptions to censor or withhold the material, according to a new analysis by The Associated Press. It frequently cited the need to protect national security and internal deliberations," Jack Gillum and Ted Bridis reported Monday for the Associated Press.
"The AP's analysis showed the government released all or portions of the information that citizens, journalists, businesses and others sought at about the same rate as the previous three years. It turned over all or parts of the records in about 65 percent of all requests. It fully rejected more than one-third of requests, a slight increase over 2011, including cases when it couldn't find records, a person refused to pay for copies or the request was determined to be improper."
The story also said, "The AP’s analysis also found that the government generally took longer to answer requests. Some agencies, such as the Health and Human Services Department, took less time than the previous year to turn over files. But at the State Department, for example, even urgent requests submitted under a fast-track system covering breaking news or events when a person's life was at stake took an average two years to wait for files. . . ."
Amy Argetsinger, Washington Post: President Obama at elite Gridiron Club jokes about sequester, Biden, Rubio
Chris Cillizza, Washington Post: Read President Obama's remarks at the Gridiron Dinner
Earl Ofari Hutchinson, syndicated: Top Democrats [Blew It Badly] on Filibuster
Tom Joyner, Black America Web: Playing the Race Card -- In Reverse
Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Sen. Rand Paul due praise for anti-drone stance
Pew Research Center: After Fight Over CIA Director Ends, A Look at Public Opinion on Drones
Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: Rand Paul makes the right call with filibuster
Bob Ray Sanders, Star-Telegram, Fort Worth, Texas: Targeted killings have led to deadly practices in the past
Margaret Sullivan, New York Times: The Danger of Suppressing the Leaks
Sam Stein and Amanda Terkel, Huffington Post: The Sequester Cuts' Impact Goes Deeper Than White House Tours (VIDEO)
Christie Thompson, ProPublica: A Reading Guide on Obama's Latest Appointments
"NABJ is celebrating the reported announcement that ABC News is planning to hire Byron Pitts from CBS," Gregory H. Lee Jr., president of the National Association of Black Journalists, wrote on the NABJ website. "We celebrate one of our brightest talents not only in our association, but also in the industry. However, looking deeper into the issue, there are a number of questions that can be asked in the aftermath, including:
"1. Does CBS News have any successors of color lined up to replace Pitts, whose duties included contributions to '60 Minutes?'
"2. Are there any black journalists in the pipeline at CBS to be promoted? Although critics will ask: 'Why does Pitts have to be replaced by a black journalist?' others will argue Pitts replaced the irreplaceable Ed Bradley.
"But why do these questions need to be asked? Shouldn't the question be: 'Why does CBS have only "one" position slotted for a black journalist at '60 Minutes?' Where is the professional development at CBS to properly prepare and position black journalists in these roles and create more opportunities?
"These questions are not posed only to CBS; they are posed to an industry that is accustomed to trading its select few black journalists around like they are baseball cards. It does not happen only in the broadcast industry. It happens also in print journalism. . . .
"There is no real leadership in our industry to fix our diversity shortage, though our nation's demographics are changing at a rapid pace. Sure, there are programs such as the Sports Journalism Institute and the Chips Quinn Scholars programs that help feed the pipeline, but there are leaks in those pipes as people fall out of the industry because of a lack of development opportunities. . . . "
Ronald E. Childs, a Chicago public relations man who has worked as a journalist and speechwriter, has been named executive editor of the Chicago Defender, Target Market News reported last week.
Detroit-based Real Times Media, which also owns the Michigan Chronicle, the New Pittsburgh Courier, the Memphis Tri-State Defender and the Michigan Front Page, all black weekies, fired Executive Editor Lou Ransom in 2011 amid financial problems.
Rhonda Gillespie, who had been laid off as news editor with Ransom, returned as managing editor late last year, Michael House, the Defender president, told Journal-isms in December. House said then he was looking to hire an executive editor and that four people remained on the editorial staff. The once-daily newspaper became a weekly publication in 2008.
Childs, 53, was founder and principal of OMEN Communications, a media relations firm, and spent 10 years at Flowers Communications Group, where he was vice president of media relations. From 1988 to 1991, he worked as a publicist for Johnson Publishing Co., and from 1990 to 1994 worked at Johnson's now-defunct EM -- Ebony Man magazine, where he was associate editor.
Last month, Margaret Sullivan, public editor of the New York Times, said of the redesigned "T: The Times Style Magazine": "There was much to admire. But many readers found one aspect of the magazine disturbing -- its lack of people of color. Indeed, there could be no argument; it was overwhelmingly white."
At a glance, the 138 pages of the latest edition, "Spring Men's Fashion" seemed just as white, but this time with 20-something, European-looking men.
"We just don't see what you see," Eileen Murphy, New York Times spokeswoman, told Journal-isms by email. "Notably, several of the poets we feature are people of color and there are other images throughout. And, we remain committed to a publication rich in diversity of all kinds."
A closer look, turning page by page, did indeed find some people of color, including the three in a "Young Poets" feature who actually dominated their pages. A spread on Belgian actor Matthias Schoenaerts, at first shown lying shirtless in bed, then, later, holding up the late Gil Scott-Heron's first album, "A New Black Poet: Small Talk at 12th and Lenox." An ad from designer John Varvatos features the young African American guitarist Gary Clark Jr. with Led Zeppelin founder Jimmy Page.
But then there are all those other pages. Tokenism? Diversity? This edition of "T: The Times Style Magazine" might fuel a discussion of which is which.
"Organizers hope Philadelphians of all races will turn out next week for an event at Love Park called 'Being in Philly,' " Jenice Armstrong, columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News, wrote Monday on her philly.com blog.
"The gathering, scheduled for 4 p.m. on March 20, is in response to a controversial Philadelphia magazine cover story called 'Being White In Philly.' In the piece, based on anonymous interviews, Robert Huber makes the claim that white people are afraid to talk about race for fear of being called racist.
"The article has a lot of problems, many of them well documented already. But the first-day-of-spring event isn't so much to address the issue of bad journalism but to present another view of what's happening in Philly. . . ."
James Causey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Can a white person really talk about race?
Eugene Kane, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: A flawed account of race issues
"One Book, One Chicago," launched in fall 2001 "as an opportunity to engage and enlighten our residents and to foster a sense of community through reading," has chosen "The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration" by Isabel Wilkerson as its selection for April 2013 through March 2014. The book "follows the lives of two men and a woman who represent the 6 million black Americans who moved north in the decades between World War I and the 1970s, many of whom settled on Chicago's South Side," Matt Walberg reported Monday for the Chicago Tribune.
"Former Denver television reporter Raj Chohan will speak in front of a jury instead of a camera when he begins his new job as a prosecutor in the Weld District Attorney’s Office on March 18," T.M. Fasano reported Friday for the Greeley (Colo.) Tribune. Chohan worked as a reporter for Denver’s KCNC-TV before practicing commercial litigation and media law for BakerHostetler in Denver.
"A Mississippi television anchorman can keep documents and other materials tied to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., that the civil rights leader's estate sued to obtain, a federal appeals court panel ruled Friday," the Associated Press reported. "King's estate sued WLBT-TV's Howard Ballou in September 2011 in U.S. District Court in Jackson. The estate wanted possession of documents, photographs and other items that Ballou's mother got while working for King."
Ernesto Romero has been promoted to news director at KYMA-TV in Yuma, Ariz., Kevin Olivas reported for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists. "He succeeds NAHJ member Luis Cruz, who is heading to Southern California to teach the next generation of broadcast journalists."
"The Associated Press Media Editors Foundation will offer diversity scholarships to APME NewsTrain events in 2013 for print and broadcast journalists and students who are pursuing careers in journalism," the foundation announced Thursday. "The scholarships will cover the cost of NewsTrain along with the recipient's accommodations and travel expenses. . . . The first NewsTrain will be held April 29-30 in Springfield, Ill." The application deadline is March 25.
Merlene Davis, columnist for the Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader, is "very pleased" that "Starting next year, when the annual American Community Survey is distributed to 3.5 million homes in the U.S., the agency is giving black folk only two choices: black or African American." After reviewing various racial designations applied to the group over the years, Davis concluded, "Our response to those self designations is how people know we care."
"Later this month, the voice of Cleveland native Clark Kellogg will become one of the most closely listened to in the nation," Phillip Morris wrote Saturday for the Plain Dealer in Cleveland. "As lead college basketball analyst for CBS Sports, Kellogg will narrate the annual rite of spring known as March Madness." Praising Kellogg's values off the court, Morris continued, "I think he should humor us all by at least studying the political migration of former Cavalier Point Guard Kevin Johnson, who returned to his hometown of Sacramento, Calif., after his NBA playing days were over. Johnson's title since 2008? Mayor."
In the News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C., Barry Saunders wrote Monday, "if the Al Jazeera television network really is the preferred network of terrorists everywhere, as some fear, that is all the more reason that we in the U.S. and the Triangle should have access to it, too." Saunders added, "we should be able to see what's on the so-called enemy's preferred viewing channel for the same reason men read 'Cosmo' magazine: to know what the other side is plotting."
Facebook users: "Like" "Richard Prince's Journal-isms" on Facebook.
Journal-isms is published on the site of the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education (mije.org). Reprinted on The Root by permission.
Constance C.R. White says Time Inc. leaders are disregarding the needs of black women.
Constance C.R. White has disclosed that her departure as editor-in-chief of Essence magazine was involuntary and the result of repeated clashes with Martha Nelson, the editor-in-chief of Time Inc. who White says sought to limit the way black women were portrayed.
"I went in there with passion and excitement and high expectations," White told Journal-isms, referring to her 2011 hiring. "It wasn't what I expected at all.
"What needs to happen is the reader is getting lost and the reader has to be at the center. To make their world smaller is unacceptable," White said by telephone. "A lot of the readers have sensed" what is happening, she said.
Essence, the nation's leading magazine for black women, was originally black-owned but has not fared well under Time Inc. ownership, White maintained. Nelson vetoed such pieces as a look at African American art and culture, and "I was not able to make the creative hires that needed to be made," White said.
She elaborated by email, "When was the last time you saw Essence in the community advocating for or talking with Black women?
"No more T-shirts with a male employee's face on it being distributed at the [Essence] Festival."
Essence announced White's departure in a terse statement on Feb. 8. No explanation was given.
But White told Journal-isms that her exit came after "another tug of war with them" in January. "Them" was principally Nelson.
Nelson, a 20-year Time Inc. veteran, became editor-in-chief of Time Inc. in January, responsible for the editorial content of all 21 of Time Inc.'s U.S. magazines and its digital products, according to her bio. Before that, Nelson spent two years as editorial director, overseeing the 17 titles and editors in the company's Style & Entertainment Group and Lifestyle Group.
The final "tug of war" came in January, White said. Referring to Nelson, White recalled, "My boss said, 'you know what? It's time to go.' I was asked to leave my position. I asked, 'Was it something we can discuss, or has the decision been made?' She said, 'The decision has been made.'
"I had a certain point of view about black women being central to this magazine. The boss didn't agree with me, and the president didn't agree with me," she said, referring to Michelle Ebanks, president of Essence Communications Inc. "It became an untenable situation." She would not comment on whether she had a contract with the publication.
Ebanks issued this statement Friday night: "We truly wish Constance well. Essence exists to affirm and inspire Black women. We always have and we always will."
Essence magazine debuted in 1970, the product of a communications company founded in 1968 by a group of African Americans that included as principals Edward T. Lewis and Clarence O. Smith.
Time bought 49 percent of Essence Communications in 2000 and absorbed the rest in 2005.
Lewis said in 2000, "The reason Time Warner is interested in Essence is they are interested in the editorial view of the magazine. They are not there to change it."
Indeed, Essence still proclaims on its website, "ESSENCE is Where Black Women Come First for news, entertainment and motivation. ESSENCE occupies a special place in the hearts of millions of Black women — [it's] not just a magazine but her most trusted confidante, a brand that has revolutionized the magazine industry and has become a cultural institution in the African-American community."
However, White's comments indicate that white corporate ownership has changed the magazine after all.
"This is a magazine where the central DNA was laid down by Gordon Parks," she said, referring to the famed African American photographer who helped found Essence and was its editorial director from 1970 to 1973. White intimated that her efforts to maintain Parks' standards had been rebuffed.
"How is it that from 2000, when Susan [L. Taylor, longtime editor] left — she was pushed out — we have had about five editors, including two acting editors, yet Essence continues to decline? So where's the problem? And the editors are the black women. 'They are disposable. Let's keep changing them.'
"The point is, it didn't start with me," White said of the conflicts between top Essence editors and Time Inc. management. "If I can make a difference, I'd like to. If no one speaks up, it's possible it won't end with me."
She continued in an email, "Martha Nelson cannot shape the editorial [content] for the magazine, and it was a strange use of her time considering People, the cash cow of Time inc accounting for over $1 billion, was down 12-18 percent in the last two years and All You was down 38 percent." All You is described on its advertising website as "proudly" providing the value-minded woman "with practical, attainable, no-nonsense ideas for her everyday life."
The Publishers Information Bureau reported in January that the number of advertising pages in Essence dropped by 10.3 percent during 2012. Industrywide, ad pages were down by 8.2 percent. However, circulation rose from 1,051,000 in 2011 to 1,104,871 in 2012, according to the Alliance for Audited Media, previously the Audit Bureau of Circulations. For the industry overall, magazine circulation declined last year.
Influencing White's efforts to speak with Journal-isms, she said, was the decision by Time Warner this week to spin off Time Inc. magazines. As a result, Laura Lang, CEO of Time Inc. since 2011, said she would step down.
"I believe that Essence may have fared better under Laura Lang's regime because people became more accountable for their jobs rather than playing out their personal politics. But with her departure I just don't know what's going to become of Essence," White said.
The Jamaica-born White was style director, brand consultant and spokeswoman for eBay, the online company, when she was named to lead Essence. "White was previously the founding Fashion Editor for Talk magazine, a celebrated Style Reporter for The New York Times and the Executive Fashion Editor for Elle magazine," an announcement said when she was named. "She also served as Associate Editor at Women's Wear Daily and W magazine and began her career at Ms. magazine, as assistant to co-Founder Gloria Steinem."
"I still love magazines," White told Journal-isms. "I'm considering my next move. I'm happy to be able to see more of my kids," of whom there are three. "Later this month I will be speaking at Syracuse University on branding and the media and I will resume my appearances on NY Live!," referring to "New York Live," a daily lifestyle show on New York's WNBC-TV.
"I'd really like to see Essence move forward in a stronger way. I'm even more concerned about how Essence has fared being part of Time Inc. It hasn't fared particularly well. Hopefully, this upheaval will be for the better.
"There has to be a come-to-Jesus moment when people say, 'Here's what we're going to do and here are the right people to do it. We are a very valuable audience. In my farewell speech I asked my team to present to management what needs to happen at Essence to ensure its survival because they know.
"Essence needs stability and the brand needs a leader with a vision. Black women are social leaders, cultural leaders, we are aspirational and spiritual. Black women deserve the best. Essence is the last place where black women should be demeaned and diminished."
Associated Press: Meredith shares fall on Time Warner spin-off plans
Danielle Belton, the Black Snob: Fmr. Essence Editor Constance C.R. White Says She Clashed With Time Inc. Over Black Women
Amy Chozick, New York Times: In a Spinoff of Time Inc., Evolution Is Complete
Bill Cromwell, Media Life Magazine: Readers: Magazines aren’t that bad off
Daniel Gross, Daily Beast: Why Time Warner Felt It Had to Spin Off Magazine Unit Time Inc.
Keith J. Kelly, New York Post: 'Lighter mood' as a new day dawns at Time
Sam Mamudi, Barron's: Time Warner Rises After Spin-Off Decision; Meredith Falls 7%
Bill Mickey, Folio:: Time Inc. Spinoff Has a Bumpy Road Ahead
Isoul Harris, an alumnus of People magazine, the Huffington Post and Atlanta-based 944 Magazine, has been promoted from executive editor to editor-in-chief of Uptown magazine. The March issue is his first as top editor. Harris succeeds Angela Bronner Helm.
"I certainly want to build on what the brand has become over last 9 years," Harris, 39, told Journal-isms by email, "a publication presenting African-American life in the most beautiful, professional and creative way possible.
"The current March cover with comedian and actor Kevin Hart leaping mid-air sporting a Dolce & Gabbana tuxedo jacket exhibits the new direction in which I would like to take the magazine: stylish, fun, and energetic. That coupled with more substantive pieces such as 'The New America,' a feature about post-Obama America, which was written by MSNBC host and civil rights leader Al Sharpton. I want UPTOWN to be a book of sophistication and substance."
Harris' first book, "Nicki Minaj: Hip Pop Moments 4 Life," is due from Omnibus Press on April 1. He says he has interviewed Jada Pinkett-Smith and Will Smith, Janet Jackson, Rihanna, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Drew Barrymore, LeAnn Rimes, Usher, Beyoncé, Outkast, Vince Vaughn and Queen Latifah.
Uptown, based in New York, has a circulation of 228,488, according to the Alliance for Audited Media, previously the Audit Bureau of Circulations.
Soledad O'Brien, who is giving up her CNN morning show, "Starting Point," in exchange for forming a production company and supplying documentaries to CNN on a nonexclusive basis, says she has obtained the rights to the "Black in America" and "Latino in America" franchises.
"We struck an unusual deal," O'Brien told Diane Brady of Business Week on Thursday. "I’ll get to leave CNN with my catalog and documentaries. We were able to create a brand at CNN — Black in America — that I now own. I can take that brand and extend it in any way I want. You have Netflix (NFLX) and all these channels that are looking for interesting and different ways to tell stories. To have ownership of Black in America and Latino in America is hugely important.
"I absolutely pushed for that — it was critical to me. I’m so affiliated with this brand that there wasn't a real struggle. I don't just own it, but I can now take it across other platforms.
"I’m not exclusive to CNN. If I decide I want to go and do a show somewhere, I can go and do it. I’ve never owned my own content. Most people in TV do not own their own production company. In fact, most of us don't even own our own Facebook (FB) pages, and some don't own their Twitter account. . . ."
"In a case of apparent plagiarism, Fox News pundit Juan Williams lifted — sometimes word for word — from a Center for American Progress report, without ever attributing the information, for a column he wrote last month for the Hill newspaper," Alex Seitz-Wald reported Thursday for Salon.
"Almost two weeks after publication, the column was quietly revised online, with many of the sections rewritten or put in quotation marks, and this time citing the CAP report. It also included an editor's note that read: 'This column was revised on March 2, 2013, to include previously-omitted attribution to the Center for American Progress.'
"But that editor’s note mentions only the attribution problem, and not the nearly identical wording that was also fixed.
"In a phone interview Thursday evening, Williams pinned the blame on a researcher who he described as a 'young man.' "
Erik Wemple wrote Friday for the Washington Post, "So what Williams is saying here is that he lifted his researcher's words. Why, then, wasn't the researcher credited in the piece?
Referring to Hugo Gurdon, editor in chief of the Hill, Wemple continued, "When asked about that matter, Gurdon replied, 'I’m not sure that researchers always do get credit.'
"They should. The only time they rear their heads should not be when they allegedly screw up."
Paul Waldman, American Prospect: How Many Big-Time Pundits Are Plagiarists?
"Latinos own smartphones, go online from a mobile device and use social networking sites at similar — and sometimes higher — rates than do other groups of Americans, according to a new analysis of three surveys by the Pew Research Center," Mark Hugo Lopez, Ana Gonzalez-Barrera and Eileen Patten reported Thursday for the Pew Hispanic Center.
"The analysis also finds that when it comes to using the internet, the digital divide between Latinos and whites is smaller than what it had been just a few years ago. Between 2009 and 2012, the share of Latino adults who say they go online at least occasionally increased 14 percentage points, rising from 64% to 78%. Among whites, internet use rates also increased, but only by half as much — from 80% in 2009 to 87% in 2012.
"Over the same period, the gap in cellphone ownership between Latinos and other groups either diminished or disappeared. In 2012, 86% of Latinos said they owned a cellphone, up from 76% in 2009. . . ."
The evidence is mounting that familiarity with social media is becoming mandatory for journalists.
Twitter "is building a powerful media company that is a threat to many of the biggest players in digital media," Brian Morrissey reported Wednesday for Digiday.
"Its ambitions to this point have been dogged by questions of scale. Remember all those stories about Twitter quitters? No more. Two hundred million monthly active users, the company reports, are double last year’s number. But still, how many people really tweet? The company now processes 1 billion tweets every two and a half days. During New Year's in Japan, that meant 33,000 tweets per second. Half of all Americans now see, read about or hear about tweets every day. These are facts that back up its execs' contention that Twitter is now a 'global town hall.'
"All that scale and activity gives Twitter something else: leverage. . . ."
Meanwhile, Lynne Varner, editorial writer and columnist at the Seattle Times, wrote Friday about the backlash against the Seattle Public Schools after it began investigating a class exploring white privilege.
Varner told Journal-isms by email, "I also created a Word Cloud adjacent to my column to get responses from people about how they view the treatment of minority students in Seattle. I opened it to responses from parents and non-parents, in Seattle and outside, because I want to better understand how the public education system overall treats minority students. As you know with Word Clouds, the more a word is chosen the larger it will be."
In applying for a $3.5 million job-creation grant last year from Miami-Dade County, Fusion, the new ABC-Univision English-language cable network targeted to Hispanics, "promised to create 346 new jobs over the next five years — 201 in 2013 — in addition to retaining 137 jobs in the county," Veronica Villafañe recalled Tuesday for TVNewsCheck. "The new jobs would have an average salary of $81,000.
"So far, there isn't much evidence of such hiring.
"A LinkedIn site currently shows only 10 job listings for Fusion, including a digital reporter, coordinating producer, assignment manager and director of communications and public affairs, but an ABC spokesperson says they’re 'working 24/7 to bring people on board.' . . . "
"Having won our independence in a nonviolent struggle, Indians join Americans in celebrating the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s leadership of the civil rights movement in the United States," Nirupama Rao, India's ambassador to Washington, wrote Friday for Politico. "On Aug. 28, we will commemorate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington where King delivered his 'I Have a Dream' speech, and, on April 4, we will mourn the 45th anniversary of his assassination.
"On March 10, we will mark another milestone moment in King's public ministry and personal journey. On that day, 54 years ago, he returned from a monthlong journey to India where he rededicated himself to the nonviolent struggle for justice to which the leader of our nation's independence movement, Mahatma Gandhi, gave his life.
Rao continued, "Through most of the past century, Indians and African-Americans supported each other's struggles because we identify with each other’s predicaments and principles. . . . " He elaborated on the Gandhi-African American connection.
Ta-Nehisi Coates, New York Times: The Good, Racist People
Khalid Salaam, the Shadow League: Social Illiteracy Is What's Plaguing America's Race Relations
Fatima Shaik, In These Times: Black and Bengali: A new book traces the hidden story of a mixed-race community.
"In the wake of Hugo Chávez's death Wednesday afternoon, British GQ re-published an interview in which British supermodel Naomi Campbell fawned over the 'rebel angel' Venezuelan autocrat," Andrew Kirell reported Friday for Mediaite.
"Within hours, however, the piece was mysteriously scrubbed from the site. Was this a protective PR demand from Campbell's people? After all, she's in the midst of promoting her new Oxygen reality show? . . ."
Editorial, Al Día, Philadelphia: In Latin America, U.S. Would Rather Talk About Villains than Partners
Katie Glueck, Politico: Jesse Jackson on Hugo Chavez: 'Democracies evolve'
Vanessa Rodriguez, Fox News Latino: After Hugo Chavez's Death, Venezuelan Expatriates Ponder a Return to Homeland
" 'In Plain Sight' is a special initiative by NBC News to report on poverty in America. Our work is supported by a grant from the Ford Foundation," NBC News says on its website. "In America's most dangerous and poorest city, Camden, N.J., bullet holes are visible in a church's stained glass window, crosses commemorating the murdered line the outside of city hall and the police staff is so outnumbered and outgunned, drug deals occur in the open. Rock Center's Brian Williams visits Camden and talks to those fighting to turn around the forgotten city." So began an introduction to a "Rock Center" segment this week. The series is also running on the "NBC Nightly News."
BET and Univision picked up Walter Cronkite awards from the Norman Lear Center at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, with both cited for serving their viewers "extremely well" with the kind of "solid coverage" the judges said all Americans deserve, John Eggerton reported Wednesday for Broadcasting & Cable. BET said its award recognized five BET News broadcasts, "Michelle Obama on a Mission: Impact Africa," about the first lady's journey to South Africa and Botswana, "President Obama Answers Black America," "The Curious Case of Citizen Cain," about former GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain, "Second Coming?: Will Black America Decide 2012?" and "Battleground 2012: Countdown With The First Couple." Univision was cited for its presidential forums. Watch the winning entries.
"The cover says it all: 'Simply The Best!' Which is why we can't believe this April 2013 issue of Vogue magazine marks Tina Turner's first time gracing the glossy. Finally!" Julee Wilson wrote Friday for the Huffington Post. Turner is 73, and the Vogue in question is the German edition.
The Associated Press added an entry in its Stylebook Thursday on mental illness: "Do not describe an individual as mentally ill unless it is clearly pertinent to a story and the diagnosis is properly sourced. When used, identify the source for the diagnosis. Seek firsthand knowledge; ask how the source knows. . . ."
As scheduled, CNN Worldwide President Jeff Zucker hosted a networking reception in New York Friday as part of the Region 2 conference of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists. He "Just reinforced commitment to diversity n working w NAHJ," NAHJ President Hugo Balta messaged Journal-isms. The appearance was scheduled before NAHJ and the National Association of Black Journalists complained that Zucker's first hires have included no journalists of color.
Justice B. Hill, a veteran sports reporter who writes for sports websites that include MLB.com and SBnation.com, is not optimistic about Richard E. Lapchick's suggestion that news organizations "adopt a Rooney Rule" to boost the numbers of African American sports journalists. "Rooney sounds great, except in its execution," Hill wrote Thursday for BET.com. "In reality, the rule has proved an embarrassment. Blacks went 0-for-15 in the latest round of Rooney interviews for head coaching and front office jobs. . . . "
"According to Sports Illustrated's Richard Deitsch, women carry zero clout in the sports media world," Chris O'Shea wrote Thursday for Fishbowl NY. "Deitsch published a list of the 'The 10 Most Powerful People in Sports Media' and there's not a single woman made the cut. There are even 10 additional honorable mentions, but still it's all dudes, all the time. . . ."
In Vermont, "The Caledonian Record newspaper of St. Johnsbury is being criticized by the Asian American Journalists Association for publishing a poster using a print type associated with Chinese calligraphy for the words 'Fry Rice' to urge a local school to beat its opponent — Rice Memorial High School — in a state championship basketball game," Wilson Ring reported Friday for the Associated Press. In an editorial Saturday (http://bit.ly/Yj75aB ), the newspaper said the back-page poster meant no offense to any individual or group. The editorial said it sought a play on words, and simply invoking ethnic customs does not constitute racism, AP reported.
"Radio One, Inc is flipping its Indy's Music Channel station – WDNI – to Spanish," Veronica Villafañe reported Wednesday for her Media Moves site. "Telemundo Indy will start broadcasting on channel 19 next Monday, March 11, making it the only Spanish-language broadcast station in the market. . . ."
"It took tax evasion to bring down Capone," Philip Bump reported Thursday for the Atlantic. Referring to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Bump continued, "A Native American group hopes that another arcane economic law — trademarks — can do the same to the Washington Redskins. Later today, the USPTO's Trademark Trial and Appeal Board will consider if the NFL team should lose its federal trademark because it violates Section 2(a) of the Trademark Act, which bars any mark that '[c]onsists of or comprises immoral, deceptive, or scandalous matter; or matter which may disparage or falsely suggest a connection with persons, living or dead, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols, or bring them into contempt, or disrepute . . . ' "
Crystal Wright, who runs the blog Conservative Black Chick and the PR firm Baker Wright Group, LLC, "has formed a new political action committee designed to help make the Republican Party more inclusive," Byron Tau and Anna Palmer reported Thursday for Politico's Politico Influence column. "The PAC will support women and candidates of color at the state and federal level, Wright told PI. Obama 'bothered to talk to minority groups and women,' Wright said. 'We haven't bothered. The Republican Party hasn't bothered to really talk to most ethnic groups in 20-plus years.' "
A "Celebration of Life" service for NPR journalist Brenda Box Johnson, who died Thursday after a long battle with pancreatic cancer, is scheduled from 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at Demaine Funeral Home, 5308 Backlick Road, Springfield, Va., her friend, Geri Coleman Tucker of USA Today, announced. The funeral home can be reached at 703-941-9428.
Viviana Hurtado, founder of the Wise Latinas Club, Laura Donnelly Gonzalez, COO and co-founder of the digital magazine Latinitas, and Alicia Rascon and Dream Activists finished in a three-way tie for New Americano awards presented at the Social Revolución, the official Latino event at the 2013 SXSW Interactive Festival in Austin, Texas. Dream Activists is an online network of social media activists who advocate the enactment of the DREAM Act by sharing the stories of individual DREAMers online.
Lynn Norment, a former editor at Ebony magazine active in the National Association of Black Journalists, has launched Chicago-based Lynn Norment Media "to offer services and expertise to individuals, agencies, corporations and government entities to advance and elevate reputations, brands, products and personal/business goals" as well as writing and editing services.
"Gunmen stormed the offices of a television station in the Libyan capital of Tripoli on Thursday amid a protest outside the station's studios, according to news reports," the Committee to Protect Journalists said Friday. "The gunmen abducted at least five journalists and media workers, the reports said, although all were released within 24 hours."
"At a meeting of the Beijing delegates during China's National People's Congress, a journalist asked a question about air pollution that lasted over 3-minute mark, and saw her almost break down in tears numerous times," Adam Taylor reported Thursday for Business Insider. "The delegates response? Nothing at all. . . ."
"Twenty-one people have been arrested for a wave of crimes that included 11 murders (six of which were committed against police officers), the abduction for hours of five employees of El Siglo de Torreón newspaper, the murder of a mayoral candidate, and attempted murder of a current mayor in a large metropolitan area in central Mexico, according a senior federal official," Mike O’Connor wrote Friday for the Committee to Protect Journalists. "The question is, will the arrests have any effect on the larger climate of fear among the area's press and public? . . ."
"It's the biggest news of the year in Kenya: A presidential election with huge potential for violence. Why then are the headlines so boring, the TV broadcasts so dull? the Associated Press asked Thursday. "The answer: Kenyan media are self-censoring the story to avoid fanning the flames of conflict. Kenya's Media Owners Association told The Associated Press that media leaders made a 'gentleman’s agreement' to balance the national interest and the public's right to know, including not reporting anything that could incite ethnic tensions and not airing political statements live. . . ." Kenya's election commission declared Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta the winner, but Prime Minister Raila Odinga said Saturday he would not concede and would challenge the results in court.
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Journal-isms is published on the site of the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education (mije.org). Reprinted on The Root by permission.
The former NBA star spoke of his unlikely friend, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
"Dennis Rodman's trip to North Korea wasn't an accident or an oddity, but the result of a gonzo media company facilitating a summit between a Basketball Hall of Famer and an oppressive dictator who grew up a Bulls fan. But making sense of it doesn't equip Rodman for the international politics he stumbled into," Matt Ufford wrote Monday for SB Nation.
"Vice has a reputation for stunt journalism," Brian Stelter wrote for the New York Times, referring to Vice Media, a Brooklyn, N.Y., media company that is producing "Vice," a newsmagazine that will have its premiere on HBO on April 5.
Rodman's trip made headlines and on Sunday landed him on ABC's political talk show "This Week" with George Stephanopoulos, earning the ex-NBA star known as "the Worm" his share of ridicule as out of his depth.
"This is what we know," Ufford continued in SB Nation:
"Kim Jong Un's father and predecessor Kim Jong Il was an ardent fan of the NBA who, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune, had regulation courts at most of his palaces and 'a video library of practically every game Michael Jordan ever played for the Bulls.'
"In 2000, attempting to warm U.S.-DPRK relations, Madeline Albright gave Kim Jong Il an NBA basketball signed by Jordan that is now on display in a Pyongyang museum. The dictator invited His Airness to North Korea the following year; Jordan declined.
"The basketball addiction was apparently passed on to Kim Jong Un. Kim attended a Swiss high school under an assumed identity, where he wore Air Jordans, displayed pictures of himself with Toni Kukoc and Kobe Bryant, played tenaciously on the court, and 'spent hours doing meticulous pencil drawings of Chicago Bulls superstar Michael Jordan.'
"Vice Media, which arranged the trip for a newsmagazine that will air on HBO, is no stranger to North Korea. Co-founder Shane Smith has visited the country twice before to make Vice documentaries, and information gathered then spurred the idea for a basketball exhibition starring Rodman and three Harlem Globetrotters. (Vice paid the players an undisclosed sum, according to the New York Times.) Though there was no promise of meeting Kim when the trip began, 'We knew he'd be tempted by basketball,' said a Vice spokesman.
"So it was that Dennis Rodman -- late of Celebrity Mole, Celebrity Apprentice, Celebrity Rehab, and Dr. Drew's Sober House -- became the first American to meet with Kim Jong Un, the master of a nuclear weapons platform that threatens the civilized world, since he assumed power after his father's death."
Rodman was said to know more about Kim now that the CIA does.
On "This Week," "Rodman was at turns incoherent and contradictory, with host George Stephanopoulos pushing him on why he would speak well of a man who presides over prison camps and stifles dissent," wrote Chris Cillizza, the Washington Post's "The Fix" political columnist. Cillizza posted a photo of Rodman and Stephanopoulos and conducted an online caption contest. The winning caption has Rodman saying, "Wait. You're saying there's two Koreas?”
Sports commentator Stephen A. Smith, appearing on MSNBC's "Hardball," evaluating Rodman's performance, said, "you realize how pathetic he can be."
CNN anchor Anderson Cooper interviewed Laura Ling, the journalist who was detained in North Korea with a colleague from Current TV in 2009. "I mean, Kim Jong-un is trying to portray himself as this more jovial leader, more in the vein of his grandfather, Kim Il-Sung," Ling said Monday on "Anderson Cooper 360°". "But we're sort of guilty of it when we shine a light on this whole Dennis Rodman visit, because that's the information that is disseminated, whereas we really should be focusing on the egregious human rights abuses that are taking place in that country.
She added, "But I do think that, you know, for people who don't know anything about North Korea, you know, here's a chance for us to talk about it, and to talk about the misinformation, and how ill-informed Dennis Rodman may have been and probably was at the true nature of what's going on inside that country."
Alex Weprin reported on TVNewser that "Rodman apparently had a number of other media appearances lined up. The key word there is had, because he seems to have been canceling them."
DJ Dunson, the Shadow League: Dennis Rodman Returns To Spotlight As North Korean Ambassador, Likely Dooms Us All
Mara Schiavocampo, NBC News: Rodman: Kim Jong Un is 'my friend'
David Steele, AOL FanHouse/Sporting News: Strangely irrelevant: Dennis Rodman goes to North Korea
Ishaan Tharoor, Time: 5 Things We Hope Dennis Rodman Learned About North Korea
"Philadelphia Magazine just published an article by Robert Huber titled 'Being white in Philly: In a city that is largely poor and segregated white people have become afraid to say anything at all about race. Here's what's not being said,' " Daniel Denvir wrote Saturday for the Philadelphia City Paper.
"No, it is not an Onion-esque parody of Philadelphia's most white-bread journalistic institution, a magazine that seemingly hired Gene Marks just because he wrote the jaw-droppingly offensive article 'If I Were a Poor Black Kid' for Forbes.
"But before I continue, I must first disable the story's booby trap, a defense built into its very DNA: the idea that 'in so many quarters, simply discussing race is seen as racist.'
"Huber is not a brave man, and his premise is totally false. People will only think . . . 'simply discussing race' is racist if you, like Huber, treat black people like inscrutable extraterrestrials whose moral shortcomings might be responsible for their own poverty.
"The reality is that many black people frequently talk about race and racism. And really, white people do too -- sometimes intelligently, sometimes not so much. To the extent that whites do not discuss race more it is because they do not want to address important pieces of context like, say, history (see Louis CK).
"Indeed, I'm a white guy who writes about race and frequently talk to black Philadelphians -- and often, gasp, about race. Black sources have never protested frank questions about race for articles I write about poverty and educational inequity, police brutality and mass incarceration, or neighborhood segregation and (yes, largely black) gun violence. . . ."
Wayne Bennett, Field Negro: "Being White in Philly"
Mike Bertha, Philadelphia Inquirer: Philly Mag wants white people to talk about race
Jason Fagone, Philadelphia Magazine: Philly Mag's "Being White in Philly" Doesn't Make Sense as Journalism
"In recent months, journalists covering crime and other stories here have themselves become victims of crime, robbed of expensive cameras, sometimes at gunpoint," Carol Pogash wrote Saturday from Oakland for the New York Times.
"In less than a year, every major television news station in the Bay Area has been a victim, some more than once. One experienced newspaper photographer has lost five cameras.
"In the most brazen episode, a group of men punched a KPIX-TV cameraman last November while he was filming at midday in front of an Oakland high school. The robbers fled with his camera while it was still recording. Viewers saw the reporter sign off and then an inexplicably wobbly image.
"Robberies and assaults are changing the way journalists report in Oakland. Armed, plainclothes security guards sometimes accompany news crews on pieces, even mundane ones. Some camera crew members are refusing to take assignments in Oakland at night. And while crime provides the daily drama for much of the local television news, reporters are spending less time on the street and more time at the Oakland police department. Once the police leave a crime scene, television crews depart as well. . . . "
"There is a telling paragraph in the U.S. District Court opinion last year that found Texas deliberately discriminated against minorities in redistricting," O. Ricardo Pimentel wrote Saturday for the San Antonio Express-News.
" 'In the last four decades, Texas has found itself in court every redistricting cycle, and each time it has lost.'
"Such serial stubbornness is a sign of many things, but not redemption. Texas is not reformed of its discriminatory past. It has merely rebranded -- in Coca-Cola Classic fashion. Funny, tastes just like the old discrimination.
"Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in a case whose outcome will have a profound effect on whether Texas and other states and political jurisdictions with histories of voter discrimination get away with this flim-flam.
". . . Texas, in urging the high court to eliminate Section 5, is essentially saying that it would prefer no one looking when it does anew what it has a sordid history of doing."
The Chicago Tribune differed. It said in an editorial Monday, "Like the rest of the nation, the South is far from immune to racial conflict and prejudice. But it has changed beyond recognition, and it's about time for the law to change as well."
Perry Bacon Jr., the Grio: Over Obama's objections, Supreme Court pushes view of 'post-racial' America
Emil Guillermo blog, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund: White robe, black robe: What was Justice Scalia saying to us about voting rights?
Latina Lista blog: The Voting Rights Act is a long way from being 'racial entitlement'
Julianne Malveaux, National Newspaper Publishers Association: Turning the Clock Back on Voting Rights
Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Voting Rights Act is far from out of date
Leonard Pitts Jr., Miami Herald: Voting Rights Act not a 'racial entitlement'
Mary Sanchez, Kansas City Star: Voting Rights Act still necessary
Michael Paul Williams, Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch: We still need a Voting Rights Act with teeth
Raju Narisetti, newly named senior vice president and deputy head of strategy for the New News Corporation, is currently head of editorial teams and content strategy for the Wall Street Journal Digital Network, and had a similar role as a managing editor at the Washington Post. He told Justin Ellis of Nieman Journalism Lab Monday that most news organizations have not caught up with the impact that mobile devices are having on journalism.
And Narisetti named some of his favorite emerging technologies: Android, Spreeecast, Google Glass, Tout and Storyful. He also praised Twitter, which he said "actually brought serendipity back into my life in a major way."
In a Q-and-A, Ellis asked, "You gave a talk recently and mentioned that a little over 30 percent of traffic to the Journal comes through mobile. That number doesn't seem that far from the rate at other media companies, but people were still surprised by the way mobile is growing. Do you think there's an understanding of how big an impact mobile is going to have on journalism?"
Narisetti replied, "I don't think we are there yet in most newsrooms. The reason I went public with that number was that I think people need to understand the profound changes that our audiences are going through. A year ago, I suspect if I went back and looked when I rejoined the Journal, I bet that number was in the low 20s, if that. A year from now that number, I guarantee that number is going to be in the high 40s.
"What has happened, I think, is that most newsrooms have created mobile teams to embrace apps and embrace Apple and, now, Android devices. But they've seen it as a small team building a product and then not worry about it. Others, like the Journal, who have been more self-aware, have responded in the last few months and last year by creating more responsive design where the content adjusts to the container. But my view is that with so much of your audience consuming your content and your journalism through anywhere between a 3- to 7-inch device, you have to start pivoting from creating just content to creating a great experience and creating different experiences on different devices. And it's hard.
"There's probably no newsroom in the world -- and I probably am not wrong in saying this -- there's probably no newsroom in the world where the mobile team is more than a single-digit team. Maybe occasionally somebody hits like 10 people. That is where I'm very worried -- we've gone from print-first for centuries, if you will, to (somewhat kicking and screaming) to web-first, and we're not entirely there yet.
"But what we really need to be is increasingly saying: What does it mean to be mobile-first? . . . "
In Indonesia, "A television reporter in East Kalimantan says she suffered a miscarriage after being beaten by a village chief and more than a dozen other men while covering a land dispute on Saturday," Tunggadewa Mattangkilang reported Monday for the Jakarta Globe.
"Normila Sari Wahyuni, 23, a reporter from Paser TV, which airs locally in the district of Paser, was interviewing one victim of a bitter land dispute in Rantau Panjang village when she was allegedly stopped by a number of men, including the village chief, Ilyas. She said the men tried to confiscate her camera before attacking her.
"Normila, who was on Sunday seeking treatment at Panglima Sebaya Hospital in the town of Tanah Grogot, said she was beaten, had her clothes ripped off and her camera taken from her."
The story continued, "Nurdin, chairman of the Paser chapter of the Association of Indonesian Journalists (PWI), condemned the attack, saying that the perpetrators must also be charged with violating the Law on the Press.
"The law stipulates that anyone trying to stop or threatening to stop journalists from doing their work could face up to two years in prison."
"March 15 is the deadline to apply for the 18th annual Minority Writers Seminar to be held May 2-5, 2013, at the Freedom Forum Diversity Institute at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee," the Association of Opinion Journalists announces. "The institute is a partner with the AOJ Foundation of the annual workshop.
"Enrollment is limited to 12, and minority journalists who have been writing opinion less than two years may apply. AOJ Foundation pays for lodging and food at the Seminar and reimburses up to $200 each for transportation to and from Nashville."
AOJ said the Minority Writers Seminar has enabled dozens of journalists of color to write opinion pieces and manage editorial pages.
"The Chicago Tribune has agreed to pay a total of $660,000 to 46 current and former TribLocal reporters to settle a class-action lawsuit over unpaid overtime wages," Robert Channick reported Friday for the Tribune. "The settlement offer was mailed this week to reporters who worked for TribLocal between February 2009 and September 2012. Those who don't opt out will receive an average of $9,000 each after attorneys fees and costs."
Ruben Rosario, columnist for the Pioneer Press in St. Paul, Minn., disclosed to readers Saturday that he had been molested as a child. "I decided last week -- more than half a century later -- to publicly bare what I should have told someone decades ago. I do this now not so much for me. I'm doing this for the little boys and girls across this state, across this nation, across this world, who are being similarly abused, as I write this, by a loved one or a family friend or a so-called trusted adult."
President Obama has announced his intention to nominate Jannette L. Dates, dean of the Howard University School of Communications from 1993 to 2012, to the board of directors of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. "Since 1968, CPB has been the steward of the federal government's investment in public broadcasting and the largest single source of funding for public radio, television, and related online and mobile services," CPB says.
"The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press has sent a letter asking . . . the Senate Judiciary Committee to raise the issue of the Justice Department's policy on release of federal booking photographs with Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. when he testifies at an oversight hearing scheduled for March 6," the committee said Monday. "The concern comes in light of a new policy by the U.S. Marshals Service to restrict access to federal mug shots. . . . "
Clay Shirky of Columbia Journalism Review compared a Washington Post interactive map of murders in the District of Columbia between 2000 and 2011 with the approach taken by Homicide Watch, which also uses a database feed to track killings. The biggest difference is what readers see. "The Post's default view is a map. Homicide Watch's default view is a face. . . . Not to put too fine a point on it, The Washington Post has produced a white-people map of murder, a map that assumes you couldn't possibly know the victim. Homicide Watch has produced a brown-people map -- a map that assumes you might, a map for a city where brown people are 30 times more likely to be murdered than white people." Homicide Watch is expanding to Chicago.
"PBS is close to a decision on adding weekend broadcasts of the 'PBS NewsHour' for the first time since the program began in 1975, and producing them in New York, instead of the program's longtime studios in Arlington, Va., according to public television employees," Elizabeth Jensen reported Sunday for the New York Times. ". . . Hari Sreenivasan, a correspondent for the program and its director of digital partnerships, has been proposed as the anchor of a weekend program, as has Jeff Greenfield, an occasional anchor of 'Need to Know.' "
The Native American Journalists Association protested to CBS-TV Monday about the sitcom "Mike & Molly," in which, NAJA said, "Mike's mother Peggy, played by Rondi Reed, posed the question, 'Arizona? Why would I go to Arizona? It's nothing but a furnace full of drunk Indians.' "
"More and more Black women are speaking out against the minstrelsy of Black women on negative-themed 'reality' shows," Sil Lai Abrams wrote Feb. 28 for Clutch magazine. "Could it be that Black women are finally getting sick and tired of the 'Crazy Black Reality Chick' meme?" Abrams singled out Meeka Claxton, former "Basketball Wives" cast member; Kelly Smith Beaty, author of a Huffington Post op-ed; Sabrina Lamb, teen financial empowerment guru; and Michaela Angela Davis, former editor-in-chief of Honey magazine, "for having the courage to stand up for Black women, our image, our young girls and our future. . . ."
"History's original mini-series The Bible drew a whopping 13.1 million viewers in its Sunday night debut, according to Nielsen fast cable ratings," R. Thomas Umstead reported Monday for Multichannel News. "The Mark Burnett-produced, 10-hour miniseries is the second-most watched premiere of a non-sports cable show in cable history, behind the 13.9 million viewers History drew with the May 28, 2012 debut of Hatfields & McCoys."
Jim Asendio, former news director at Washington public radio station WAMU-FM, is now a freelance anchor at the Washington-based MarketWatch Radio Network, Asendio confirmed Monday for Journal-isms. "He does twice an hour business newscasts and feature stories for many major market stations including WTOP, plus major CBS all-newsers in NYC, Boston, Chicago, and Los Angeles, Dave Hughes reported for DCRTV.com. " 'I started this month and am filling in as needed. It's great to be back on the air, especially on stations where I once worked,' he tells us.' " Asendio was the highest-ranking African American news director at a top-tier NPR affiliate when he resigned from WAMU a year ago "because I did not agree with an upper management decision to have working journalists attend a donor-only, station-sponsored event."
"Ann Romney told Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday that . . . she is 'mostly over' her husband Mitt's loss in the 2012 presidential election and that the media was unfair to him during the campaign. Romney said that she is 'Happy to blame the media' for his loss'," Garrett Quinn reported Sunday for Mediaite.
"Josh DuBois, who left his position as faith advisor for President Barack Obama early last month, is joining The Daily Beast," Chris O'Shea reported Monday for FishbowlNY. "According to a memo obtained by Politico, [DuBois] will be the site's new faith columnist."
Maurita Coley, chief operating officer of the Minority Media and Telecommunications Council, which advocates for minority broadcast ownership, is profiled by Lauren DeLisa Coleman of Madame Noire. Asked her "recent read," Coleman replied, "I read multiple books at the same time. Right now I'm reading: The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Color-Blindness by Michelle Alexander; Blueprint for Black Economic Empowerment: A Moral, Political, and Economic Imperative for the Twenty-First Century, by Amos Wilson, Ph.D; The Science of Being Great by Wallace D. Wattles; and The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson."
In Washington, "We're just now hearing that Gayle Perkins (later Atkins) died of cancer on December 15th in NYC," Dave Hughes reported Monday for his DCRTV site. "She was editorial director at Channel 4/ WRC in the 1980s, and was a reporter and editor at that station's news radio outlet, WRC-AM, 980, in the 1970s. She later became a member of the New York social scene and married a prominent attorney." More at Legacy.com.
Facebook users: "Like" "Richard Prince's Journal-isms" on Facebook.
The show's first reporter of color since Ed Bradley's death is to bring his skills to the rival network.
ABC News is finalizing a deal to hire Byron Pitts of CBS, a contributor to "60 Minutes" and chief national correspondent for the "CBS Evening News, " according to reliable news reports published Friday.
"Pitts will serve as both chief national correspondent and anchor at ABC News, and will appear across the network's programming. ABC News President Ben Sherwood is expected to announce the news next week," Dylan Byers of Politico, the first to break the news, reported. Marisa Guthrie of the Hollywood Reporter later reported that she had been given the same information by "sources."
"Pitts is just the latest in a string of high-profile hires for the network," Byers wrote. "Sherwood announced the hire of New York Times reporters Jeff Zeleny and Susan Saulny earlier this week, as well as the appointment of Rick Klein to political director. Sources who spoke to POLITICO earlier this week said Sherwood is trying to beef up the network's political bench following a number of recent departures."
Both Pitts and Saulny are black journalists, providing a marked contrast with the new hires at CNN after Jeff Zucker recently assumed the top job. Zucker hired white journalists Jake Tapper, Chris Cuomo and Rachel Nichols while sidelining anchor Soledad O'Brien, who is black and Latina. Zucker's appointment also prompted the resignation of Mark Whitaker, an African American who was CNN executive vice president and managing editor. Zucker's personnel moves prompted protests from the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.
Pitts, 52, joined CBS News as a correspondent in May 1998. He was named a contributing correspondent on "60 Minutes" in 2009, becoming the first African American presence on the show since correspondent Ed Bradley died in 2006. "I wanted to be a part of '60 Minutes' since I was in high school," Pitts then told Richard Huff of the Daily News in New York. "For me, '60 Minutes' is to broadcast journalism what the Yankees are to baseball: It's the gold standard."
Pitts, ABC News and CBS News were not commenting on Friday.
Pitts' wife, Lyne Pitts, is also involved in a new venture. She is heading up the U.S. operation of Arise News, a 24-hour international TV news operation that launched last month.
Byers reported last week, "In recent weeks, ABC News president Ben Sherwood has been courting political reporters from The New York Times, The Washington Post, and other outlets in an effort to strengthen the network's D.C. bureau after a string of recent departures, sources familiar with the network’s plans tell POLITICO. . . .
"Sherwood's motivations are clear: He is eager to bolster ABC's commitment to political coverage, especially after the loss of political director Amy Walter, senior Washington producer Virginia Moseley and chief White House correspondent Jake Tapper — all three of whom left, for various reasons, within the past three months."
Armstrong Williams to Buy Two TV Stations
Armstrong Williams, the conservative commentator and entrepreneur, is buying two television stations newly acquired by Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc., the parties announced Thursday. The transaction would instantly multiply the tiny number of commercial television stations owned by African Americans.
African American ownership dropped from 12 stations in 2009 to 10 stations in 2011, or less than 1 percent of the nation's 1,348 full-power television stations, the Federal Communications Commission said in November.
Williams plans to acquire WEYI-TV, an NBC affiliate in the Flint/Saginaw/Bay City/Midland, Mich., market, ranked no. 67, and WWMB-TV, a CW affiliate in market 103 in the Myrtle Beach/Florence, S.C., market, near Williams' hometown of Marion, S.C.
No purchase price was disclosed. The transaction is part of a larger deal in which Sinclair agreed to purchase the broadcast assets of 18 television stations owned by Barrington Broadcasting Group, LLC for $370 million and entered into agreements to operate or provide sales services to another six stations. The deal is subject to approval by the FCC and antitrust clearance. Williams said he was financing the purchase through J.P. Morgan Chase.
The stations Williams plans to buy are in markets where the Hunt Valley, Md.-based Sinclair would own too many stations under FCC rules.
David D. Smith, president and CEO of Sinclair, said in a statement, "We are pleased to advance the diversity efforts of the FCC and create a path for minority ownership in the broadcast space through Howard Stirk Holdings," Williams' firm. Smith told Journal-isms that Sinclair does not plan to sell any more of the newly acquired stations, since their acquisition would not violate the FCC rules.
In his own statement, Williams said, "Today's announcement fulfills a life-long dream to own and operate broadcast facilities and give back to an industry that I love. I have been privileged to work with the Sinclair Broadcast Group for years and I am truly thankful for the opportunity it has provided. Many in the industry talk about diversity and expanding opportunity, but here the Sinclair Broadcast Group is putting words into action. The name 'Howard Stirk' is taken from my mother's maiden name, Howard, and my [father's middlename], Stirk. Knowing the humble, [hardscrabble] beginnings of my family in rural South Carolina, I felt honoring my parents in this small way was the right thing to do."
The Sinclair announcement noted, "In addition to his well-known work as a political commentator, Mr. Williams has spent nearly twenty years developing and producing high quality television programming, including primetime specials with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, former Vice President Dick Cheney and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. From 2001 to 2003, Mr. Williams served as Chief Operating Officer of the Renaissance Cable TV Network with responsibility for all programming, advertising and content development."
Despite his Republican credentials, Williams told Journal-isms by telephone, "I've evolved. I don't care about political party. I care about what works for the people."
Smith told Journal-isms that he and Williams had long worked together and that Sinclair was looking to expand its relationship with him. "I've always admired his ability to stick his neck out there and call people . . . for what they're doing," he told Journal-isms by telephone. "We're big believers in advocacy journalism, and he fits that mode. He was the first one I called" when the ownership possibility arose.
Williams said that he would manage the stations himself and that the purchase would give him the opportunity to do more television production. He said that he would not want to tamper with the NBC programming but that "local television should be about the local area."
Richard Horgan, FishbowlLA: Three and a Half Decades Later, Stevie Wonder’s Radio Station Still Rocking
Lack of Media Diversity a Worldwide Problem
Diversity in newsrooms is an issue worldwide, according to heads of state, government representatives and experts meeting this week in Vienna.
At the fifth United Nations Alliance of Civilisations (UNAOC) Global Forum, "Leaders from the conflict-plagued Middle East were among the strongest voices calling for media to recognise its responsibility in reporting on diverse cultures fairly and accurately," Pavol Stracansky reported Friday for the Inter Press Service.
"Emir of Qatar, Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, said: 'Understanding others and respecting their cultures and beliefs and the renunciation of extremism, hatred and racism are the most effective ways to plug the pretexts used by those who try to exploit these manifestations to encourage violence and terrorism. There is a growing responsibility of media in portraying the right image of 'the other' while avoiding prejudices and stereotyping others, and looking at the facts to judge accordingly.'
Stracansky continued, "Media experts at the summit in Vienna made several suggestions to improve media diversity:
"Mainstream media needs to be shown what that they can benefit from diversity.
"Media literacy is vital to promoting diversity.
"Laziness is a key reason for journalists not being inclusive in their reporting.
"Indigenous peoples need to be included in mainstream media and not just have their own specific media representing them.
"More women should hold top positions in media.
"Diversity of newsroom staff can help naturally encourage diversity of reporting.
"It is imperative that marginalized communities are represented in the media in a natural way, not just when mainstream papers need to know something about specific ethnic customs or traditions."
Steven M. Ellis added for the International Press Institute, "However, unaddressed was the question of whether moves ostensibly intended to increase diversity are ultimately a positive step when they have the practical effect of limiting media freedom.
"Such a conflict currently exists in Argentina, where the government, which has feuded with media outlet Grupo Clarín over the outlet's critical stance in recent years, threatened last December to implement legal provisions allowing it to seize all but 24 of the outlet's cable television licenses and all but 10 of its open frequency radio or television licenses.
"The government has justified this action as a necessary step to limit concentration of media ownership and ensure greater diversity. Critics, however, believe the move is retaliation for Grupo Clarín's criticism of government policies and violates the outlet's fundamental ownership rights."
Bloomberg Businessweek executives did not return telephone calls or emails this week when Journal-isms inquired about its cover, but when Politico, Slate, the Atlantic and other publications blasted the cover's racial overtones on Thursday, editor Josh Tyrangiel broke his silence.
" 'Our cover illustration last week got strong reactions, which we regret,' Josh Tyrangiel, the magazine's editor, wrote in a statement sent to POLITICO," Dylan Byers, Politico's media reporter, wrote. " 'Our intention was not to incite or offend. If we had to do it over again we'd do it differently.' "
Slate's Matthew Yglesias called that "a pretty categorical non-apology. . . . Note that Tyrangiel doesn't say they regret publishing the actual content of the cover, but the 'strong reactions' that it incited. How hard is it to take responsibility for the cover, say sorry, and leave it at that?"
The cover shows people of color surrounded by cash in a house, with the cover line, "The Great American Housing Rebound," keyed to a story about Phoenix in which no people of color are mentioned.
Ryan Chittum wrote in Columbia Journalism Review, "The cover stands out for its cast of black and Hispanic caricatures with exaggerated features reminiscent of early 20th century race cartoons. Also, because there are only people of color in it, grabbing greedily for cash. It's hard to imagine how this one made it through the editorial process.
"Compounding the first-glance problem with the image is the fact that race has been a key backdrop to the subprime crisis.
"The narrative of the crash on the right has been the blame-minority-borrowers line, sometimes via dog whistle, often via bullhorn.
"It's a narrative that has, not coincidentally, dovetailed with 'Obamaphone' baloney, the ACORN pseudo-scandal, and Southern politicians calling the first black president 'food-stamp president,' and is meant to take the focus off the ultimate culprits: mortgage lenders with no scruples and the Wall Street banks who financed them. . . ."
The artist was Andres Guzman, a Lima, Peru, native currently residing in Minneapolis. CJR's Sara Morrison reported, "He wrote on his blog that he 'was asked to make an excited family with large quantities of money.' He added: 'Drawing dollars was a drag. ' "
Jason Linkins of the Huffington Post added, "Rachel Nagler, Head of Communications for the magazine, passes along a note from Andres Guzman, the illustrator: 'The assignment was an illustration about housing. I simply drew the family like that because those are the kind of families I know. I am Latino and grew up around plenty of mixed families.'
Morrison and Linkins made the point that, in Morrison's words, "All that said, it's surprising that no one at Businessweek took a minute to consider that the cover could be viewed as racist."
That, too, was the message from the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists:
"The image that was published by Bloomberg BusinessWeek is just a microcosm of a bigger problem in the magazine industry — the lack of diversity," NABJ President Gregory Lee Jr. said in a statement. "The last presidential election demonstrated that our nation’s demographics are changing rapidly and it is essential that media companies should make the appropriate changes to welcome diversity in their newsrooms, specifically in managerial positions.”
Errin Haines, NABJ vice president-print, said in the same statement, "Being controversial is one thing, but this cover is clearly offensive and demeaning.
"What is the message this cover seeks to convey to readers? And who thought this was a good idea? That such an image would be published by a magazine of the stature and exposure of Bloomberg BusinessWeek suggests that there was no one with the cultural sensitivity or awareness in the room to step in before this cover made it to press.
"While that fact is problematic, this incident presents an opportunity to prevent such oversights in the future, and NABJ stands ready to help the magazine bring more diversity to its masthead."
"In an interview, Hugo Balta, the president of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, said the cover 'continues to speak to the insensitivity of how minorities, and in this case Latinos, are being portrayed in media,' " Tanzina Vega wrote for the New York Times.
" 'I think it oversimplifies an issue that obviously has tremendous financial impact to the country, and it also puts a face to a community that is too often vulnerable to those types of attacks,' Mr. Balta said. 'If we go with the old saying that a picture is worth a [thousand] words, the message in this picture is that it's the minority’s fault.' "
Emily Badger blog, the Atlantic: Bloomberg Businessweek's Racist Cover Also Gets the Housing Crisis Backwards
Hugo Balta, National Association of Hispanic Journalists: Bloomberg Businessweek Cover: Blame the- Latinos for Your Problems? (March 1)
Wayne Bennett, Field Negro: The last day of Black History Month.
Adrian Carrasquillo, NBCLatino: Bloomberg Businessweek cover blasted as offensive for depictions of Hispanics, blacks
Matthew Iglesias, Slate: The Context for Businessweek's Housing Cover
Channing Kennedy, ColorLines: Bloomberg Businessweek’s New Name-That-Racial-Stereotype Cover
Miami, Fresno, Lakeland Lead in Sports Journalists of Color
After previewing its major findings earlier in the week, Richard Lapchick, director of the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at the University of Central Florida, released its annual report Friday evaluating diversity in sports journalism at more than 150 newspapers and websites.
Lapchick told the Associated Press Sports Editors, which requested the report, "For 2012, the grade for racial hiring practices for APSE newspapers and websites remained at a C+, the same grade issued in the 2010 Study. . . . The grade issued for gender hiring practices remained constant as well, recording the third consecutive F for gender hiring practices."
The full report provided details not disclosed in Lapchick's column Monday.
For example, "In circulation size 'A' papers, the Miami Herald (FL) had the highest percentage for people of color at 38.1 percent. For the second year in a row, The Fresno Bee (CA) had the highest percentage of people of color at 'B' newspapers with 45.5 percent. The Lakeland Ledger (FL) had the highest percentage for people of color for size 'C' newspapers at 33.3 percent. In size 'D' newspapers, both the Triangle Tribune (NC) and Ste. Genevieve Herald (MO) had 100 percent people of color. It should be noted that each only reported one employee. For papers with five or more employees, the Midland [Reporter-Telegram] (TX) had the highest percentage with 50 percent people of color in the size 'D' category."
When people of color and women are tallied, the results were:
"Of all the 'A' circulation size papers, the Miami Herald (FL) totaled the highest percentage of diversity within its sports staff for the second straight year with 76.2 percent people of color and/or women. The New Orleans [Times]-Picayune leads the 'B' circulation size papers with 63.6 percent of their staff being women and/or people of color. The Register-Guard (OR) led the circulation size 'C' papers with 90 percent of its sports staff being women or people of color. Finally, in the circulation size 'D' papers with more than five employees, there was a tie at 66.7 percent women and people of color between the Iowa City Press-Citizen (IA) and the Midland Reporter-Telegram (TX)."
Maria Burns Ortiz, one of the few Latina sports columnists and leader of the Sports Task Force of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, told Journal-isms Friday that her social media column for espn.com is going on hiatus.
Ortiz's column notwithstanding, the study from the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport asserted Friday, "For the fourth straight survey of the APSE newspapers and websites, there were no Latina columnists."
"I've actually been a freelancer (since 2006) — so I'm guessing I'm simply not considered as part of the company's demographics," Ortiz said. "Additionally, I was notified on Thursday that due to ESPN budgetary issues, my column is actually going on indefinite hiatus so yesterday was my last column," she messaged.
Ortiz, a former regional director of NAHJ, also contributes regular sports columns to Fox News Latino. She covered men's college soccer for ESPN starting in 2006, then was a Page 2 contributor before beginning the social media column in 2011.
Of the low numbers of Latinas, "I think it speaks to the dearth of Latinas in sports journalism, which I've written about in the past," Ortiz said. "What I find more troubling is that looking ahead to the future I don't see anything that leads me to believe any significant change is on the horizon," she wrote. "The study notes no Latinas as sports columnists and an all-time low in Latina sports reporters. The other numbers don't bode much better. Through my work with NAHJ, this is something I've tried to tackle, but it is definitely an uphill battle."
The NAHJ Sports Task Force plans a session at NAHJ's Region 2 conference in New York next week.
A Year After Tirade, Limbaugh Still Bad for Business
"It's been one year since Rush Limbaugh's invective-filled tirade against then-Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke. With hundreds of advertisers and millions of dollars lost, the business of right-wing radio is suffering, but Rush Limbaugh continues to act as if it were business as usual, which is why Limbaugh is still bad for business," Angelo Carusone wrote Friday for Media Matters for America.
"On February 29, 2012, Rush Limbaugh initiated a three-day smear campaign against Sandra Fluke, launching 46 personal attacks against her. This moment and Limbaugh's subsequent refusal to apologize for, or even acknowledge, all but two of those attacks put the spotlight on the right-wing talk business model that Limbaugh helped construct.
"During the following weeks, headlines tracked in near real-time the names of advertisers exiting Limbaugh's show as pundits and natterers speculated about Limbaugh's future. As so often happens, the buzz faded and the news cycle rolled on. But the consequences didn't fade, they intensified. This is due in large part to scores of independent organizers, like the Flush Rush and the #StopRush community. . . ."
What Will Journalists of Color Regret in 2050?
"Yes, we in the media can have blind spots — often huge ones — when it comes to social change," multimedia journalist Farai Chideya wrote Friday for the cover story of Columbia Journalism Review. "To help identify them, we set out to have a national conversation about what we’re missing these days, and how media must adapt to cover an America that constantly reinvents itself.
"Race, class, immigration, and social mobility were the issues we used to frame our discussion, conducted in January. Using the online conversation tool Branch, we virtually convened 18 members of the media and asked them to weigh in."
Chideya received a variety of responses when she asked, "If we were to write the mea culpa of race coverage for 2050, what would it be? What are we missing now? And how do we deal with what we missed before?"
Raju Narisetti, newly named senior vice president and deputy head of strategy for the New News Corporation, said, "In hindsight, we might be apologizing for treating race through a white/nonwhite prism, long after America became much more multicultural, and race reporting ought to have become as much about covering 'white' issues, and not just in relation to nonwhite 'minorities.' "
Eric Deggans, media critic for the Tampa Bay (Fla.) Times, said, "I write a lot about how race and prejudice play out in media. But I was still shocked during an interview with Shirley Sherrod — yes, that 'Breitbarted' Shirley Sherrod [who was bullied into resigning from a government job after racial comments she made were taken out of context] — when she told me a high school near her home in Georgia still has segregated proms. Far as the nation has come on racial issues, especially in big cities, there is a still a lot of prejudice and ignorance out there. I have a feeling future news outlets will be apologizing for allowing the level of racial animus toward nonwhite people which still appears on Fox News Channel, the Drudge Report, The Daily Caller, and many areas of conservative media."
June Cross, assistant professor at Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, said, "We will have missed the nuances of race and ethnicity. When I get together with my Latino friends, they talk about how different their individual cultures are: Mexican, Dominican, Puerto Rican, Colombian, and Guatemalan [cultures] not only have different holidays and use the same word to connote different things; they also speak Spanish in different accents. The cities that receive immigrants are creating a melting pot of Latin America that I haven't seen reported at all in mainstream press. Ditto for the immigrant flow from Africa and the West Indies. Further, in the press's binary paradigm, undocumented immigrants are rarely Russian, Eastern European, Canadian, Irish — even though their ranks also fill immigration detention centers."
As February Closes, Two Seek to Clarify Blackness
Among the pieces closing out Black History Month 2013 was an essay by Tonyaa Weathersbee decrying that "more black people seem to be using their money or their fame to look whiter, rather than use it to make people appreciate their blackness," and another by Ivory A. Toldson, Ph.D., knocking down the oft-repeated line that there are more black men behind bars than in college.
"Today there are approximately 600,000 more black men in college than in jail, and the best research evidence suggests that the line was never true to begin with," Toldson wrote Thursday for The Root.
"In this two-part entry in Show Me the Numbers, the Journal of Negro Education's monthly series for The Root, I examine the dubious origins, widespread use and harmful effects of what is arguably the most frequently quoted statistic about black men in the United States."
Weathersbee, writing Tuesday for Black America Web, argued, "Sometimes, I think we ought to dedicate Black History Month to reviewing the part about black pride.
"I say this because these days, it seems that a lot of us either missed that chapter or just decided to skip it altogether. . . ."
Calling out such celebrities as Lil' Kim, Nicki Minaj, Sammy Sosa, Trina McGee of the television series "Boy Meets World" and Jamaican rapper Vybz Kartel, Weathersbee wrote, "Tanned white people have never been banned from using bathrooms and water fountains, while black people have been denied access strictly for being black."
"Do news blackouts help journalists held captive?" asks a headline over a piece Tuesday by Frank Smyth of the Committee to Protect Journalists. "The matter is hardly an academic one for journalists and others either known to be in captivity or still missing today," Smyth wrote. "Freelance journalist James Foley, a contributor to Global Post, was kidnapped in northwest Syria late last year; his family waited six weeks before deciding to make the case public. He remains missing. Austin Tice, a freelance journalist for McClatchy newspapers and The Washington Post, was seized in Damascus in August, and what appears to be a staged video of him in captivity leads observers to suggest that Syrian government forces may be holding him. His parents recently traveled to Beirut to try and appeal to whoever may be holding him.. . ."
"Mexican authorities say gunmen have attacked a newspaper in the northern city of Torreon for the third consecutive day, killing a bystander and wounding two federal police officers guarding the building," the Associated Press reported Wednesday. "Coahuila state prosecutors say the attack on the offices of El Siglo de Torreon happened Wednesday afternoon. Just hours earlier, the newspaper published a story detailing an attack on Tuesday in which gunmen wielding automatic rifles fired at least 30 shots at the building’s main door from a car."
"From humble beginnings on the Cheyenne River Reservation to New York City Radio Host, Tiokasin Ghosthorse is making a mark on mainstream society," Christina Rose wrote for Native Sun News. "Growing up with oral traditions, he has taken the tradition on the road and used it to bring awareness of the crises facing Mother Earth and all people. His program 'First Voices Indigenous Radio' is heard on 43 frequencies in the United States and people in Europe and Australia tune in to his website weekly to hear the voices of Indigenous people from around the country and the world."
"Following his fiery, contentious segment with Democratic congressman Keith Ellison, Sean Hannity decided 'to take a closer look at the man who called me immoral and a liar,' " Meenal Vamburkar reported Friday for Mediaite. "Asserting hypocrisy, Hannity hit Ellison’s 'radical connections,' linking him with Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan."
"Ron Oliveira, a fixture on Austin TV for three decades, will sign off from KEYE's 5, 6 and 10 p.m. newscasts on Friday," Gary Dinges wrote Wednesday for the Austin (Texas) American-Statesman. "After eight years at the station, the anchor says managers told him his contract wouldn't be extended. 'I was informed that the corporate office in Baltimore decided not to renew my contract,' he said. 'No reason was given. It took me by total surprise. I’m heartbroken because I love what I do.' "
"After a 42-year television career, anchor Ysabel Duron has announced she's retiring from KRON-4 in San Francisco," Veronica Villafañe reported Friday for her Media Moves site. "She has been with the station almost 23 years. A weekend anchor of 'KRON 4 Weekend Morning News,' Ysabel joined the station as a general assignment reporter in 1990. She was named morning weekend anchor in 1992."
"Many of our crime stories involving robberies include a description of the suspects when provided by police. White, black, Asian, it doesn't matter," Mike Johnston, managing editor of Canada's durhamregion.com, which publishes content from several newspapers, wrote Wednesday. "If that description helps with an arrest, we are glad to help. But lately, when the suspect was black, it brought out the most vile, repulsive and offensive comments we have ever had on our website. In fact, it has now got to the point that we are turning off commenting on crime stories when they appear on our website."
The family of Maya Jackson Randall, a reporter at the Dow Jones Newswires/Wall Street Journal Washington bureau who died at 33 this week after a long fight with leukemia, has created a memorial fund to start a public charity in her honor. The total passed the $6,500 mark on Saturday morning. The goal is $10,000. [Updated March 2.]
"Angry Kenyans have taken issue with a news item broadcast by CNN, claiming that Kenyans were arming themselves and preparing for war, ahead of Monday's historic poll," Wambui Ndonga reported Friday for Capital FM in Nairobi. "The Kenyans who vented their anger on social networks like Facebook and Twitter accused the international media house of bias over its article titled 'Kenyans armed and ready to vote'."
"The Taliban has dissociated itself; the Pakistan Army has extended its condolences; and government functionaries, politicians, and civil-society representatives have offered condolences as 'unidentified' armed men took the life of another journalist in Pakistan's perilous tribal areas on February 27," Daud Khattak reported Thursday for Radio Free Europe/Radio Free Liberty. "Malik Mumtaz, who was reporting from Miranshah, North Waziristan, for Pakistan's 'The News International' and Geo television, was gunned down while on his way home from a funeral in a nearby village. He thus became the 11th tribal journalist killed in armed attacks or bomb blasts since February 7, 2005."
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