CNN Contradicts Ted Cruz’s Campaign, Says Network Never Said Ben Carson Was Dropping Out

Ben Carson speaks as Texas Sen. Ted Cruz looks on during the Republican presidential debate at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines on Jan. 28, 2016.
Jim Watson/Getty Images
Ben Carson speaks as Texas Sen. Ted Cruz looks on during the Republican presidential debate at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines on Jan. 28, 2016.
Jim Watson/Getty Images

Texan Cites Network in Spreading Falsehood About Carson

"CNN has accused the campaign of Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz of making false statements about the network's reporting on the campaign of GOP rival Ben Carson," Mark Joyella reported Wednesday for TVNewser. 'Senator Cruz's claims about CNN are false,' the network said in a statement Wednesday evening. 'At no point did the network indicate Dr. Carson would suspend his campaign.'

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"The network's reporting — that Carson would make a trip to Florida before resuming his campaign — came as voters in Iowa were preparing to make the first solid votes of the 2016 campaign. CNN's statement said 'Dr. Carson's staff informed CNN that he would return home to take a "deep breath" before resuming his activities on the trail. That information was reported accurately by CNN across TV and digital.'

"That's not quite how the story was shared by the Cruz campaign, which spread word in Iowa that Carson seemed to be suspending his campaign. Cruz later blamed CNN for getting its facts wrong. . . . "

Billionaire Donald Trump, who came in second in the Iowa Republican caucuses, charged the Texas senator with "fraud" and called for a do-over of the Iowa caucuses, Kathleen Hennessey and Steve Peoples reported for the Associated Press. They also wrote, "Ted Cruz didn't win Iowa, he stole it,' Trump tweeted, and his campaign accused Cruz of dirty tricks in telling Ben Carson's supporters their man was dropping out and they should turn to the Texan. . . ."

Meanwhile, Kathie Obradovich noted in the Des Moines Register that "Republicans, turning out in record numbers, awarded their caucus win for the first time to a candidate with a Hispanic heritage, Sen. Ted Cruz." Right-wing media outlets seized on the failure to trumpet that development as evidence of media bias.

"Because the DC Media believe it is a powerful weapon that benefits Democrats, nothing will ever stop them from using it," John Nolte wrote Tuesday forbrietbart.com.

"But if this same media truly believed in science and objectivity, the results in Iowa would forever end their relentless smears against conservatives as racists. Tuesday night, one of the whitest and most conservative states in the country — Iowa — gave 60% of the Republican vote to two Hispanics and a black man.

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"Moreover, for the first time in history a Hispanic won a presidential primary. But due to the fact that Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is Republican, no one on the media dares say so. . . ."

Andrés Oppenheimer, Latin American affairs columnist for the Miami Herald, was not impressed.

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"Judging from the anti-immigrant rhetoric from Republican hopefuls in the Iowa caucuses, the Republican Party is marching straight to its third consecutive defeat in the November presidential elections," Oppenheimer wrote Wednesday.

"The three Republicans who received the most votes in Iowa — Ted Cruz, Donald Trump and Marco Rubio, in that order — competed to woo extreme-right primary voters by claiming to be the toughest against undocumented immigrants, and promising to build a wall on the border with Mexico. They seemed oblivious to the fact that Republicans lost the most recent elections because they alienated too many Hispanic voters.

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"The three 'amigos' — Cruz, Trump and Rubio — are following the steps of failed Republican candidate Mitt Romney, who famously proposed the 'self-deportation' of undocumented immigrants in 2012. Romney lost the 2012 elections in large part because he got only 27 percent of the Hispanic vote, compared to the 71 percent obtained by President Barack Obama. . . ."

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Washington Post: Dear Trump supporters: Hear me out before you vote. Yours, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

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Christine Ayala, Dallas Morning News: Ted Cruz is the first Hispanic candidate to win a presidential caucus

Lauren Victoria Burke, The Root: A Who's Who of Who's Black on the Campaign Trail

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Jarvis DeBerry, NOLA.com | the Times-Picayune: Ben Carson as the emperor who has no clothes

Courtney Enlow, pajiba.com: An All-Caps Explosion of Feelings Regarding the Liberal Backlash Against Hillary Clinton

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Marina Fang, Huffington Post: Marco Rubio Doesn't Have A Clue What 'Oscars So White' Means

Richard Fowler, Ebony: Iowa, the Primary Season and the Political Learning Curve

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Gromer Jeffers Jr., Dallas Morning News: You need a bruising ground game to win at politics

Errol Louis, Daily News, New York: Bipartisan immigration hypocrisy: Democrats and Republicans should try to understand where their opponents are coming from

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Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Not too early to rank presidential also-rans

Clarence Page, Chicago Tribune: A humble Trump? Sorry, 'loo-zahs'

Nate Silver, FiveThirtyEight.com: Donald Trump Comes Out Of Iowa Looking Like Pat Buchanan

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Margaret Sullivan, New York Times: 'A Very Heated Reaction' to The Times's Endorsement of Hillary Clinton

Joe Tacopino and Natalie O'Neill, New York Post: Donald Trump admits ditching Fox News debate was a bad idea

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Mark Trahant, TrahantReports.com: Self-determination should be on the table for presidential campaign

R. Thomas Umstead, Multichannel News: Viewers Elect to Watch Cable News Nets for Political Coverage

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Reporter Fired Over Fabrications, Impersonations

"The news website The Intercept said on Tuesday that a former reporter had fabricated quotations in some of his articles and impersonated other people by using email accounts in their names," Daniel E. Slotnik reported Tuesday for the New York Times.

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"Betsy Reed, the news organization's editor in chief, said that the first evidence appeared in late December and that the reporter, Juan Thompson, was fired on Jan. 4. In an online note to readers, she listed four articles that had been corrected and one that had been retracted.

"Ms. Reed wrote that an internal investigation turned up instances in which Mr. Thompson quoted people who later said he had never interviewed them, could not remember speaking with him or whose identities could not be confirmed. She added that he had also quoted unnamed people he claimed to have met at public events whose words could not be verified and that he had used an email account in someone else's name to impersonate a source.

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"The note also said he had created an account in her name.

" 'We apologize to the subjects of these stories; to the people who were falsely quoted; and to you, our readers,' Ms. Reed wrote. 'We are contacting news outlets that picked up the corrected stories to alert them to the problems.'

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"The retracted article was based on an interview with someone presented as Scott Roof, the cousin of Dylann Roof, who is accused of murdering nine people in a racially motivated attack in a church in Charleston, S.C., last June. In the article, Scott Roof is quoted saying that Dylann Roof's hatred may have stemmed from a girl who chose to date a black man rather than him.

" 'After speaking with two members of Dylann Roof's family, The Intercept can no longer stand by the premise of this story,' the retraction on top of the article says. 'Both individuals said they do not know of a cousin named Scott Roof.' . . ."

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According to its mission statement, "The Intercept, launched in 2014 by Glenn GreenwaldLaura Poitras and Jeremy Scahill, is dedicated to producing fearless, adversarial journalism . . . ."

Meanwhile, Jason Silverstein reported Wednesday for the Daily News in New York, "The pattern of lies looks all too familiar to Jayson Blair.

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"The disgraced former New York Times reporter — one of journalism's most infamous fabricators — said Wednesday that he sympathizes with Juan Thompson, who was fired from The Intercept for making up stories.

"Blair couldn’t help but see a little humor in the situation, though.

" 'It's like watching a train wreck in slow motion,' Blair told the Daily News, chuckling about Thompson's apparent brazen lies and coverups.  'It's bad, man. It's bad,' Blair said. . . ."

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Blair "never tried to reenter journalism, and advised the same for Thompson," Silverstein wrote.

" 'It's very hard for someone to recover from something like this,' the infamous fabulist said. . . ."

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Betsy Reed, the Intercept: A Note to Readers

Sydney Smith, iMediaEthics.org: Talking Points Memo Unpublishes Juan Thompson Essay, Trust with Writer 'Irrevocably Broken'

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J.K. Trotter, Gawker.com: Reporter Fabricated Quotes, Invented Sources at The Intercept

Michael Feeney Fund Exceeds $20K Goal; Services Set

The fund created to honor the memory of journalist Michael J. Feeney exceeded its $20,000 goal in two days — raising $23,975 as of 10:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday. A count on the website showed that 499 people contributed.

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Feeney, 32, died in New York on Sunday as he was about to begin a new stage in his career as an entertainment journalist at CNN. The family said he died from complications from a staph infection to his kidneys.

They announced services Monday and Tuesday in New York and Englewood, N.J.

The Monday service takes place at First Corinthian Baptist Church, 1912 Adam Clayton Powell Blvd. (formerly 7th Avenue), New York, NY 10026, at 116th Street. Viewing is from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., with the funeral service immediately following.

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On Tuesday, a service takes place at Community Baptist Church, 224 First St., Englewood, N.J. 07631. Viewing is scheduled from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., with the service immediately following.

Dawn Tennent, a cousin, told Journal-isms by email that the money raised online will go to the family for funeral costs, with $10,000 to start his endowment fund for scholarships.

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10,000 Copies of Fake, Pro-Palestinian N.Y. Times

" 'Congress to Debate U.S. Aid to Israel,' reads the front page of the latest edition of The New York Times — or, rather, the latest fake edition of the Times," Ben Norton reported Wednesday for Salon.com.

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"Activists from progressive Jewish human rights groups created a very convincing-looking fake edition of The New York Times to protest the leading newspaper's coverage of Israel.

"The parody publication is written from a left-wing, anti-racist, anti-Islamophobic perspective that criticizes Israel's violations of international law and Palestinian human rights, along with what the groups say is the Times' failure to adequately address these crimes.

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"Early Tuesday morning, the activists, under the name The New York Times, sent an email out to reporters across the country titled 'NYT Announces New Editorial Policy: Rethinking Our Coverage of Israel-Palestine.' The email included a link to an entire website modeled on the Times' own site, www.NewYorkTimes-IP.com, which the activists created.

"Less than 24 hours after the site was made public, on Tuesday evening, it was taken down. . . ." The publishers distributed 10,000 copies of the fake paper for free in downtown New York on Tuesday morning.

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Norton and Jane Hirschmann, a member of Jews Say No! in New York, appeared Wednesday on Pacifica Radio's "Democracy Now!"

"What can we do about this, the fact that the coverage never has any context to what's going on in Israel and Palestine?" Hirschmann said. "People are not aware that there's a 67-year occupation, that they're not two equal peoples. The press — and it's not just The New York Times, it's really all the press. They always typecast the Palestinians as the terrorists, and the poor Israelis are the victims. And we felt that the time had come to really put out the news, the real news, about it. . . ."

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Danyel Smith, Former Vibe Editor, Joins the Undefeated

Danyel Smith, a former editor of Vibe magazine who started a book-shaped magazine called HRDCVR two years ago with her husband, hip-hop journalist Elliott Wilsonis joining the ESPN project the Undefeated as senior culture writer, ESPN announced on Wednesday.

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The announcement came the same day that Washington Post media writer Erik Wemple quoted Post executive editor Martin Baron addressing the loss of several black journalists to the Undefeated, headed by his former managing editor, Kevin Merida.

"Asked about the departures, Washington Post Executive Editor Martin Baron said, 'We always hate to lose talented people,' " Wemple wrote. "What the departure announcements don't quite convey, says Baron, is the number of people who've chosen to stay despite offers, a number that he declines to detail. Also: Departures tend to get more attention than hires, notes Baron, pointing out that the Washington Post has been growing and so has diversity. . . ."

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Wemple also wrote, "Diversity in leadership ranks, Baron acknowledges, is a matter separate from the overall newsroom minority numbers. . . ."

The media writer said of the Post, "There isn't an African-American among the eight officials listed under the news and editorial/opinion operations. (The Erik Wemple Blog, who is white, works under the latter.) The highest-ranking African-American editor at The Post is Jesse Lewis, who oversees more than forty editors who serve as the last line of defense for the paper's print and digital journalism. Of approximately 15 deputy editors, two are African-American. . . ."

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On Monday, Andrew Beaujon reported for Washingtonian magazine that Clinton Yates of the Post's sports department was the latest Post journalist to "get poached" by the Undefeated. From the Post, "Soraya Nadia McDonald, Michael Fletcher, and Lonnae O'Neal have joined. Former Posties Steve Reiss and Jason Reid have gone over, and former sports section star Mike Wise announced in November 2014 he'd join the publication, which was at the time headed by Jason Whitlock. . . ."

There was no indication about the future of Smith's HRDCVR project. Smith's LinkedIn profile says, "The former editor of Billboard, Smith is also the former chief content officer of VIBE Media Group. She's a former Time Inc editor-at-large, and has written for NPR, CNN, ESPN, Elle, Time, Essence, the New Yorker, Rolling Stone, Condé Nast Media Group, and the New York Times.

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"Smith often comments on music and culture for NPR, MSNBC, CNN, VH1, and ABC. She's written two novels, and she is working on a history of African-American women in pop music (Dey Street/HarperCollins). . . ."

Wemple also wrote, "For his part, Merida notes that he's been shopping for talent in all kinds of places. 'I haven't gotten every single person that I've wanted to get from any place,' he says. As for The Post: 'There's no intentional effort to hurt the cause of diversity there or to decimate The Post of black staffers or anything like that. I don't like the term 'raid' because it sounds like it's some kind of diabolical thing,' says Merida. . . ."

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. . . Merida: I Root for Posties, Hope They Root for Me

Kevin Merida, editor-in-chief of The Undefeated, the ESPN site that covers the intersection of sports, race and culture, responds to observations that he is hiring disproportionately from his former employer, the Washington Post, by declaring, "There is no diabolical effort to hurt an institution I will always love."

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He provided this statement to Journal-isms:

"We are trying to build the best staff we can build at The Undefeated, and build it quickly. We're a startup, and there is a lot of energy and excitement around this project that I want to capitalize on.

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"The journalists we've hired from The Post are people whose work I know well. I know what they can bring to The Undefeated, and that's helpful when you're starting something new and you're new at it. But we've been deluged with interest from talented journalists everywhere, and have hired and recruited from all over — not just from The Post. Some of our hires have not yet been announced, and there is more hiring to be done.

"I think the term raid, which was invoked, suggests some targeted campaign aimed at a place I have deep affection for. In recruiting from The Post, there is no diabolical effort to hurt an institution I will always love. It's simply part of an effort to field the best team for The Undefeated.

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"If you've been a manager in our profession, you know you will experience both sides of this divide. Sometimes you land someone terrific from another media outlet, and sometimes you have to part with someone you hate to lose. I have been on both sides of that. That's the nature of our business. Those who have joined us thus far, and regrettably we don't even have enough room for everyone who wants to join us, they realize this is a special opportunity that doesn't come around every day.

"The Undefeated is not for everybody. But I think we're going to provide some opportunities that people have never had, and nurture some talent that hasn't been nurtured. To my friends and colleagues at The Post, I root for them every single day and am proud to have worked there. I hope they will root for me."

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Black Lives Matter: Circumventing Local Media Is Crucial

"Stepping back for a moment, one of the noteworthy facets of the protests over the police shooting of Jamar Clark this past November was how protest organizers followed a relatively new and effective template for quickly building crowds and media attention," Brian Lambert wrote Tuesday for MinnPost, published in Minneapolis.

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"The marrying of traditional civil rights protest tactics (draw crowds, disrupt routine activity) with the savvy use of social media and direct confrontation with traditional news sources helped organizers control their message in a remarkably effective manner. At the same time, the immediacy and volume of alternative media messaging also presented local newsrooms with new challenges in fully and fairly reporting racially¬charged incidents.

"One obvious revolution is the continuing growth in the use of Twitter and Facebook (and, to a lesser extent, other venues) in speaking immediately and directly to core audiences, people primed by established relationships to respond with their physical presence at a moment's notice — and to serve as instantaneous amplifiers for reaching those who aren't yet among the organizers' 'followers.'

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"The days of formal press releases sent to conventional news outlets begging for attention has become another vestige of a fast-disappearing era, as is a movement's dependence on traditional media to report on the most critical elements of any protest.

"Nekima Levy-Pounds, president of the Minneapolis NAACP and a professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law, has been active in the local Black Lives Matter movement since its inception, and was one of the most prominent spokespeople during the Clark protests. At 39, Levy¬-Pounds has feet in both old and new schools of protest tactics and rhetoric.

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"She says circumventing traditional media, especially local media, is now essential to insuring that the full breadth and depth of the issues motivating a protest are heard, or at least widely available.

"One key is drawing in national media as a way to apply competitive pressure on local reporters to improve their game, a tactic made easier in the Clark protests by the intense interest and coverage of the Michael Brown killing in Ferguson, Missouri, Freddie Gray in Baltimore and others.

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" 'It's usually a challenge if you're relying only on local media to cover major stories of racial injustice,' she said. 'And the reason is because most of the reporters are white, and their managers are white, and the audiences they're reporting for are mostly white. Therefore, they may think they're being fair, but their reporting reinforces a very mainstream view of protests, for example emphasizing disruption as much if not more than the issues, like chronic police misconduct, something white audiences have almost no personal experience with.'

"Also, you know, the presence of the national media means an opportunity to present a different narrative, because they are talking to a more diverse audience. . . . "

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Feliks Garcia, ntrsctn.com: The rise and fall of Shaun King, former Black Lives Matter darling

Kristen Hare, Poynter Institute: First Amendment lessons from the protests at Mizzou (Jan. 22)

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Frederick H. Lowe, NorthStarNews.Today/Blackmansstreet.Today: Chicago Pays Up: $5.5 million Reparations for Wrongly Convicted Black Men

Media Said to Downplay Asian American Problems

"African-American students and others at MU were quite vocal last fall in protesting a climate of racism and discrimination on campus," Sean Na reported Wednesday for the Columbia Missourian.

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"Their continued demonstrations, including Concerned Student 1950's protest during the Homecoming parade and its days-long campout on the Mel Carnahan Quadrangle, helped lead to the resignation of former University of Missouri System President Tim Wolfe and, in part, to then-MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin.

"Although MU's Asian students will say anecdotally that they experience the same types of racist episodes that African-Americans do, they also are reluctant to report them. Russell Hsu, a third-year journalism student and vice president of the Taiwanese Student Association, said one reason for the generally passive attitude of Asian students is their 'fear of persecution' from non-Asian peers.

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" 'We don’t have that many people whom we know anyway,' Hsu said. 'So, our social circles are a lot tighter. So, you don't want to offend anybody and (get) everything broken up.'

"Zack Morrison is president of the Asian American Association, the largest Asian student organization at MU. He said the media's portrayal of Asians and the way Asian parents raise their children might explain why Asians' concerns are under-reported.

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" 'It ties back to representation in the media,' Morrison said. 'We are always treated as the silent model minority. We always have to do good. We have to be the best at math, and we can't be troublemakers.' . . ."

Sinclair Establishes $500G Scholarship Fund for Minorities

"Sinclair Broadcast Group has established a $500,000 scholarship fund to help minority students finance their undergraduate studies related to broadcasting or journalism," TVNewsCheck reported Wednesday.

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" 'This fund complements our existing widespread internship program,' said Don Thompson, Sinclair SVP of human resources. 'We have long-standing relationships with numerous colleges, including historically black colleges and universities in markets where we have stations. These relationships are a great source for talent, and many student interns become full-time employees.

"This scholarship fund is another way for us to invest in the future of broadcast television, by ensuring that students dedicated to careers in broadcasting can complete their educations.'

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"Sinclair's goal is to distribute up to $50,000 per year in grants of up to $5,000 each. The fund is open to minority students enrolled at an accredited four-year college and who have a demonstrated financial need. Additional qualifications will be set forth in the scholarship application, which will be available this spring on the Sinclair website (www.sbgi.net). The first grants will be awarded by the summer of 2016, applicable toward fall 2016 tuition. . . ."

Photographer Captures "Humanity" of Colombia's FARC

"The guerrillas of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, known as FARC, have been at war against the Colombian state for five decades, one of the word’s longest-running insurgencies," Kirk Semple reported Tuesday for the New York Times "Lens" blog.

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"The conflict has killed hundreds of thousands of people, displaced millions, cost the state many billions of dollars, fractured the nation and destabilized the entire region.

"But negotiations that began in Havana in 2012 have now brought the possibility of peace into sharper focus than ever. The sides have reached tentative agreements on a range of key issues and set a March 23 deadline for a final deal.

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"Since the talks began, Federico Rios, 35, a Colombian photographer who lives in Medellín, has made several trips into the Colombian hinterlands to spend time with the rebels and photograph them. His aim, he said, was to demystify them and 'capture the humanity' of the group's fighters during what may well be the insurgency’s final days before they lay down their arms. . . ."

Short Takes

"The Flint water crisis is the latest and most striking example of how holes in the state's sunshine laws have sharply reduced transparency between citizens and elected officials," Annie Byrnes reported Tuesday for the Poynter Institute. "Even before Flint made national news, Michigan was in the spotlight for its lack of transparency. In the Center for Public Integrity's 2015 State Integrity Study, the state came in dead last — 50th — and earned 'F' grades in 10 of 13 categories including public access to information and executive accountability. . . . "

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"During an address following his first presidential visit to an American mosque, President Barack Obama said that there needed to be more Muslim characters on television in a context other than terrorism," Alex Griswold reported Wednesday for Mediaite. Obama, visiting the Islamic Society of Baltimore, "told the audience about conversations he had earlier with young Muslims. 'They were pointing out that so often they felt invisible, and part of what we have to do is to lift up the contributions of the Muslim-American community not when there's a problem, but all the time.' . . ."

"The companies behind the major motion picture 'Spotlight,' Open Road Films and Participant Media, with support from First Look Media, are sponsoring a fellowship of up to $100,000 to be awarded by The Boston Globe for one or more individuals or teams of journalists to work on in-depth research and reporting projects," the companies announced on Tuesday. "The chosen investigative journalist(s) will collaborate with established reporters and editors from The Boston Globe's Pulitzer Prize-winning Spotlight Team. To apply go to www.spotlightfellowship.com.

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During TV One's live telecast of the 47th Annual NAACP Image Awards on Friday, TV One "will be re-presented to viewers in a bold, new way," the network announced Wednesday. The re-presentation will include "a comprehensive creative overhaul of the network's on-air and off-air brand elements, such as the tagline, logo, promos and its website. . . "  

"MSNBC anchor and Wake Forest University professor Melissa Harris-Perry was in her Iowa hotel lobby on Monday night when she said a man came dangerously close to her, threatening her incoherently and invoking Nazi Germany," Willa Frej reported Wednesday for the Huffington Post. "She traveled to Iowa with a group of 22 Wake Forest students as part of the university's 'Wake the Vote' program. The students were out watching the caucus results unfold. . . ."

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"KGTV says the doctor for the San Diego reporter injured after a live shot about storm damage on Monday is saying 'it's a "mystery" she wasn’t paralyzed,' " Kevin Eck reported Wednesday for TVSpy. "The San Diego ABC affiliate posted an update on reporter Marie Coronel and photographer Mike Gold. The two were injured when a tree fell on them while they were reporting for the morning show. The station says Coronel, who suffered multiple spinal injuries and a concussion, is thankful it wasn't worse. She will have surgery on Thursday. . . ."

Jasmine Turner of Howard University is a $1,000 winner in the radio news and features competition of the William Randolph Hearst Foundation's 2015-2016 Journalism Awards Program. As a fifth-place winner, Turner qualifies for the 2016 Hearst Journalism Awards Championship in June, along with television, writing, photojournalism and multimedia finalists.

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In Chicago, "A cameraman for WBBM-Channel 2 was robbed at gunpoint Tuesday night while on assignment in San Francisco for the CBS-owned station" (accessible via search engine) , Robert Feder reported on his blog. "Marcus Richardson, who was covering preparations for the upcoming Super Bowl, reported he was photographing a 'beauty shot' (TV news slang for a scenic image) when a gunman held him up. 'They took everything,' Richardson wrote on Facebook. 'I am at a complete loss for words and I am sad beyond belief. This is the lowest I've ever been doing this job.' . . ."

"A group of just over 100 men and women, all devoted to promoting the positive contributions and aspects of the Black press, attended the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) Mid-Winter Conference last week in Miami, where the main topic was finding ways to retool and revitalize the group whose over [200 members], all owners of Black newspapers in America, have been addressing news relevant to and impacting the Black community following a tradition established in 1827 with the publishing of the '[Freedom's] Journal' — the nation’s first Black newspaper," D. Kevin McNeir reported Wednesday for the Washington Informer and the NNPA News Wire.

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Ruben Garcia Jr., a senior pursuing degrees in journalism and advertising at the University of Oregon, has won the Radio Television Digital News Foundation's Carole Simpson scholarship, it was announced Wednesday. Simpson, a former ABC-TV anchor who served on the foundation's board of trustees, established the scholarship "to encourage and help minority students overcome hurdles along their career path."

The Committee to Protect Journalists said Tuesday that it "strongly condemns the decision of the government in Equatorial Guinea to ban state television from covering the trial of former Ivory Coast leader Laurent Gbagbo, which opened at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague on January 28. 'We've been forbidden from airing Laurent Gbagbo's trial due to his friendship with our president,' a journalist with the state television channel Radio Télévision Guinée équatoriale told AFP. . . ."

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In Zimbabwe, "Journalists who criminally defame people in the course of their work cannot be arrested because Section 96 of the Criminal Law Codification and Reform Act is a dead law, said the Constitutional Court," the Herald in Harare reported. "Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku, sitting with eight other judges, granted an application by the Media Institute of Southern Africa (Zimbabwe Chapter) and ruled that the law had since its promulgation in 2004 been an invalid law. . . ."

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