The anchor will leave her morning show to produce documentaries for the network.
"Soledad O'Brien will leave CNN's morning show in the spring, but she won't be leaving the cable news channel altogether," as Brian Stelter put it Thursday for the New York Times.
"Ms. O'Brien, who is well-known for CNN documentaries like 'Black in America,' said Thursday that she would form a production company and continue to supply documentaries to CNN on a nonexclusive basis. She'll also make them for other television channels and for the Web."
The removal of O'Brien from the anchor desk appeared to leave the main CNN U.S. network with no anchors of color during the week.
O'Brien, daughter of a white Australian father and a black Cuban mother, was named "Journalist of the Year" by the National Association of Black Journalists in 2010. NABJ called her "the impetus of CNN's acclaimed 'In America' franchise, which began with CNN's 'Black [in] America' in 2008, a groundbreaking documentary, which took an in-depth look at the challenges confronting blacks in America." Later, the series took on "Latino in America" and "Gay in America."
Stelter's story continued, " 'There's so many great stories to tell,' said Ms. O'Brien, who is preparing two new installments of the 'Black in America' franchise for CNN.
"The deal is an unusual one for CNN. In effect, Ms. O'Brien will go from being an anchor to an outside producer. She may have had little choice in the matter: the new head of CNN Worldwide, Jeff Zucker, decided even before he started the job in January that he wanted to replace Ms. O'Brien's morning show, 'Starting Point,' with a brand new one."
The "In America" franchise is expected to continue after those two installments.
In its official announcement, CNN said, ". . . O'Brien's company, which will launch in June, will produce three long-form programming specials for CNN in 2014. Those specials will include one of the network's most successful franchises, Black in America. O'Brien's new production company, Starfish Media Group, in conjunction with CNN, will act as the exclusive worldwide distributor of previous documentaries featuring O'Brien. She will also host the 2013 CNN Black in America documentary, which will air later this year."
" 'We greatly value Soledad's experience, and her first-rate storytelling will continue to be an asset to CNN,' said Zucker. 'Documentaries and long-form story telling are important to our brand and we're anticipating more of what we've come to expect from her‹ riveting content.' "
Stelter's story continued, "The hosts of the new, as-yet-untitled show have not been named, but Mr. Zucker hired Chris Cuomo from ABC last month with the intention of pairing him with Erin Burnett, who presently hosts the 7 p.m. hour on CNN. . . ."
In a story widely picked up in social media and on websites Tuesday, the New York Post's Page Six gossip column reported that "Page Six has exclusively learned" that "High-profile morning anchor Soledad O'Brien is on her way out at CNN."
However, neither CNN nor O'Brien would confirm the item, attributed to unnamed sources, and the ultimate resolution of O'Brien's status proved not so cut and dried.
Earlier Thursday, O'Brien acknowledged that "Starting Point" would end, but said she was "talking" with the network about her role.
O'Brien stopped by "The Wendy Williams Show" on Thursday and Williams immediately asked whether she would be leaving CNN, Mackenzie Weinger reported for Politico.
" 'You know, we're talking about my role,' O'Brien told Williams. 'As you know, it's been reported a lot that the morning show is going a different direction. So, we're talking about what ways I can contribute to CNN. Doing stuff I like to do, which is hard-hitting journalism.' . . ."
Judge Tells Journalist What Not to Write
A federal judge in Miami ordered a Haitian-American journalist never again to write about the professional, personal or political lives of Haiti's prime minister or a South Florida businessman, ruling that the journalist had defamed them.
"The ruling seems pretty outrageous on its face," Gregg Leslie, legal defense director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, told Journal-isms by telephone on Wednesday. According to Nolo's Plain-English Law Dictionary, ". . . Prior restraints are considered a violation of the First Amendment and are rarely permitted except in cases in which the publication is obscene, defamatory, or represents a clear and present danger -- a theory articulated by the U.S. Supreme Court in Near v. Minnesota (1931)."
Leo Joseph, journalist for the New York-based Haiti Observateur, told Journal-isms by telephone that he was not even in Florida when the Feb. 6 ruling was issued. "I did not have thousands of dollars to defend myself," Joseph said. "I had no desire to make a fool of myself." He added, "They never served me properly. I'm going to appeal this. . . . I did not have a lawyer." Of those who sued him, Joseph said, "I did not think they had the guts to do it."
Leslie said the ruling by U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro sounded as though she invited the lawyers for the plaintiffs to draw up a proposed order, which she accepted. "It seems like the judge signed it without thinking it through," Leslie said.
Joseph agreed. He told Journal-isms, ". . . They were trying to silence me, because I have more stuff coming."
The Florida law firm Perlman, Bajandas, Yevoli & Albright, P.L., distributed a news release on Tuesday, apparently on behalf of the Haitian plaintiffs. The Associated Press transmitted a story the same day.
The news release began, "A US Federal Judge ruled on February 6, 2013 against the Haiti Observateur, a New York based Website noting that it had published false and defamatory statements against Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe and Patrice Baker, his former business partner and prominent South Florida businessman. The ruling also notes that the Website and its reporter acted with malice.
"In August 2012 Leo Joseph, a reporter for the Haiti Observateur, wrote two articles making allegations against Baker and Lamothe in relation to the sale of a bankrupted telephone company in Haiti.
"Noting the false and malicious nature of the accusations, Baker and Lamothe immediately sued Joseph and the Haiti Observateur in a US District Court, Southern District of Florida. Federal Judge Ursula Ungaro provided a sweeping ruling that sided entirely with the plaintiffs. Judge Ungaro notes in her ruling that the Haiti Observateur's publications are 'replete with statements that are outrageous, scandalous and reminiscent of a tabloid publication. . . . ' "
Joseph told Journal-isms, ". . . After this, I am going to sue them back." But first, he said, he is looking for a lawyer.
The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, founded in 1970, provides free legal advice, resources, support and advocacy to protect the First Amendment and Freedom of Information rights of journalists working in areas where U.S. law applies, regardless of the medium in which their work appears, according to its website.
It was founded after New York Times reporter Earl Caldwell, later a founder of the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education, was ordered to reveal to a federal grand jury his sources in the Black Panther organization, threatening his independence as a newsgatherer.
Joseph said the Haiti Observateur has a circulation of 40,000 for its print edition and reaches "no less than 25,000 every week" on the Internet.
International Press Institute: IPI Special Report: Criminal defamation laws remain widespread in the Caribbean (Feb. 4)
Ken Moritsugu, Bangkok-based Asia enterprise editor for the Associated Press, won a special election for vice president for print of the Asian American Journalists Association, the group announced on Tuesday. Moritsugu defeated Neal Justin, TV and media critic for the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, 133 to 114.
Asked how he would fulfill his duties from Asia, Moritsugu told Journal-isms by email, "We have three board meetings a year so I'll be flying to the US for them."
He said in a statement, ". . . As a longtime member who has led chapters in both the U.S. and Asia, I also hope to build bridges between our membership at home and overseas."
AAJA announced, ". . . Moritsugu has served on the boards of three AAJA chapters and is a former president of AAJA-New York. He is currently president of AAJA's Asia Chapter, and during his tenure the chapter has grown from 30 to 130 members and launched an annual conference with the University of Hong Kong." He is also the son of Henry Moritsugu, assistant news editor at Newsday.
"AAJA held a special election to fill the post of Vice President for Print after Tom Lee resigned from the position for personal reasons in January. Moritsugu will serve out the remainder of the term" until December, the announcement continued.
"After two interim deans and more than a year of searching, the University of North Texas named Dorothy M. Bland dean of the university's school of journalism on Tuesday," Rachel Mehlhaff reported for the Denton (Texas) Record-Chronicle.
Bland headed the Division of Journalism at Florida A&M University from 2007 until last fall, when she stepped down from the director's position to pursue a Ph.D. A new dean, Ann Wead Kimbrough, assumed control of the School of Journalism and Graphic Communication in August.
A former publisher of the Fort Collins (Colo.) Coloradoan, Bland was one of only a handful of black female daily newspaper publishers during her career with the Gannett Co., Inc., which ended in 2005. She is a 1982 graduate of the Maynard Institute's Editing Program for Minority Journalists.
Warren Burggren, provost and vice president for academic affairs, told the Denton newspaper that Bland was the university's choice because of her experience in publishing and higher education.
"She has deep experience in both those areas," Burggren said.
FAMU saw its share of controversy in January when Kimbrough ordered the Famuan, the student newspaper, "delayed" until Jan. 30 while she implemented training for staff members.
Press-freedom groups such as the Society of Professional Journalists and the Student Press Law Center objected. Overall, the university had accreditation issues and was weathering negative publicity generated by the well-publicized hazing death of drum major Robert Champion in November 2011.
"President Barack Obama is a master at limiting, shaping and manipulating media coverage of himself and his White House," Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen wrote Monday for Politico.
"Not for the reason that conservatives suspect: namely, that a liberal press willingly and eagerly allows itself to get manipulated. Instead, the mastery mostly flows from a White House that has taken old tricks for shaping coverage (staged leaks, friendly interviews) and put them on steroids using new ones (social media, content creation, precision targeting). And it's an equal opportunity strategy: Media across the ideological spectrum are left scrambling for access.
"The results are transformational. With more technology, and fewer resources at many media companies, the balance of power between the White House and press has tipped unmistakably toward the government. This is an arguably dangerous development, and one that the Obama White House -- fluent in digital media and no fan of the mainstream press -- has exploited cleverly and ruthlessly. And future presidents from both parties will undoubtedly copy and expand on this approach. . . . "
Meanwhile, "Continuing to hunt for a political advantage in the fight over the looming sequester," Obama was scheduled Wednesday "to conduct interviews with eight local television stations in an attempt to intensify pressure on congressional Republicans," Justin Sink reported for the Hill.
The anchors included Vic Carter, news anchor for WJZ-TV, the CBS affiliate in Baltimore.
Dylan Byers, Politico: Ed Henry: 'This isn't about a golf game'
Stanley Crouch, Daily News, New York: The GOP pied piper of common sense: Joe Scarborough points the way toward reason, unlike most of his wayward party
David Ferguson, Raw Story: Maddow: Regular Americans routinely ask tougher questions than whiny Beltway media
Ruben Navarrette Jr., Washington Post Writers Group: Rubio's sip was no fatal slip
Clarence Page, Chicago Tribune: Rubio vs. an invisible Obama
Ishmael Reed, New York Times: Neo-Classical Republicanism
Meenal Vamburkar, Mediaite: Morning Joe Chides 'High-Maintenance' Press Corps For Complaining About Access To Obama
Dr. Boyce Watkins, syndicated: Study: Obama Pays Less Attention to Race than Any Democratic President in the Last 50 Years
DeWayne Wickham, USA Today: Chris Christie, not Rubio, best bet in 2016
" 'Now,' Robin Roberts said to the staff of her top-rated morning show, 'Good Morning America,' right after it wrapped on Wednesday, 'we can resume regular programming,' " Brian Stelter reported Wednesday for the New York Times.
"Ms. Roberts had just made a television comeback unlike any other, as a host of the program for the first time since she was forced to leave it in August to fight a life-threatening illness. The return, promoted two weeks ahead of time by ABC, was celebrated by fans, tens of thousands of whom sent well-wishes on social networking sites. Many of them watch the program specifically for Ms. Roberts, who is, according to industry research, the most-liked host on any American morning news program by a wide margin. . . ."
"Ken Burns and his production company, Florentine Films, overcame efforts by New York City officials to forcibly seek the release of outtakes and footage from his recent film about five men wrongly convicted in the attack and rape of a Central Park jogger," Jack Komperda wrote Wednesday for the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.
"Federal magistrate judge Ronald Ellis granted on Tuesday the request by the famed documentary filmmaker's team to quash the city's subpoena seeking the unpublished material from the film 'The Central Park Five,' concluding that the documentarians had demonstrated the requisite independence to be considered journalists under the reporter's privilege.
"Judge Ellis also found that New York City officials were not able to overcome the privilege by showing that the information they sought involved a significant issue in this case that was unavailable by other means.
"The film, which was released last November, depicts the experiences of five men convicted of the April 1989 attack on Trisha Meili. The men served full sentences before finally being exonerated after another person confessed to the attack. They have since filed a $250 million civil rights lawsuit against the city. . . ."
"The new T magazine made an impressive start on Sunday," public editor Margaret Sullivan wrote Wednesday for the New York Times. "Thick with ads, its editorial content -- including a fascinating cover story on the 79-year-old socialite Lee Radziwill -- was strong.
" 'T: The Times Style Magazine' has been redesigned with a well-respected new editor, Deborah Needleman, who came to The Times recently from The Wall Street Journal.
"There was much to admire. But many readers found one aspect of the magazine disturbing -- its lack of people of color. . . ."
". . . I asked Ms. Needleman to respond. She noted that the response to the magazine has been extremely positive but said she agrees with this complaint. And she intends to remedy it in future issues. She wrote:
" 'It was something I noticed and regretted as we were putting the issue together. We are a global magazine and so would like the content, subjects and geography of stories to reflect that. In coming issues, we cover the people and places of Seoul, São Paulo, Kenya, Bollywood actors, Nigeria, etc. A majority of fashion models are still unfortunately mostly white, but it is our aim to celebrate quality and beauty in all its diverse forms. We can and will aim to do better, but our goal is first and foremost to deliver the best stories we find, and it is my belief that quality and good journalism appeal to all of us regardless of our specific ethnic origins.' . . . "
Kevin Merida, newly promoted to managing editor at the Washington Post, and his wife, author and former Post columnist Donna Britt, were among 31 current and former journalists of color Tuesday at a Journalists Roundtable dinner in Washington. Many were Post alumni.
Merida, the first African American to become a Post managing editor, said the historic significance of his promotion took a while to sink in. As national editor, Merida said he was still focused on those duties and on family considerations when new Executive Editor Martin Baron extended the offer. Eventually, Merida said he realized that not only would he become managing editor of his hometown paper but also the breaker of a glass ceiling. When the announcement was made on Feb. 4, the flood of congratulations from colleagues, friends and acquaintances present and past confirmed the promotion's significance.
Merida said he advises young people that it is a great time to become a journalist, citing the steady creation of new positions at the Post in the digital space. He also said his lifelong familiarity with the Washington area would be part of what he brings to the managing editor's job.
In November, HuffPost BlackVoices named Merida and Britt one of eight "BV Power Couples," although, as Britt said at the time, they are "a couple that's neither glamorous, rich nor famous." This particular night, however, was Merida's.
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The AOJ Foundation and the Freedom Forum Diversity Institute at Vanderbilt University are sponsoring the 18th Annual Minority Writers Seminar May 2-5 in Nashville, Tenn., the Association of Opinion Journalists announces. Registration information is at http://www.minoritywritersseminar.org. The application deadline is March 15.
Tony Gaskins, for 18 years a reporter at WEWS-TV in Cleveland, died Tuesday of an apparent heart attack, Leon Bibb reported Tuesday for WEWS. He was 56. "Tony was the kind of reporter every news director wants on the street. He could dig for the facts of a breaking news story, get the story written, meet the deadline for the story, and present it on camera in a calm and professional manner. . . ." In recent years, Gaskins worked for the city of Cleveland, Mark Dawidziak reported for the Plain Dealer.
In San Antonio, Texas, news anchor Karen Martinez of KABB-TV died Monday night after battling breast cancer for five years, WOAI-TV reported. Martinez, 37, "was a driving force behind the annual Healing Hearts Gala fundraiser, which raised money for cancer research and treatments."
Hispanicize 2013, a partnership of the Hispanic Public Relations Association, Hispanicize and the Public Relations Society of America, is planning 20 sessions for its inaugural Hispanic Journalist Showcase, the organization announced. The event is scheduled for the Eden Roc Hotel in Miami Beach, April 9-13.
The Radio Television Digital News Association wrote Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor expressing its disappointment that she no longer favors television cameras and microphones in the courtroom. "RTNDA urges you to reconsider your position, and believes you and your colleagues should provide unlimited seating in our nation's highest court by permitting audiovisual coverage of its proceedings," Executive Director Mike Cavender wrote.
"Ray Lewis has joined another team: ESPN," Richard Deitsch wrote Wednesday for Sports Illustrated, referring to the Baltimore Ravens linebacker. "SI.com first reported on Jan. 3 that Lewis was close to signing with ESPN, and Tuesday at a launch event in New York City for a new ESPN Films documentary series, ESPN president John Skipper confirmed the hire when asked how comfortable he was with the possibility of Lewis as an NFL analyst. . . ."
"In the wake of President Rafael Correa's landslide re-election on Sunday, many Ecuadoran reporters are bracing for another four years of conflict with his left-leaning government," John Otis reported Wednesday for the Committee to Protect Journalists. "Neither side claims to relish the prospect, but continued clashes seem inevitable given the bad blood that has developed between them. . . . "
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.
Did the actor really call the New York Post staffer a "coon, a drug dealer"?
"Actor Alec Baldwin allegedly called a black Post photographer a racial epithet, a 'crackhead' and a 'drug dealer' during a confrontation on an East Village street yesterday morning, prompting police to intervene," Leonard Greene reported Monday for the New York Post.
The story was noticed almost immediately by the right-wing Breitbart.com. "Isn't it great to be Alec Baldwin?" asked Breitbart's Larry O'Connor. "When you're Alec Baldwin you can do or say pretty much anything and there are no repercussions. You can even call a member of the media a 'coon' and a 'crackhead' and still be celebrated by Hollywood and by the Left because . . . well . . . because you're Alec Baldwin and you're a liberal. . . ."
Greene's story continued, "Baldwin had first been approached by a Post reporter while walking his dogs outside his East 10th Street pad at around 10:50 a.m. He was asked for comment on a lawsuit against his wife, Hilaria, involving her work as a yoga instructor.
"The '30 Rock' star grabbed the reporter, Tara Palmeri, by her arm and told her, 'I want you to choke to death,' Palmeri told police, for whom she played an audiotape of the conversation.
"He then called G.N. Miller -- a decorated retired detective with the NYPD's Organized Crime Control Bureau and a staff photographer for The Post -- a 'coon, a drug dealer,' Miller's police statement said.
"At one point, Miller showed Baldwin ID to prove he's a retired NYPD cop, which Baldwin dismissed as 'fake.'
"Cops were called, and Miller, 56, and Baldwin, 54, both filed harassment claims against each other.
". . . Although both men made police reports, it's a case of he said-he said because the incident did not happen in the presence of a police officer.
"Neither police complaint will go any further, except in possible civil action.
"Baldwin's spokesman, Matthew Hiltzik, called Miller's accusations 'completely false.'
"Baldwin, through Hiltzik, denied making the racist remarks, adding, 'That's one of the most outrageous things I've heard in my life.'
"But Baldwin has a history of making inappropriate comments to photographers.
"Last June, the day before his wedding, Baldwin shouted to a black photographer on the street, 'You gotta back up there Rodney.'
"The photographer's name wasn't Rodney."
"Journalists who uncovered corruption at the highest levels of the Chinese government, exposed abuses at New Jersey's halfway houses and, at great personal risk, delved deep into the Syrian civil war were among the winners of 14 George Polk Awards for 2012 announced Monday," Marc Santora reported for the New York Times.
Long Island University, which administers the awards, announced, "The staff of Bloomberg News and David Barboza of The New York Times will both receive the George Polk Award for Foreign Reporting, for investigative reports that untangled the financial holdings of China's political elite and uncovered corruption within the world's most populous country. . . .
"Barboza's explosive three-part series in The New York Times, 'The Princelings,' probed into the far-reaching financial interests of officials and their extended families. The veteran Shanghai correspondent revealed that relatives of Prime Minister Wen Jiabao had accumulated a secret wealth of $2.7 billion. At personal risk, Barboza took novel approaches to discovering family connections -- including examining gravestones in villages and circulating photos from government ID cards to confirm identities.
"The ramifications of these revelations came at a cost for both outlets. Bloomberg's story was banned and remains blocked in China. The New York Times had started a Chinese-language Web site shortly before Barboza's exposé, but within minutes of publication of the first article in the Times' series, the Chinese government blocked the newspaper's Chinese and English language websites. . . ."
Barboza has been based in Shanghai since November 2004. His seven brothers include writer Steven Barboza and photographer Anthony Barboza, who have each created work about various aspects of black life.
In another category, "An assiduous investigation and report showing how Walmart fueled its overseas growth through bribes has earned David Barstow of The New York Times and Mexican reporter Alejandra Xanic von Bertrab the George Polk Award for Business Reporting," the university said.
". . . Traveling across Mexico with Mexican reporter Alejandra Xanic von Bertrab, Barstow tunneled into databases and filing cabinets of local bureaucracies that govern construction permits and zoning issues. He discovered how Walmart had paid bribes in city after city to win approvals that the law did not allow. Barstow's muckraking spurred investigations by the Justice Department, the Securities and Exchange Commission and Mexican authorities into the wrongdoing and led Wal-Mart to examine its violations of the anti-bribery laws in several countries. . . ."
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Reporter Gina Barton wins national Polk journalism award
Hazel Sheffield, Columbia Journalism Review: '47 percent' story wins a Polk Award
"An unprecedented rise in the number of journalists killed and imprisoned in the past year, coupled with restrictive legislation and state censorship, is jeopardising independent reporting in many countries, according to a report issued today," Roy Greenslade reported Friday for his media blog in Britain's Guardian newspaper.
" 'Attacks on the press,' the yearly assessment of global press freedom released by the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), makes for depressing reading.
"It reveals a deteriorating environment for press freedom. In 2012, the number of journalists imprisoned worldwide reached a record high, a trend driven primarily by terrorism and other anti-state charges levied against critical reporters and editors.
"CPJ identified 232 journalists behind bars because of their work in 2012, an increase of 53 from 2011 and the highest since the organisation began its annual surveys in 1990.
"Its research shows that over the past two decades, a journalist is killed in the line of duty once every eight days. Seventy journalists lost their lives in the line of duty in 2012, a 43% increase from 2011. More than 35 journalists have gone missing. . . . "
Jan Beyer, International Press Institute: IPI urges swift investigation into Indian journalist's death
Committee to Protect Journalists: DRC journalist jailed after story on Chinese-run hospital
Fox News Latino and Associated Press: Ecuador's Rafael Correa Wins 2nd Re-Election, Vows to Deepen Revolution
Stephen Franklin, Columbia Journalism Review: [Turkey:] Where truth is a hard cell
International Press Institute: Journalists' safety draws international mission to Mexico
Patrick Kingsley, the Guardian, Britain: Egyptian editor says he was forced out by Muslim Brotherhood
Carlos Lauría, Committee to Protect Journalists: How the Americas Failed Press Freedom
Reporters Without Borders: [Mali:] French military intervention achieves "zero image of the war front" media objective
"Today, in early 2013, American media and entertainment face a curious condition," Ernest J. Wilson III wrote for the Root. "On the one hand, African Americans and other people of color are flocking to movies, Twitter, television and blogs in ever-greater numbers and percentages. We are huge consumers of media."
Wilson is Walter Annenberg chair in communication and dean of the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California.
He continued: "On the other hand, the Federal Communications Commission and the Hollywood trade and professional organizations report that the percentages of people of color (and in many categories, women) in senior positions are stagnant or actually declining. Minority ownership is also on the way down. With black ownership and executive ranks dropping, not surprisingly, black-themed shows are falling as well.
". . . the two most prominent factors that brought brother [Barack] Obama to the White House were information communication and technology, or 'ICT,' which Obama deployed brilliantly to mobilize his ethnic base. Yet as he himself has recognized, the most powerful tools of the modern world - again, ICT - are not getting into the hands of the most dispossessed, who need to use them to improve their lives with better education, better jobs and better citizenship.
". . . the first digital divide was about access to and consumption of the Internet, the World Wide Web and multiple 'cool' applications. Today, the second digital divide is about access to the senior positions and financial capital that would make media content more relevant to more Americans. . . ."
Garrett Johnson, Black Enterprise: All-Star to Tech Star: Why Black Athletes Need to Get in the Startup Game
Tracey Ross, Ebony: Diversity in Tech and the Myth of Meritocracy
Doug George-Kanentiio, an Akwesasne Mohawk and co-founder of the Native American Journalists Association, explained the origin of the term "Redskin" in a message this month to the Cooperstown Central School District in New York.
". . . Altogether, the Mohawk Nation lost over 9,000,000 acres of land, an area which includes Cooperstown and all of the Adirondacks. This was done without our consent. In order to rationalize the theft of the land falsehoods were created which de-humanized our people. We were no longer friends but demons. We were labeled as savages and cannibals, warlike primitives without intellect. Among the most tragic of profanes were those books used in schools, which grossly distorted our history and passed on terrible lies about us.
"The use of 'redskins' was among the worse of these labels. That word originally referred to the Beothuks of Newfoundland, a peaceful people who colored their skin with red ochre as adornment and to keep the mosquitoes at bay. Their passivity was mistaken for weakness and after the waves of European diseases killed most of them those who survived were hunted and murdered for sport. By 1830 they were extinct. One of the reprehensible tactics was to remove the skins of the Beothuks and use them as covers for books and as leggings for the hunters.
"This act of skinning Native people, both men and women, continued on along the frontier. It was an act of terror meant to instill fear and drive the Natives from coveted lands. It was justified by these stereotypes that were highly effective in undermining the dignity, pride and self-assurance of our people. We are, among all peoples in this hemisphere, the most misunderstood, the most libeled and the most despised because of the lies in the media, in popular literature and, sadly, in the schools. . . . "
LZ Granderson, ESPN: Prompting mascot change
Askia Muhammad, Washington Informer: The Black-Indian Question
S.E. Ruckman, Native American Times: Confessions of a Washington Redskin
Dan Steinberg, Washington Post: When Tony Kornheiser wrote about the Redskins nickname
"On Friday, President Obama spoke in Chicago as a part of his post-State of the Union tour, pitching, among many things, a call to Congress to bring up votes aimed at stemming gun violence," Tanveer Ali reported Monday for the Columbia Journalism Review.
"The speech took place at a school two miles from his own home and just slightly [farther] away from a park where 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton was shot dead in January, a week after performing at Obama's inauguration.
". . . in the days that followed her shooting, coverage of gun violence in Chicago has focused on the day-to-day of Hadiya's case -- the shooting to the funeral to the arrest to looking at how the White House would respond. Journalists should work to continue this sort of coverage, bringing out the human side to future homicide statistics. By making relatability a mission, journalists would be able to bring more of the public into the debate about what can be done to curb the shootings.
"The media's current default reporting focuses on statistics, rather than individuals. . . ."
James E. Causey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Wake-up call was needed, and a KKK outfit was the jolt
George E. Curry, National Newspaper Publishers Association: White House Aide: Obama Hasn't Abandoned Blacks
Jarvis DeBerry, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune: Reducing gun violence, drug sentences and police brutality . . .
Courtland Milloy, Washington Post: If President Obama addressed black America, would he cite a 'travesty'?
Mary Mitchell, Chicago Sun-Times (free registration required): President Obama touts fatherhood as a way to curb violence
Mary Mitchell, Chicago Sun-Times (free registration required): Mitchell: President gives families of violence a reason to hope
Jack Mirkinson, Huffington Post: White House Press Corps: 'Extreme Frustration' With Lack Of Obama Access
Clarence Page, Chicago Tribune: Boys in the back of the class
Mary Sanchez, Kansas City Star: Preschool is an investment in America
Dawn Turner Trice, Chicago Tribune: In face-to-face with president, young men had nation's attention
Gregory Wallace and Adam Aigner-Treworgy, CNN: Chicago students see a guide in President Obama
". . . If you haven't seen the photographs for Beyoncé's new world tour, you probably wouldn't even recognize her," Ernest Owens, a communication and public service major at the University of Pennsylvania, wrote Thursday for the Grio. His piece was headlined, "Beyonce, Colorism, and Why All of This Needs to End in 2013."
"Go on her official Facebook page or website and you will see an image of what looks like a Victorian white woman in the Elizabethan era. Her (prosthetic) blonde hair puffed and extended to reveal a face that is almost as white as snow. Lips red and her skin powdered. This is not the same bronze Beyonce that I saw rocking the stage in an all female band with her darker Destiny's Child counterparts.
"I was only left with memories of previous patterns that the multi-Grammy award winning artist had done in previous years in regards to her skin. And I asked myself the question: why, Bey?
"Let's not act like this is something new. Over the years, it seems as though Beyonce has gotten lighter as she has gotten older. . . . What does this say about our society for black women?
"It tells me that in 2013, an independent, confident and successful woman of color still struggles to have the confidence to fully embrace the skin she is in. If one of the most powerful women in entertainment feels she has to lighten her skin for projection, what does that say for the rest of us? . . ."
Meanwhile, Jenice Armstrong wrote Monday in the Philadelphia Daily News about Myra Boulware and Dana Winsley, a former stay-at-home mom and stay-at-home grandmom who are striking gold selling Beyoncé-style hair to black women, average sale $300 to $1,000.
"She and her mother began frequenting hair events such as last July's Barber Wars International in Philadelphia and the renowned Bronner Bros. International Hair Show in Atlanta, where they stumbled across a supplier specializing in dark, natural Eurasian hair that hair didn't shed or tangle. Everywhere Boulware went, her long, lush locks attracted compliments. . . . "
"Yvette Cabrera, former columnist and investigative reporter for the Orange County Register, will join a dynamic team of reporters being assembled by executive editor Joe Donnelly for a startup journalism project called Mission and State, formerly known as the Santa Barbara Investigative Journalism Initiative," the project announced Thursday.
"The project was created late last year through a Knight Foundation grant awarded to the Santa Barbara Foundation and supported by matching grants from several local foundations and individuals. Mission and State will operate under the umbrella of the not-for-profit Miller-McCune Center for Research, Media and Public Policy. . . ."
Donnelly, formerly deputy editor of the LA Weekly, said in a release, "A close-knit, civic-minded community such as Santa Barbara that also faces serious questions about wealth disparity, services, environmental issues, immigration and education is a perfect place to explore how to deliver nuanced, narrative journalism digitally. We're hoping we can be at the forefront of forging an enhanced online journalism experience. But you have to get great stories first and I'm confident this team is more than up to the task. I am particularly pleased to have two of our four staffers with Santa Barbara roots and that all are from this region."
"The Florida Center for Investigative Reporting and the University of Miami School of Communication announce a new partnership that will train students to produce in-depth, hard-hitting reports and lead to the production of more investigative stories and news content," the center said Monday. "FCIR, which moved to its new headquarters at UM's School of Communication in January, will remain independent from the school. The FCIR-UM partnership includes an investigative internship program for journalism students in the School of Communication's Department of Journalism & Media Management and collaborations with students from the School of Law, whose casework could lead to stories that expose injustice. . . ."
"The Robert R. McCormick Foundation awarded DePaul University's journalism program Pasos al Futuro, a summer journalism workshop that encourages Latino high school students to pursue careers in journalism, with the largest grant -- $120,000 -- the College of Communication has ever received," Anne Malina reported Monday in The DePaulia, the student newspaper.
"Fox today announced a transformative new partnership with the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) designed to further the development of diverse voices across the company's entertainment businesses," the company announced Thursday. "The FOX/HBCU Media Alliance (FHMA) will bring HBCU students, faculty and alumni together with executives from Fox's media and entertainment businesses in an effort to build a stronger pipeline for students interested in pursuing careers in the film and television industry and advance the careers of HBCU alumni working in media and entertainment across the Fox businesses. . . ."
Discussing the disproportionate coverage given missing white children vs. missing children of color, Sonia Ayanna Stovall, a Yahoo! contributor and senior examiner for the federal government, wrote Sunday in the Denver Post, ". . . There are so many factors involved in how a missing child case will play out, the lack of national media coverage is only one part of the problem. The real question is how to create a structure in which the media can play a positive and contributory role to effectively disseminate information about the plight of any child snatched from safety. . . . "
". . . the shooting of Reeva Steenkamp by South Africa's star runner Oscar Pistorius may open a window on some of the darker facts of life for so many South Africans, women in particular," Charlayne Hunter-Gault wrote Saturday for the New Yorker. "(Pistorius is being charged with premeditated murder, a charge his family has denied on his behalf, without offering an explanation of how he came to shoot her; he has yet to enter a plea.) In South Africa, many, if not most, women have experienced domestic abuse; many of them live with it on a routine basis, with very little recourse and no headlines about their fate. . . . " Pistorius "told a packed courtroom Tuesday that he shot his girlfriend to death by mistake, thinking she was a robber. The prosecutor called it premeditated murder," CBS News reported. [Updated Feb. 19.]
"It's maybe not how most people would choose to spend their birthday, but Twitter's manager of journalism and news, Mark Luckie, was rewarded for showing up to Columbia Journalism School's Social Media Weekend when his audience sang to him," Hazel Sheffield reported Monday for Columbia Journalism Review. "During the rendition of 'Happy Birthday,' the weekend's host, Columbia Chief Digital Officer Sree Sreenivasan, snapped a six-second video using Vine, Twitter's new video-sharing app. . . ."
"The results of a new poll might give Geraldo Rivera pause as he decides whether to run for Senate in New Jersey," the Huffington Post reported on Thursday. "The Fox News host recently announced that he is exploring a potential Senate bid. A poll by Monmouth University, released Thursday, found that only 26% of New Jersey voters would vote for Rivera. Meanwhile, almost two-thirds (65 percent) of voters said that they are not likely to vote for Rivera. That includes 51 percent who said that they would not consider voting for Rivera at all. . . ."
The South Asian Journalists Association has extended until March 15 its SAJA Broadcast Challenge, in which current and former broadcast journalists will match all donations made, up to a total of $10,000. So far, $2,079 has been collected, according to the SAJA web site. The original end date was Feb. 1.
The Aerogram has debuted, describing itself as a "U.S.-based online magazine offering a South Asian perspective. Founded by three former contributors to Sepia Mutiny, The Aerogram seeks to engage anyone interested in South Asian culture across the globe with a curated take on art, literature, life and news. . . ."
". . . what do a majority of Americans think about Indian-Americans? Unfortunately, their entire perception of our community is formulated and created through mainstream media," Pari Mathur, founder of Paridym Pictures, wrote last week for the Huffington Post. "So forget running a billion dollar hedge fund, Mr. Indian-American. To most, you're just a dude who bobbles his head with a mustache, because that's what they've seen on TV. The fact is, we are going back in time and oppressing ourselves. . . . " Mathur attacked the problem with humor, accompanying his essay with three comedic videos.
"Conservative columnist John David Dyche will no longer write for The Courier-Journal after the newspaper rejected a piece he'd written that suggested reforms to the editorial page and that the paper disclose political affiliations of editors and reporters . . ., " Joseph Lord wrote Friday for WFPL-FM public radio in Louisville, Ky.
Radio producer Dean Rotbart offered advice to public relations people on Talking Biz News that many journalists would second. "Although I don't keep formal statistics on the results of my outbound calls, I would guess that roughly 50 percent of the time when a release does catch my attention, the 'contact' person listed on the paid news release is not available when I call. That is particularly vexing, since I typically phone on the same day, and often within minutes, of when the news release crosses the public relations newswire. . . . If you're going to issue a national news release on a given day, why not actually be at your desk to respond to media inquiries -- if you're lucky enough to receive some?"
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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 POTUS spoke against gun violence at Chicago's Hyde Park Academy on Friday.
"President Barack Obama returned to Chicago for a few hours Friday to address the high-profile gun violence that continues to plague his hometown and suggested the solution is not only more gun laws, but community intervention and economic opportunity in impoverished neighborhoods," John Byrne and Dahleen Glanton reported Friday for the Chicago Tribune.
"The president didn't delve into his specific call for an assault weapons ban and other gun control measures, instead choosing to illustrate Chicago's plight by comparing it to the December elementary school massacre in Newtown, Conn., where 20 children and six adults were shot. . . ."
Obama was responding not only to local residents but also to commentators who urged a personal visit by the president. Last weekend, first lady Michelle Obama attended the Chicago funeral of 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton, a baton twirler who participated last month in Obama's inauguration. She was shot and killed on Jan. 29 not far from the Obamas' Chicago residence after being caught in the crossfire between two rival gangs. Her parents attended Tuesday's State of the Union address.
". . . Obama's Chicago, our Chicago, is unhinged now, and rightly embarrassed," Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page wrote on Wednesday. "The street slaughter won't subside. . . ."
On Friday, Darlene Superville wrote for the Associated Press, "Obama sought support for proposals, unveiled this week in his State of the Union address, to increase the federal minimum wage and ensure every child can attend preschool. He also pitched plans to pair businesses with recession-battered communities to help them rebuild and provide job training. . . ."
Glanton prepared for the Obama visit by interviewing a dozen teenage African American boys at the Salvation Army's Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center, youths "most likely to be hit by the gunfire that occurs almost daily in neighborhoods like Roseland, Englewood and Lawndale." They told Glanton that Obama can have little effect on gangs.
". . . While all of the young men at the community center said they had respect for the first African-American president, they noted that it would be difficult for anyone to penetrate the culture of violence," Glanton wrote.
" 'People look up to Mr. Obama more than he knows, but the one thing they need is their guns,' said Latwon Rufus, 18. 'It's about revenge, reputation and territory. That's the city of Chicago.' "
In Washington, White House aides met with six black journalists Thursday to preview the "Ladder of Opportunity" proposals President Obama planned to discuss in Chicago Friday, and the journalists left impressed.
"I've attended every White House round table for black journalists since President Obama took office and this was the most engaging, and candid session yet," Michael H. Cottman of Black America Web told Journal-isms by email. "It signals, perhaps, a sea change in the way the White House plans to approach initiatives for black Americans during the next four years. The word 'black' is mentioned proudly and that didn't go unnoticed in our session. Valerie Jarrett said the White House will do a better job communicating its policies to African Americans and I believe that effort started with our interview this week."
Joining Cottman were George E. Curry, editor of the National Newspaper Publishers Association News Service; Jenée Desmond-Harris of the Root; freelancer Steven Gray; Leroy Jones Jr. of radio's syndicated "The PoliticalJones Show"; and Joyce Jones of Black Entertainment Television and Black Enterprise magazine.
They were briefed by Jarrett, senior adviser to the president; Cecilia Muñoz, director of the White House Domestic Policy Council; Danielle Grey, assistant to the president and Cabinet secretary; and Racquel Russell, deputy assistant to the president for urban affairs and economic mobility.
"I found all of the administration officials to be candid and very receptive to our questions," Desmond-Harris said. "Very helpful. Lots of insights," Gray said.
Curry said by email, "I agree with Michael that Valerie addressed the 'Why doesn't the president do more for Black folk?' question head-on. While the president has not moved from his rising tide lifts all boats approach, the White House seems intent on doing a better job of explaining how its policies and programs directly benefit African Americans."
Paul Farhi wrote in the Washington Post this week, "Obama has never consented to an interview with any member of the National Newspaper Publishers Association, an organization consisting of 210 African-American-owned newspapers, said Robert W. Bogle, the organization's former president."
"That criticism remains," Curry told Journal-isms by email. "I reminded Valerie after the meeting that we still want an opportunity to interview the president and said she is aware of our request but made no promises.
Asked whether meeting with the White House aides counts, Curry replied, "African Americans did not vote for his aides — we voted for him. We deserve to hear answers directly from the president rather than from his intermediaries. If President Obama can speak exclusively to the Latino media, as he has done on more than one occasion, and boldly advocate on behalf of gays and lesbians — and no one is suggesting that he should not have taken those actions — he should be willing to speak directly to the nation's Black newspapers.
"Valerie said the administration hasn't communicated its message as well as it should and I agree. This would be an excellent opportunity to correct that mistake."
"The Bangor Daily News has rescinded its request for records about concealed weapon permit holders in the state of Maine," Anthony Ronzio, the paper's director of news and new media, wrote Friday. "We have informed the agencies who received our request to disregard it. We've informed the agencies who have responded that their records will be destroyed.
"We are disappointed with the reaction to our request, which we felt was with the best intentions to help study issues affecting Maine through an analysis of publicly available data. We will continue our reporting, but will use other sources of information to do so."
Ronzio added, ". . . The BDN never would have published personally identifying information of any permit holder in Maine, as a newspaper in New York had done," but said there were ". . . concerns about the concealed weapons permits process. Some callers to the BDN spoke of long delays in the review of applications. . . ."
Meanwhile, the Virginia state Senate voted 32-8 Thursday to bar circuit court clerks from disclosing to the public the names of people who have concealed handgun permits, Andrew Cain and Jim Nolan reported for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. The bill goes to Gov. Bob McDonnell (R).
Jenice Armstrong, Philadelphia Daily News: Shocking blacks into action against violence
Tenisha Taylor Bell, CNN.com: Chicago's violence took my dad, friends
Esther J. Cepeda, Washington Post Writers Group: When violence hits a nerve
Steve Chapman, Chicago Tribune: The full truth about the Second Amendment
Ta-Nehisi Coates blog, the Atlantic: The Social Trends Driving American Gangs and Gun Violence
Michael H. Cottman, Black America Web: Obama Promotes New Plan For Black Neighborhoods, Mentors Young Black Men
Cleopatra Cowley-Pendleton with Michel Martin, "Tell Me More," NPR: Pain Is 'Indescribable' For Gun Victim Pendleton's Mother
Stanley Crouch, Daily News, New York: Ignorance kills, education heals: Poor schools are a scourge as grave as gun violence
George Curry, National Newspaper Publishers Association: African-American teens, gun violence and the specter of empty rhetoric (Feb. 13)
Fannie Flono, Charlotte (N.C.) Observer: Preschool benefits students and N.C.
Keith Harriston, Washington Post: President Obama and Jay-Z: strange bedfellows during gun ban debate
Michael P. Jeffries, the Atlantic: Obama's Chicago Speech Can't Address Gun Violence Unless It Takes on Race
Merrill Knox, TVSpy: Bonten Stations to Air Series on Gun Violence
Geraldo Rivera, Fox News Latino: Trayvon and Hadiya (Feb. 8)
Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: Obama, winning the argument
Michael Shepherd, Portland (Maine) Press Herald: Bangor newspaper's request for gun data causes uproar (Feb. 14)
Nolan Strong, allhiphop.com: Chicago Police Says Gang Involved In Hadiya Pendleton Murder Named After Lil Wayne Lyric
California authorities now say Christopher Jordan Dorner, the fugitive ex-cop, killed himself as the cabin in which he was barricaded caught fire after a shootout with officers. His saga left some commentators struggling Friday to explain why some considered the killer of four, including two police officers, a martyr.
For those concerned about open government, the case "underscores yet again why transparency in officer misconduct cases is needed," the Los Angeles Times said in a headline above an editorial on Tuesday.
"A group of panelists on CNN tried to make sense of the phenomenon this afternoon," Tim Hains wrote Wednesday for Real Clear Politics.
" 'This has been an important conversation that we’ve had about police brutality, about police corruption, about state violence,' said Huffington Post Live host and Columbia University professor Marc Lamont Hill.
" 'They were even talking about making him the first domestic drone target. This is serious business here. I don't think it's been a waste of time at all. And as far as Dorner himself goes, he’s been like a real life superhero to many people. Now don't get me wrong. What he did was awful, killing innocent people was bad, but when you read his manifesto, when you read the message that he left, he wasn’t entirely crazy. He had a plan and a mission here. And many people aren't rooting for him to kill innocent people. They are rooting for somebody who was wronged to get a kind of revenge against the system. It's almost like watching Django Unchained in real life. It's kind of exciting.' "
Not to Ta-Nehisi Coates, who wrote Thursday on his blog for the Atlantic, "I don't really know how anyone, with any sort of coherence, adopts Christopher Dorner as a symbol in the fight against police brutality, given how he brutalized those two human beings. "I cannot understand, except to say that sometimes our own anger, our pain, becomes so blinding that we fail to see the pain of others. This is the seed of inhumanity, and inhumanity is the seed of the very police brutality which we all deplore."
Donner's online manifesto charged the LAPD with mistreating him and sanctioning racism, the L.A. Times recalled.
". . . Police disciplinary boards, where the most serious charges of misconduct are considered, were open to the public for years, and that helped the Los Angeles Police Department on its long trip back from ignominy to esteem," the Times editorial said. "Their closure in recent years, as well as the department's refusal to release the names of officers involved in shootings, threatens to undermine that slowly recovering public confidence.
" . . . L.A. has been reminded in the starkest terms that the price of closure is not just inconvenience for journalists; it's the threat that the public won't trust the institutions protected by such secrecy."
Karen Grigsby Bates with Michel Martin, "Tell Me More," NPR: Why Do People Sympathize With Christopher Dorner?
Jasmyne A. Cannick, EURWeb: Retired LAPD Sgt. Cheryl Dorsey: The Stress on Officers isn’t the Public, it’s the Department
David Cay Johnston, Salon: LAPD’s indefensible Dorner pursuit
Demetria L. Lucas, Clutch magazine: Do You Trust Reporters During Breaking News?
Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: No way to twist Dorner's story positively
Geraldo Rivera, Fox News Latino: Sympathy for the Devil? Don't Buy into Dorner's Campaign of Spite and Deceit
Joel Rubin and Andrew Blankstein, Los Angeles Times: In wake of Dorner shootout, questions over use of 'the burner'
"The icy, hot Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue has prompted some controversy," Ann Oldenburg reported Thursday for USA Today.
"No, no one's complaining about Kate Upton's curves (that we know of, anyway).
"Jezebel.com stirred up chatter this week by pointing out that the issue features models posing with 'natives.' Writer Dodai Stewart goes on to say that 'using people of color as background or extras is a popular fashion trope, whether it's Nylon magazine, the Free People catalogue, British Vogue or J.Crew. But although it's prevalent, it's very distasteful.' She adds: 'People are not props.' "
SI swimsuit issue editor MJ Day replied, ". . . We pick these locations very specifically. That is because we can show people the world. How much of the population can access areas of the world we can access? We feel beauty exists on all levels as well. The beauty is in the people and the places. We want to immerse you as a viewer in these situations." Of the controversy, she dismissed it, saying, "There's nothing to it."
The National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association is challenging a style memo from the Associated Press on same-sex marriage partners.
". . . What is troubling is the final sentence in the memo: 'Generally AP uses couples or partners to describe people in civil unions or same-sex marriages,' " Jen Christensen, NLGJA president, said in a letter Thursday to David Minthorn, editor of The Associated Press Stylebook.
"Such guidance may be appropriate for referring to people in civil unions, for which there are no established terms and the language is still evolving, but it suggests a double standard for same-sex individuals in legally recognized marriages. One has to assume that AP would never suggest that the default term should be 'couples' or 'partners' when describing people in opposite-sex marriages. We strongly encourage you to revise the style advisory to make it clear that writers should use the same terms for married individuals, whether they are in a same-sex or opposite-sex marriage. . . . "
Meanwhile, Linda Johnson Rice, chairman of Johnson Publishing Co., which produces Ebony and Jet magazines, endorsed same-sex marriage in an op-ed piece Thursday in the Chicago Tribune.
Chicago's WMAQ-TV reported, "The Illinois Senate advanced a bill legalizing same-sex marriage Thursday, voting 34-21-2 in favor of the measure. . . . Gov. Pat Quinn has already said he will sign the bill once it passes. The House still needs to pass the bill. . . ."
Johnson Rice wrote, ". . . My family has always made Chicago our home, and I care deeply about the values our company has espoused for decades. Fairness and equality means that what you are never limits who you can be. . . ."
Michael Paul Williams, Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch: Anti-gay bigotry is bad for business.
"The popularity of Twitter and Instagram among blacks in American is surging, while white women under 50 continue to pin away on Pinterest, according to a demographic survey released Thursday," Roger Yu reported Thursday for USA Today.
"The survey, by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project, also confirmed what parents of college students already know — 83% [of] Internet users ages 18 to 29 use social media.
". . . Asian Americans weren't included in the Pew study because there were not enough respondents to draw statistically reliable conclusions.
"Among the Pew findings:
"Twitter, Instagram are popular among blacks. Among black Internet users, 26% use Twitter, far outpacing whites (14%) and Hispanics (19%). In August 2011, 18% of black Internet users were using Twitter. . . ."
It's a growing trend in the television business: holders of separate TV licenses agree to share news or other departments. When the decision to share is made, it can lead to the elimination of the entire staff of one of the stations, as happened in Tucson, Ariz., in 2011.
These arrangements are called "shared services agreements" and "joint sales agreements."
They coexist with a more stubborn trend: Reporting on broadcast ownership, the Federal Communications Commission reported in November that while station ownership by whites increased, the minority numbers were declining. Blacks went from owning 1 percent of all commercial TV stations in 2009 to just 0.7 percent in 2011. Asian ownership slipped from 0.8 percent in 2009 to 0.5 percent in 2011. Latino ownership increased slightly from 2.5 percent to 2.9 percent.
As the CommLawBlog points out in defining "shared services agreements" and "joint sales agreements," "To some, they’re a godsend, sustaining stations that would otherwise be dead-and-gone. To others, they’re an anti-diversity scourge, a disingenuous device reflecting all that is wrong with Big Media Consolidation. . . ."
On Friday, Harry A. Jessell, a longtime observer of the television business and publisher of TVNewsCheck, endorsed "an idea floating around Washington" intended to make both diversity advocates and television station owners happy.
"Broadcasters eager to double up in markets often bring in third parties and help them buy stations in the markets with the intention of operating them under JSAs and SSAs. The help usually comes in the form of loans or loan guarantees.
"The idea is that the FCC would say that JSAs and SSAs are allowable only if the third parties are minorities and women. This would act as a powerful incentive for broadcasters to seek out such partners rather than the assortment of mostly white men we have today. . . . "
FCC commissioner Mignon Clyburn, who has been pushing for greater minority ownership and is the first African American woman on the FCC), ". . . has a real opportunity here to increase ownership by segments of our society that were not just disadvantaged, but essentially shut out from getting a broadcast license in the days when they were available for the asking," Jessell wrote.
Peter B Collins, Truthout: An Insider's View of the Progressive Talk Radio Devolution
"Facebook Inc., operator of the world's largest social-networking service, is seeking a global head of diversity, as the quickly expanding company’s recruits people from different backgrounds to foster creativity," Brian Womack reported Wednesday for Bloomberg Businessweek.
". . . The extraordinary pace and scale of globalization have led visionary multinationals to evolve dramatically, to broadly redefine diversity and raise it to a higher global level than ever before," Edward Iwata wrote Wednesday for the Seattle Times. ". . . The cross-border diversity practices of multinationals such as AT&T, American Express, IBM, Intel, Cisco Systems, Procter & Gamble — plus Washington-based Microsoft, Starbucks, Weyerhaeuser, Amazon.com and others — are changing the corporate world in modern and emerging countries alike. Intel executive Rosalind Hudnell calls it 'the new calculus of diversity.' . . . "
Writing about rapper Lil Wayne's widely condemned description of sex as "beating it up like Emmett Till," columnist Jarvis DeBerry of NOLA.com and the Times-Picayune in New Orleans ". . . wondered if I'd think differently of it if had been spoken by an artist I like." He cited "So Fresh, So Clean," a 2000 release by Outkast, which included the lines, "You're so Anne Frank. / Let's hit the attic to hide out for 'bout two weeks. . . "
"For over a decade, the Arab television broadcaster Al-Jazeera was widely respected for providing an independent voice from the Middle East. Recently, however, several top journalists have left, saying the station has developed a clear political agenda," Alexander Kühn, Christoph Reuter and Gregor Peter Schmitz wrote for Germany's Spiegel. ". . . Since the Arab Spring, though, many former dissidents have risen to power across the region — and these fledgling leaders often show little respect for democratic principles. Al-Jazeera, however, has shamelessly fawned upon the new rulers. . . ."
"The Maryland Court of Appeals has ruled that redacted state police records of racial profiling complaints can be made public under the state’s Public Information Act (PIA)," Kathleen Kirby wrote Feb. 3 for the Radio Television Digital News Association. "The case is significant because it dismisses the notion that certain categories of records exempt from disclosure cannot be redacted and released. . . ." RTDNA joined other news organizations in filing a friend-of-the-court brief.
Herman Cain, the former Republican presidential candidate, is Fox News' newest contributor, the network announced on Friday, the Huffington Post reported. "Cain will contribute analysis and commentary on Fox News, as well as Fox Business Network. . . ."
"As K-State celebrates its 150th year, many in the community are taking a closer look at its past," Melvin Fatimehin and Jakki Thompson wrote Friday for the Collegian at Kansas State University. "One piece of K-State’s long history is the Uhuru, a newspaper originally created by the Black Student Union for African-American students at K-State, which has made its return to the K-State campus with a modern twist. . . . "
". . . A new study from the University of Missouri School of Journalism shows that American newspapers, and specifically newspapers geared toward an African-American audience, frame stories on obesity in a negative way," Nathan Hurst wrote for the university. Researcher Hyunmin Lee reported, "Our study shows that the majority of obesity news stories are written in a negative tone, mainly attributing individual responsibilities to overcome obesity, which means many African Americans in need of weight loss could be discouraged by what they are reading in newspapers, instead of being inspired by positive success stories about overcoming obesity or other health problems. . . .”
Eva Coleman, media technology teacher at the Career and Technical Education Center in the Frisco, Texas, Independent School District, has been selected as Teacher of the Year by the Student Television Network, the network said this week. Long active in the National Association of Black Journalists, Coleman is vice president of the Dallas-Fort Worth Association of Black Journalists and volunteers with the NABJ High School Journalism Workshop.
In Newport News, Va., "Alveta Ewell, who has anchored newscasts at WAVY-TV for almost a quarter-century, announced her retirement on Wednesday night, the Daily Press reported Thursday. " Ewell, whose 30-year career in Hampton Roads also includes time on the radio and at WVEC-TV, will do her last newscast on Feb. 26. . . . "
". . . On Monday, February 11, 2013, Ebony Magazine published a freelance environmental science piece by Dr. Marshall Shepard: Are African-Americans More Vulnerable to Climate Change? AND the digital editors seem very interested in more science-related pitches," DNLee blogged Thursday for Scientific American. "Until we get more professional science writers to pitch to media outlets like Ebony, scientists who communicate will have to fill the gap. So, please, please, please submit your pitches, everyone and anyone. . . . "
Reporting on the annual "State of Indian Nations" report by Jefferson Keel, president of the National Congress of American Indians, writer Mark Trahant noted Thursday, ". . . Indian Country has something that the rest of the country is missing: Young people . . . . Except. This advantage is coming at the same time as this massive wave called austerity is hitting. . . . I still think this is a moment of real possibility. A serious moment of possibility. But that success will come from tribes finding every dollar [they] can and investing it in young people. This is the future, not the Congress, especially a Congress with factions bent on intergenerational destruction."
At Marquette University, "While preparing for graduation, Marissa Evans, senior in the College of Communication and president of the Marquette chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists, is hoping to fill an underrepresented part of media discussion," Emily Wright reported Thursday for the Marquette Tribune. "Last month, Evans launched InHue, an online magazine that focuses on health issues for women of color.
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.
The drama involved the classic plot of a rogue cop trying to clear his name.
"With elements echoing many of the fixtures of Hollywood's fictional crime tales, Tuesday's showdown with real-life fugitive Christopher Dorner brought the conflicting agendas of law enforcement and the media into sharp relief, spotlighting the challenges -- and pitfalls -- of such immersive live coverage," AJ Marechal reported Tuesday for Variety.
"Uncensored obscenities made it on the air, phone conversations interrupted live coverage and journalists were asked by authorities to restrict their coverage to avoid tipping off the suspect.
"The confrontation featured aspects that viewers have seen often in the reporting of real-life incidents (swarms of helicopters, roadside checkpoints) as well as fictional onscreen tales ranging from 'The Negotiator' and 'The Fugitive' to 'High Sierra,' (rogue cops seeking to clear their name, a multi-jurisdictional manhunt playing out in a remote locale). . . . "
The Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday, "Charred human remains have been found in the burned cabin where police believe fugitive ex-cop Christopher Dorner was holed up after trading gunfire with law enforcement, authorities said.
"If the body is identified to be Dorner’s, the standoff would end a weeklong manhunt for the ex-LAPD officer and Navy Reserve lieutenant who is believed to be responsible for a string of revenge-fueled shootings following his firing by the Los Angeles Police Department several years ago. Four people have died, allegedly at Dorner’s hands. . . ."
The saga was fraught with racial implications. "Fugitive and suspected murderer Christopher Dorner may have been found dead in a burned-out cabin in Big Bear, Calif., on Tuesday evening, ending a weeklong manhunt," Hillary Crosley wrote Wednesday for the Root. "However, for many the story of the former Los Angeles police officer and Navy reservist gone rogue isn't a clear-cut one of death and destruction, but rather of race, police brutality and the blue wall of silence. . . . "
Coverage bumped up against President Obama's State of the Union message. Wayne Bennett, who blogs as the Field Negro, wrote Wednesday, "As one of my tweeter fam said, it's the 'state of the Dorner coverage' on the news tonight. Sorry Mr. President, but this is like a real live Hollywood movie playing itself out in SoCal.
"I know that a lot of my cousins are cheering for Dorner because dude is getting Robin Hood love from certain quarters, but I hope that these folks remember that he started his killing spree by killing a brotha. . . ."
Caitlin Dickson, Daily Beast: Carter Evans, the Reporter Caught in the Christopher Dorner Crossfire
Merrill Knox, TVSpy: LA Stations Pivot From Dorner Coverage to State of the Union
Kevin Roderick, LAObserved: Weird story o' the day: Dorner's mom at bar watching standoff
The two best-known Spanish-language networks, Univision and Telemundo, decided to air novelas instead of President Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday, and Univision was rewarded with a ratings victory.
"On a night littered with reruns leading into the State of the Union address, there was only one original show on the Big Four networks," Toni Fitzgerald wrote Wednesday for Media Life Magazine.
"That paved the way for a rare weeknight victory for Univision, which also won every hour of the evening with its original telenovelas." Fitzgerald cautioned that the figures could change later in the day.
The audience for the State of the Union speech was split among the various networks that carried it.
CNN en Español, a third Spanish-language network, did carry the speech live. It was followed by a Republican response from Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, who had also prepared a Spanish-language version of his remarks. "Actually we [pre-empted] our 9 pm show called Cala. We aired it on CNN en Español and on CNN Latino," spokeswoman Isabel Bucaram told Journal-isms by email.
Representatives of Univision and NBC-owned Telemundo were quick to point out that they carried the annual presidential address on other platforms.
"We aired the State of the Union and the response live on Galavision (this is the second year we do this) and then re-aired both later on Univision, in addition to streaming both the State of the Union and the response," Monica Talan, senior vice president of corporate communications and public relations at Univision, told Journal-isms by email. Cable, which carries Galavision, has a fraction of the audience of broadcast television, which transmits Univision.
Asked the reason for not pre-empting the telenovelas on the main Univision channel, Talan replied, "This the second consecutive year we aired on the #1 Spanish-language cable network and later on the Univision Network."
Camilo Pino, a spokeswoman for Telemundo, which aired the telenova "La Patrona," emailed, "We video-streamed both speeches at Telemundo.com. President Obama's SOTU was dubbed in Spanish. Rubio's was the one he originally delivered in Spanish. We also showed highlights from both speeches last night on a special news program from D.C. hosted by Jose Díaz-Balart ('Estado de la Nación' at 11:35pm/10:35 c). 'Estado de la Nación' featured commentary and analysis by Representatives Luis Gutiérrez (D-IL) and Ileana Ross Lehtinen (R-FL) as well as reactions by young 'dreamers.' By the way, we also had Rubio on our morning show today."
Meanwhile, members of the media said that Obama delivered an “effective” State of the Union address that ended with an emotional turn with an emphasis on gun violence, Mackenzie Weinger reported for Politico.
According to a CNN/ORC International poll, 53 percent of viewers had a "very positive" reaction to the Obama speech, 24 percent said they had a "somewhat positive response" and 22 percent said they experienced a negative response, Politico's Katie Glueck reported.
Lawrence D. Bobo, the Root: Rubio Repeats a Failed Message
Ta-Nehisi Coates blog, the Atlantic: The Art of Infinite War
Michael H. Cottman, Black America Web: Obama Highlights Urban Gun Violence On National Stage
Merlene Davis, Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader: Don't give us special rights, give us equal rights
William Douglas and Franco Ordonez, McClatchy Newspapers: Many African-Americans concerned about Obama's focus on immigrant rights (Feb. 11)
John Eggerton, Broadcasting & Cable: SOTU: Gun Violence Plan Makes No Mention of Entertainment
Sam Fulwood III, Center for American Progress: Black Immigration Views Too Often Ignore Fact and History
Emil Guillermo blog, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund: A hopeful State of the Union -- upstaged by the manhunt for Christopher Dorner
Jack Mirkinson, Huffington Post: Touré: Drone Critics 'Getting A Little Soft,' 'Defending Civil Liberties Of Al Qaeda Members' (VIDEO)
Leonard Pitts Jr., Miami Herald: Can GOP end the 'carnival of the crazy'?
Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: A visual statement of progress, followed by the same old story
Janell Ross, HuffPost LatinoVoices: Watching State Of The Union 2013, New York Immigrants Hope Congress Really Heard Obama
Jack White, the Root: Rubio's Big Moment Fizzles
"Time Warner is in talks to shed much of Time Inc., the country's largest magazine publisher and the foundation on which the $49 billion media conglomerate was built, according to people involved in the negotiations," Amy Chozick and Michael J. De La Merced reported Wednesday for the New York Times.
"Time Warner is in early discussions with the Meredith Corporation to put most of Time Inc.'s magazines -- including People, InStyle and Real Simple -- into a separate, publicly traded company that would also include Meredith titles like Better Homes and Gardens and Ladies' Home Journal."
Time Inc. is also the parent company of Essence magazine, the leading magazine for African American women; and People en Español, which launched in 1998, the result of suggestions from Latino employees of Time Inc. Essence debuted in 1970 under black ownership. In 2005 Time Inc., which had acquired 49 percent of Essence Communications, bought the rest of the company.
While Meredith does not publish any titles targeting African Americans, it has created Meredith Hispanic Ventures, which produces the successful Ser Padres and Siempre Mujer magazines. Last year Ser Padres, a parenting publication, increased its advertising pages by 28.8 percent while most other magazines were losing pages.
Lucia Moses, Adweek: Meredith, Time Inc.: A Comparison (Feb. 14)
Roman Catholic worshippers and clergy in Africa and Latin America, where the church is rapidly growing, greeted Monday's news of Pope Benedict XVI's impending retirement with surprise, respect, and a question: Could the next pontiff be from their continent? Jon Gambrell wrote Tuesday for the Associated Press.
Some African Americans and Latinos wondered the same thing, including two journalists-turned-clergy members who shared their thoughts with Journal-isms.
". . . the catholic church's biggest areas of growth and numbers are in south america and africa," the Rev. M. Dion Thompson, a former reporter at the Baltimore Sun, told Journal-isms by email. "however, choosing a pope from those areas is a long shot. it's as if the old guard cannot and will not step aside."
Thompson, rector at the Church of the Holy Covenant in Baltimore, continued, "i'm an episcopalian, part of the anglican communion, and we had a similar situation when our most recent leader, the archbishop of canterbury, retired last year. nigeria has the largest number of anglicans. however, once again, the archbishop came from the british isles.
"sometimes these leadership changes provide insight on a church's thinking as well as power concerns."
Dan Amira wrote Monday for New York magazine, ". . . so far, overseas bookmakers are picking two black cardinals, Ghana's Peter Turkson and Nigeria's Francis Arinze, as the front-runners. . . But don't get too excited just yet. The bookmakers don't really have any idea what they're talking about. . . ."
Of the 118 cardinals eligible to be the next pope, 14 are from Latin America, including three from Brazil, three from Mexico and two from Argentina, Mimi Whitefield and Jim Wyss reported Monday for the Miami Herald.
"Some are on the papal shortlist, but it may be premature to think of a New World pope, said Father Hermann Rodriguez, the dean of theology at Bogotá's Jesuit Javeriana University," the story by Whitefield and Wyss continued.
". . . The pope did not do much in the area of race relations, which is [a] disappointment," the Rev. Susan Smith, another clergy member, told Journal-isms by email.
". . . the words of Jesus (as opposed to Christian doctrine) point to the equality of people, no matter their race, religion or gender. Pope Benedict did not step out of his comfort zone and try to lead priests worldwide to a new consciousness about the need for Christians to embrace racial equality and dignified treatment of all people, since all people were created by the one God of us all."
Smith is senior pastor at Advent United Church of Christ in Columbus, Ohio. She worked for newspapers in Baltimore and Texas, and as a radio and television talk-show host in Baltimore and Columbus.
Not all the concerns are racial. Marlene L. Johnson, a former editor at the Washington Times who is a 2007 graduate of Howard University School of Divinity, earning a masters of arts in religious and social ethics, had these questions she said she'd want to see answered in the coverage:
"Will the conclave's process will be different because of the unexpected resignation of the Pope and how the selection will be handled," she asked by email. "Also there's a looming question of whether the conclave will hesitate to select one of its older members and opt for a younger one. And what systems are in place to accommodate the physical frailties of the Pope in terms of the demands on his time and his travel itineraries. What will be the impact on conclave members and lay Catholics in the interim in view of the looming religious, spiritual and social issues that require leadership from the top?"
Associated Press: The world reacts to pope's decision to retire;
Samuel Burke, CNN: Meet the man who could be the first black pope
Los Angeles Times: The cardinals who might be pope (photo gallery)
Mary Jo McConahay, New America Media: La Sorpresa: The Papal Resignation, in the Latin American Eye
When historical films take license with the facts to fit a filmmaker's narrative, critics are usually admonished with, "It's only a movie."
But what if the movies are shown as part of students' education?
"Steven Spielberg's biopic of Abraham Lincoln is to be sent to schools across the US to be used as a teaching aid," Ben Arnold reported Wednesday for the British version of Yahoo News.
"DVD copies of 'Lincoln', starring Daniel Day-Lewis as the American president, will be sent to high and middle schools as part of a campaign called 'Stand Tall: Live Like Lincoln'."
While the "Lincoln" movie was critically praised and considered an odds-on favorites to win Academy Awards for its principals, it has been criticized for downplaying the role of blacks in their own liberation, along with the role of abolitionists.
Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Eric Foner wrote in a letter to the New York Times, ". . . The 13th Amendment originated not with Lincoln but with a petition campaign early in 1864 organized by the Women's National Loyal League, an organization of abolitionist feminists headed by Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton.
"Moreover, from the beginning of the Civil War, by escaping to Union lines, blacks forced the fate of slavery onto the national political agenda. . . . "
On Tuesday, Lincoln's birthday, the Los Angeles Times editorialized about the film's decision to incorrectly portray the Connecticut congressional delegation as voting against the 13th Amendment, which outlawed slavery.
". . . Of course, 'Lincoln' is not a documentary. It's historical fiction,' the editorial said. "Spielberg and [screenwriter Tony] Kushner were within their rights to take what artistic license they felt was needed, and they did: Dialogue has been created; encounters have been imagined. Nevertheless, the challenge of good historical fiction is to tell a compelling story in the context of history. . . ."
"Employees of The McClatchy Company, which operates The Miami Herald and dozens of other newspapers, will not receive 401(k) matching funds for 2012 -- a repeat of what happened to them in 2011," Ned Resnikoff wrote Tuesday for msnbc.com. His essay was headlined, "How lower-income Americans are shut out of journalism."
" 'We often get asked when the 401(k) match will be reinstated,' said a Monday email to the company’s staff obtained by [media blogger Jim Romenesko]. 'Although reinstating a company match is a priority, the company's financial performance must improve before we can start making matching contributions once again. For now, we will continue to closely monitor the company's profitability to determine when we can reinstate the 401(k) match.'
"McClatchy made the decision to withhold 401(k) benefits in response to falling earnings, an epidemic across the traditional newspaper media. But while much has been said and written about the difficulty of turning a profit in today's journalism world, the labor side of things has been largely ignored. The news media's current economic climate doesn’t just shrink newsrooms and kill magazines: it also reifies professional class barriers, making it tougher for aspiring journalists from working-class backgrounds to obtain steady jobs or big soapboxes. . . . "
Two ways to observe Black History Month via the media:
"When a rapper says he's gonna 'pop a pill' then 'beat that p*ssy like Emmett Till,' that’s when we know that he might have gone just a little bit too far," Dr. Boyce Watkins wrote in his syndicated column. "But that’s just what happened this week, and the Till family isn't happy.
"In the song, Lil Wayne takes the liberty of turning the mutilated face of Emmett Till into a weary s*x organ, ridiculing the agony experienced by this young man many years ago. The matter is made is even sadder by the fact that Till’s legacy was trampled by Lil Wayne, Future and Universal Records right in the middle of Black History Month. . . . "
On Wednesday, Epic Records apologized "and said it was looking to pull all traces off the Internet of the so-called unauthorized remix . . ." Natalie Finn reported for E! Online. ". . . Out of respect for the legacy of Emmett Till and his family and the support of the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr., we are going through great efforts to take down the unauthorized version," the company said.
By contrast, Bonnie Boswell Hamilton, niece of Whitney M. Young Jr., the underappreciated executive director of the National Urban League during the crest of the civil rights movement of the 1960s, has produced a film about her uncle that is to be shown on PBS this month.
"We just had a terrific launch party at the Ford Foundation in NYC," Hamilton wrote via email. " '60 Minutes' Leslie Stahl moderated a panel following the screening with Ken Chenault, Vernon Jordan, Richard Parsons and Jeanette Takamura." The men are African American business executives; Takamura is dean of Columbia University's School of Social Work.
The film's website says, ". . . During the turbulent 60s, he was a diplomat between those in power and those striving for change. Young had the difficult tasks of calming the fears of white allies, relieving the doubts of fellow civil rights leaders, and responding to attacks from the militant black power movement. This complex tale explores the public and private trials of the man at the center of the storm. . . "
"The Powerbroker: Whitney Young's Fight For Civil Rights" premieres on "Independent Lens" on Monday at 10 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings), narrated by Alfre Woodard.
Karen Bass, the Grio: Living Uplifting African-American foster youth
Gene A. Budig, USA Today: No simple answers to racial inequality
Todd Clayton, Huffington Post: Gay Will Never Be the New Black: What James Baldwin Taught Me About My White Privilege
Emily Deruy, ABC News-Univision: Why Some Minorities Lag Behind in Silicon Valley
Lewis Diuguid, Kansas City Star: Honoring black soldiers who helped free Koreans
Fannie Flono, Charlotte (N.C.) Observer: Race, secrets and a past that’s not past
Blair L.M. Kelley, the Grio: What to do if someone asks: 'Why isn’t there a White History Month?'
Julianne Malveaux, syndicated: Embracing Black History
Dawn Turner Trice, Chicago Tribune: Documentary spotlights civil rights pioneer: 'The Powerbroker' features Whitney Young and his work behind scenes
Dawn Turner Trice, Chicago Tribune: Search for natural father leads to racial discovery
Armstrong Williams, Townhall: Strom Thurmond and Essie Mae
"Our Guide to Giving challenged News & Observer readers to give at least $58,000 in donations to the charities on our holiday wish list last year," the Raleigh, N.C., newspaper told readers on Tuesday. "If that happened, we promised that columnist Barry Saunders -- a true-blue UNC fan -- would don the gear of rival Duke. Readers ultimately gave more than $67,500. . . . "
Univision News has signed Dr. Juan José Rivera as its chief medical correspondent, the network announced Tuesday, saying Rivera will appear regularly throughout Univision News programming. ". . . A prominent cardiologist, educator, researcher, and lecturer, Dr. Rivera is the Director of Cardiovascular Prevention for Mount Sinai Hospital in Miami Beach and has his own private practice . . ."
"A Somali journalist was freed after being detained without charges for more than a week for speaking out against the imprisonment of a fellow reporter," the Associated Press reported. "Daud Abdi Daud was released but he said Wednesday that the Somali government wants to charge him in court with 'offending the president's wife.' Government officials declined to comment on Daud's claim that he will be charged. . . . "
Gilbert Alton Maddox, a former communications professor and department chair at Morgan State University who is said to be the first black man in the United States to earn a PhD. in mass communications (1970), died in Washington Jan. 12 of pancreatic cancer, according to Patricia Montemurri, writing last month in the Detroit Free Press, and a death notice in the Washington Post. He was 82. The Riverside Condominium in Detroit said the Detroit native produced six television series on local television in the 1960s and 1970s and also taught at Wayne State University, Howard University, the University of Michigan and the University of the District of Columbia. In a 2007 interview with FishbowlDC, April Ryan, White House correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks, called Maddox the person who had the biggest influence on her journalism career.
UNITY Journalists for Diversity, Inc. said Wednesday it supports the Newspaper Association of America's lawsuit against the Postal Regulatory Commission regarding a deal to offer a reduced mailing rate solely to Valassis Direct Mail. "Cuts to the newspaper industry disproportionately hurt diversity in news coverage and the numbers of journalists of color and other underrepresented groups in newsrooms. . . .," the organization said.
As reported on Friday, longtime news anchor Bruce Johnson of Washington's WUSA-TV has produced "Before You Eat The Church Food," a documentary that addresses high mortality rates among African Americans from cardiovascular disease, linking them to eating habits and lack of exercise. Andre H. Williams, CEO of the Association of Black Cardiologists, Inc. told Journal-isms Wednesday that the organization is launching www.beforeyoueatthechurchfood.com on Monday, from which copies of the video may be downloaded free of charge. Johnson, a heart attack survivor, produced the 40-minute documentary for the association. (Video).
Producer Tracey E. Edmonds has teamed with BET Founder Robert L. Johnson to establish Alright TV, which launches on Easter Sunday, transmitting via YouTube. The network "will appeal to the aspirational and inspirational goals of consumers of all ages with buzz-worthy comedies, talk, reality, music, and online streaming of Sunday church services from around the country," according to a news release.
"Three Nigerian journalists have been arrested and accused of inciting violence by saying on a radio show that polio immunizations were an anti-Islamic Western conspiracy, just days before health workers administering the vaccines were killed, the police said Monday," Reuters reported. "Gunmen shot the nine health workers in Kano on Friday. . . ."
A memorial service for Faye Bellamy Powell, an activist with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in Selma, Ala., who edited the SNCC newsletter, is scheduled for Feb. 22 at the Auburn Avenue Research Library in Atlanta, according to Atlanta's WRFG-FM. The station produced a podcast discussing her life. Bellamy Powell died on Jan. 5 at age 74. "Fay played a central role at WRFG from the very beginning. She served on the WRFG Board of Directors in the 1970's and, in 1977, became the first Black and first woman to serve as board chair. She was also on the station's Program Committee in the 1970's and set the tone for the station's progressive stance on issues of and advocacy for justice overall," the station said.
In Chicago, the Community Renewal Society is seeking an editor and publisher for its investigative news organization, the Chicago Reporter. "The Reporter is a non-profit, independent news organization that examines issues in metropolitan Chicago with a focus on race and poverty. It deploys investigative and computer-assisted reporting, data analysis and a distinctive focus on the poor and communities of color to produce groundbreaking, high-impact journalism," an announcement says.
Longtime anchor Jim Vance of WRC-TV in Washington reiterated his opposition to the Washington Redskins team name in an essay, Dan Steinberg reported Monday in the Washington Post. "Back in the day, if you really wanted to insult a black man, attack a Jew, an Irishman, and probably start a fight, you threw out certain words," Vance said on Friday. "You know what they are. They were, and they are, pejoratives of the first order, the worst order, specifically intended to injure. In my view, 'Redskin' was and is in that same category. . . .”
"John Rogers is joining WFLA, the NBC affiliate in Tampa-St. Petersburg. He will be a reporter covering Manatee and Sarasota counties," Merrill Knox reported Wednesday for TVSpy. ". . . Since 2009, Rogers has been a reporter at WALA, the Fox affiliate in Mobile, Ala."
Drab coverage of Ecuador's presidential election ". . . is one result of reforms to the electoral law that took effect in February 2012, which prohibit biased reporting on electoral campaigns and [allow] candidates to sue reporters and news outlets who allegedly violate the law," John Otis reported Tuesday for the Committee to Protect Journalists. "To avoid lawsuits, El Universo's editors have set aside an inside page of the newspaper devoting equal space to everyone from the frontrunner -- President Rafael Correa, who is seeking a third term -- to fringe candidates. . . ."
"The Criminal Court in Bangkok has sentenced the former editor of the now defunct magazine Voice of Thaksin for defaming Thailand's monarchy," Adnan Mujagi? reported Tuesday for the International Press Institute. "The Criminal Court sentenced Somyot Prueksakasemsuk to 11 years in jail for publishing two articles deemed insulting of the royal family. . . ."
Facebook users: "Like" "Richard Prince's Journal-isms" on Facebook.
New Republic's article "The Party of White People" prompts critics to turn the tables.
"The New Republic is catching heat for its latest cover story about the Republican party, titled 'The Party of White People: An Historical Investigation,' " Dylan Byers wrote Monday for Politico.
It might be the most attention that the issue of the diversity of media staffs has received from a non-journalism publication in years.
The focus of the attention is an experiment being closely watched in some media circles. Chris Hughes, the 29-year-old co-founder of Facebook, former online campaign adviser to President Obama and the New Republic's newest owner, is hoping to turn around the magazine he bought in March, as Christine Haughney wrote last month in the New York Times.
The magazine he purchased is part of an industry that might be the whitest, most segregated part of the news media.
Byers' report continued, "The complaint, voiced by Reason.com on Friday and by the influential conservative blogger Ace of Spades today, is that the ultra-white TNR is one to talk.
" '[A] quick Wikipedia investigation of the magazine's 15 editors throughout its century of publishing reveals that each and every one... was not just white, but white and male,' Reason's Matt Welch writes. 'Though word on the street is that TNR is now 'add[ing] women's voices to a magazine that has long been short on them,' so hooray for progress, etc.
"Ace's tirade against TNR comes in a series of tweets, including: '[B]ased on the TNR writers I know, the palette ranges all the way from pasty to eggshell'; 'Some of us dream of an All-White Nation... but in the meantime we content ourselves with TNR's offices'; 'GOP: The Party of White People' 'TNR: The Magazine of White People' 'MSM: The Industry of White People'; and on, and on, and on."
Byers' opinion? "The TNR staff is and always has been predominantly white — even moreso than your average American magazine — but the notion that this should preclude them from publishing an article on the Republican party's problems with non-white voters is absurd. Everyone with even an introductory understanding of politics — including prominent conservative pundits — knows that the GOP needs to reach non-white male voters. It's why Fox News president Roger Ailes appears in the pages of this week's issue talking about Hispanic outreach. (It's also worth noting that Ace of Spades and Reason didn't seem to have a problem with the majority white Fox News discussing the party's whiteness on election night.)"
Byers concluded, ". . . Should TNR diversify its offices? That's up to them. But for the GOP, it isn't a case of should or shouldn't. It's a case of must."
Byers came back with a second post that quoted a New Republic intern who wrote. "I would venture to say that the Republican Party cares more about diversity than the New Republic does.
"The Republican Party has at least recognized that it has a problem with outreach to nonwhite voters. I haven't seen any such soul searching from a magazine that professes to be the New Yorker of Washington D.C. . . . "
Byers also quoted Washington Post publisher Donald E. Graham, who quipped in 1995 that the New Republic's motto was "Looking for a qualified black since 1914."
At the end of the workday, Byers came back with a third posting, quoting Douglas Blackmon, a former Wall Street Journal Atlanta bureau chief who "added that when he left the Journal in 2011 there were no African American reporters or editors 'of any particular stature' at the paper, and that none had been hired in the last four years of his time there. . . . "
Blackmon, who joined the Washington Post as a contributing editor a year ago, is the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of "Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II." He splits his time between the Post and the University of Virginia.
Spokeswomen for the New Republic and the Wall Street Journal could not be reached for comment.
Jamelle Bouie, the Magazine: And Read All Over: An implicit network, not overt racism, keeps tech writing dominated by white men. (Jan. 3)
Lizzy Ratner, New York Oberver: Vanilla Ceiling: Magazines Still Shades Of White (2006)
Derek J. Murphy, who supervised multicultural initiatives for the Huffington Post before he became one of four general managers let go in a reorganization last October, on Monday was named executive vice president and general manager of USA Today.
Jim Hopkins wrote for his independent Gannett Blog, ". . . Murphy is African-American, and his appointment immediately makes him one of Gannett's highest-level minority executives when the company's management ranks have been growing less diverse at the most senior levels. Historically, GCI [Gannett Co. Inc.] has led the newspaper industry in workforce diversity efforts."
Hopkins also wrote that several of USA Today's traditional key functions had already been spun off to other Gannett executives or divisions. ". . . That leaves a relatively diminished portfolio anchored by editorial for Murphy and Kramer to manage in the struggling paper's current turnaround. . . ."
Murphy said in the news release, "As we're transitioning to the digital-first model, I'll be working closely with Larry, the leadership team and other Gannett divisions to realize the potential of the USA TODAY brand."
"Leveraging the recent relaunch of the USA TODAY site, Murphy will also focus on expanding 'new digital offerings and creating demand for all USA TODAY brands,' he says," according to the announcement.
" 'There's so much upside to working with an iconic brand — to get in at a time when it's clear that the brand is in transition and with so many opportunities to shape its future direction,' he says."
When USA Today unveiled a redesign of its pages in September, Kramer said, "We are making a real investment in USA Today, and putting a major focus on reinvigorating the value of print media while introducing new digital products. . . ."
Some critics were skeptical. "As it approaches its 30th birthday, USA Today is in danger of 'marking 30,' a journalistic term for coming to an end, or dying," John K. Hartman wrote in Editor & Publisher.
When Huffington Post named Murphy general manager for multicultural in 2011, a news release said, ". . . Derek Murphy will drive the overall strategy and operational performance for AOL Latino, BlackVoices and AOL's other multicultural offerings.
"Murphy had been COO of Global Media Ventures, which he formed with [Sheila C.] Johnson," co-founder of Black Entertainment Television. "He was previously Senior Vice President, Business Development of The Huffington Post. Prior to that, he was at CNN, where he oversaw integrated media partnerships with a broad range of companies, including Google and Amazon." Murphy has an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
A fourth editor — Photo Editor Deborah Boardley — is leaving Essence magazine, spokeswoman Dana Baxter confirmed on Monday.
The departures come as the parent Time Inc. is cutting some 500 jobs. Neither Baxter nor a spokeswoman for Time Inc. would say whether any of those leaving were part of the corporate layoffs.
Boardley was previously photo editor at Vibe Vixen magazine. Before that, she was an intern at Vibe and senior photo editor at In Touch Weekly.
Vanessa K. Bush, who had been executive editor at Essence, is to be interim managing editor, Baxter said on Friday.
The Crazy Horse Journalism Workshop, which has trained nearly 1,700 high school and college students in South Dakota's Black Hills, will not be offered this year because of funding problems at its main sponsor, the Freedom Forum, according to Randell Beck, publisher of the Argus Leader in Sioux Falls, S.D.
"We simply did not have the funding," Beck told Journal-isms by telephone on Monday. "We're hoping to bring it back next year."
Beck chairs the minority affairs committee of the South Dakota News Association, which helps to fund the workshop, along with the Argus Leader. However, the Freedom Forum is the largest funder, Beck said.
The committee plans to meet this summer "and look at creative ways to do this," Beck said. "We'll try to evaluate what our options are."
As reported on Friday, the financially troubled Freedom Forum Diversity Institute has removed from its website references to three journalism programs that train Native Americans and students at historically black colleges and universities.
Freedomforumdiversity.org no longer mentions the Crazy Horse Journalism Workshop, the Multimedia Scholars Program or the American Indian Journalism Institute. However, the Chips Quinn Scholars Program remains.
The independent Gannett Blog reported Jan. 9, "The financially troubled non-profit foundation paid CEO James Duff $1.6 million during his first four months on the job in 2011, a year when the Newseum's operator ran a $47 million deficit, newly released public documents show."
Al Neuharth, USA Today: Crazy Horse spurs young Indian media (April 19, 2012)
Mary Kay Blake, senior vice president of the Newseum and a longtime diversity fixture at the Newseum, Freedom Forum or Gannett Co., confirmed Monday that she is retiring. Blake said she would continue to work in the Newseum's development area, as she has for the past six years, but as a volunteer.
"I remain an advocate for diversity — in newsrooms and in life," Blake told Journal-isms by email.
According to her bio, "Previously she served as senior vice president of development for the Newseum and led its fundraising efforts as a public charity. She joined the Freedom Forum in 1999 to oversee its diversity efforts.
"Before that, she worked 25 years with Gannett Co., starting as news editor for the Pacific Daily News on the island of Guam and moving through corporate recruiting and staff-development roles to become vice president/recruiting and placement for Gannett's Newspaper Division. The first non-minority board member of the National Association of Multicultural Media Executives, she also was the first woman to receive its Distinguished Diversity Award for Lifetime Achievement."
Veteran journalist Tim Giago, an Oglala Lakota, announced Monday that he is ending his column of more than 30 years.
Giago is a founder of the Native American Journalists Association and editor and publisher of the Lakota times and Indian Country Today newspapers. He was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard, class of 1991. In addition to writing from a Native American point of view, long ago raising the issue of Indians as mascots and challenging Oprah Winfrey's producers and the History Channel when necessary, Giago explained to non-Indians why he believed "Indians" to be preferable to "Native American."
". . . Most older American Indians do not use the term 'American Indian' but instead use the single word 'Indian,' " Giago wrote in 2008. "They refer to themselves as 'Indian' and seldom use the PC words Native American. The word 'Indian' is a derivation of the Spanish 'Indios' which was shortened from the Spanish 'Ninos en Dios' which means 'Children of God.' In much of South America and Central America the Natives are called 'Indios.' "
In his farewell column, published on indianz.com and the Huffington Post, Giago wrote, ". . . I know there is one person who will miss my weekly columns. His name is Bill Dulaney and he is a retired professor of journalism from Penn State. In my last conversation with Bill he told me that his battle with cancer is about over. The cancer has now gone to his brain and that brilliant instrument that guided him through a career in journalism is about to grow dim. In 1983 Bill and I put our heads together and came up with the idea of a Native American Journalists Association to emulate the other great minority journalist associations. We succeeded in this endeavor with the support and guidance of Allen Neuharth, then the head of the Gannett Foundation. Twenty nine years later the association is still strong and viable.
"It was never a challenge to find material every week because there was always something either good or bad happening in Indian country. In fact there were times when I had to sort through the material offered in order to choose the subject I thought to be the most tantalizing.
"But I believe that one of the most important things my weekly column accomplished was to take on the closed media in South Dakota in the 1980s and cause them to open their news pages to more positive news concerning Native Americans in their state. I wrote at the time that South Dakota was like the proverbial mule: you had to hit it between the eyes with a two-by-four in order to get its attention. . . . "
" 'Entertainment Tonight' scored one last year. The New York Times did not," Paul Farhi reported Monday in the Washington Post.
" 'The View' has gotten several. The Washington Post hasn't had one in years.
"Albuquerque radio station KOB-FM’s 'Morning Mayhem' crew interviewed him in August. The last time the Wall Street Journal did so was in 2009.
"America's newspapers have trouble enough these days, what with shrinking ad revenue and straying readers. But the daily print-and-pixel press also hasn't gotten much love lately from the biggest newsmaker in the business: President Obama.
"When Obama does media interviews these days, it's not with a newspaper. TV gets the bulk of the president's personal attention, from his frequent appearances on '60 Minutes' to MTV to chitchats with local stations around the country. Magazines — including the New Republic, which recently landed an interview conducted by its owner, Facebook co-founder and former Obama campaign operative Chris Hughes — are a distant second, followed by radio.
"Newspapers? Well, Obama may be the least newspaper-friendly president in a generation.
". . . What's more, despite a string of interviews with ethnic broadcasters, including Telemundo and Univision recently, Obama has never consented to an interview with any member of the National Newspaper Publishers Association, an organization consisting of 210 African-American-owned newspapers, said Robert W. Bogle, the organization’s former president. Obama and George W. Bush were the first presidents who haven't done so since Franklin Roosevelt, notes Bogle, the chief executive of the Philadelphia Tribune. . . . "
However, Obama has given interviews to magazines, both mainstream and black-oriented.
Susan Goldberg, executive editor of Bloomberg News in Washington and president of the American Society of News (formerly Newspaper) Editors, declined to comment.
Perry Bacon Jr., the Grio: 4 years into Obama era, a complicated state of our union
David Carr, New York Times: Debating Drones, in the Open
Ta-Nehisi Coates blog, the Atlantic: The Excellent Age of No-Fuss Drones and Remarkable War
Mark R. Jacobson, Washington Post: Five myths about Obama's drone war
Eugene Kane, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Obama missed with skeet photo
Jennifer LaFleur, ProPublica: Has Obama Kept His Open-Government Pledge?
Julianne Malveaux, syndicated: Obama Slights his Loyal Following (Jan. 30)
Askia Muhammad, Washington Informer: Let Slip the Dogs of War (Jan. 30)
Ruben Navarrette Jr., Washington Post News Media Services: Pretender to a legacy
Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Obama's drone use attracts wrong allies
Clarence Page, Chicago Tribune: Obama's license to kill by drone
Pew Research Center for the People & the Press: Continued Support for U.S. Drone Strikes
Gary Younge, the Guardian, Britain: Barack Obama is Pushing Gun Control at Home, but He's a Killer Abroad
"Television networks ABC and Univision announced on Monday the name of their new cable network targeting U.S. Hispanics and that it will launch in the second half of 2013," Susanna Kim reported Monday for ABC News.
"Five cable operators, including Cablevision, Charter, Cox, AT&T U-verse and Google Fiber, have already agreed to carry the new channel, Fusion.
"The companies say the new network will serve 50 million Hispanics, focusing on the issues 'most relevant' for the youngest and fastest-growing demographic in the U.S. The network's coverage will include 'the economy, entertainment, music, food, immigration, pop culture, education, politics, health and wellness and more,' according to a statement released jointly by ABC and Univision.
"With spending power of over $1 trillion, Hispanics represent 16 percent of the total population in the U.S., a number that is projected to double to 30 percent by 2050. . . . "
"There have been some strange sights on Cuban TV sets recently," Andrea Rodriguez reported Sunday for the Associated Press.
"News-starved viewers watched an Ecuadorean opposition candidate liken the government of President Rafael Correa, one of Havana's staunchest allies, to a moonwalking Michael Jackson: He walks like he's moving ahead, but he's actually going backward.
"On another day Cubans learned a quarter-billion of their fellow Latin Americans have access to the Internet — something less than 10 percent of islanders can say themselves.
"Cubans even watched a live broadcast of U.S. President Barack Obama's inaugural address.
"Such images would be unremarkable in most countries, but they're a break from the stodgy, tightly scripted state-run television that has long been the only fare in Cuba, with its mind-numbing tributes to efficiency, constant diatribes against the U.S. economic embargo and remembrances of minor anniversaries from the early years of the 1959 revolution.
"The change has come not from U.S.-funded TV Marti, which few Cubans can see, but via the left-leaning Latin American news channel Telesur, which is bankrolled primarily by Venezuela. Since Jan. 20, it has broadcast live about 12 hours a day in Cuba. . . ."
"Sonny Albarado, president of the Society of Professional Journalists, last week wrote Ann [Kimbrough] of Florida A&M University's journalism school out of concern for its student journalists' First Amendment rights. SPJ President-elect David Cuillier co-authored the letter," SPJ reported on Monday. "The production of the student newspaper The Famuan was suspended in January because of a libel suit filed against the paper and the university. . . . "
The Ron Brown Scholar Program plans to honor Earl G. Graves, Sr., founder of Black Enterprise magazine, and William Raspberry, the late Washington Post columnist, at its fourth annual American Journey awards in Washington on March 22.
The Michigan Chronicle launched a business section, publisher Hiram E. Jackson told readers on Friday. ". . . It's important that we recognize the role played by entrepreneurs in advancing positive social changes. I don't mean businesspeople solving social ills, but people spreading new approaches — through nonprofits and businesses, or within government — to address problems more successfully than in the past . . . ," Jackson wrote.
"Johnson Publishing Company introduces 'EBONY Moments,' featuring downloadable classic interviews, and music via EBONY.com, during Black History Month," the publishing company announced on Monday. "The first release of EBONY Moments interviews feature Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Eddie Murphy, Spike Lee and others starting at $1.29 each. . . ."
"WTVJ, the NBC-owned station in South Florida, is shuffling weekend and weekday anchors," Merrill Knox reported Monday for TVSpy. "Beginning today, Jawan Strader . . . replaces Keith Jones . . . as co-anchor of the weekday morning newscast. Strader joined WTVJ in August after a decade at rival WFOR, where he was also the morning anchor. At WTVJ, Strader will join Pam Giganti at the anchor desk. . . ."
The Asian American Journalists Association asked Current TV Monday for an apology after remark by host Jackie Schechner. "In trying to counter an argument by Michele Malkin on the health care debate on the show 'Talking Liberally with Stephanie Miller,' your host Jacki Schechner played a comment from Ms. Malkin. Ms. Miller followed up with a dismissive quip, saying 'we tried to unpack that little rice ball of nonsense,' " Paul Cheung, AAJA national president, wrote.
"The Southern Digest at Southern University and A&M College
took top honors at the National HBCU Student News Media Conference, winning Best Student Newspaper, plus four first-place awards and three second-place honors," the Black College Communication Association announced Saturday from Nashville, Tenn., site of the conference.
"Reporters Without Borders condemns the detention of several foreign journalists for several hours on 8 February in Bamako," Mali, the press freedom organization said on Monday. " . . . Usually kept at a distance and sometimes roughed up, journalists have been the victims of obstruction by the authorities since the start of the intervention. Cities remain inaccessible for several days after they have been retaken and the fighting is over, and reporters are kept far from the front lines. . . ."
"The United States said on Wednesday it had sanctioned Iran's main agency in charge of broadcasting for helping the government censor Western reports, part of a broader effort by Washington to pressure Tehran's nuclear program," Timothy Gardner reported for Reuters.
Evaluating the post-Arab Spring Egyptian government of the ruling Muslim Brotherhood, Hani Shukrallah wrote Friday for Foreign Policy, " . . . Freedom of expression and freedom to peacefully protest have also been under concerted attack by the new regime. The Brotherhood, rather than acting to guarantee the independence of the state-owned media, has sought to bring these outlets under its sway — maintaining and even increasing their obsequiousness to the ruler of the moment and their nearly unmitigated lack of professionalism. The Brotherhood did so even as it acted to intimidate and strangle privately owned media: Its Salafi allies laid siege to Greater Cairo's Media City, home to most private TV stations, and called for the 'purging' of the media, while the government launched a record number of cases against the president's critics in the media, most prominently liberal satirist Bassem Youssef — Egypt's Jon Stewart. . . . "
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