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The Media/Journalism Thread


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I stopped using Google's search engine (although, unfortunately, I still use Gmail) over a year ago because I think many of Google's methods of tracking users are so distasteful and unethical.

 

Also, regarding Buzzfeed-- I'm surprised that they are making the same mistakes that many tech companies made during the 'dotcom' boom and bust era.  I guess, in a way, I'm not truly surprised but it is perplexing to watch supposedly genius people make the same mistakes over and over, seemingly not learning from other industries' mistakes and outcomes (or even a previous iteration of their same industry).

 

I posted this article in the R. Kelly thread but it is worth reading in the context of journalism's strengths (e.g. a dogged investigative reporter)  vs. media's failures (dropping/ignoring an important story because it features marginalized groups of people or challenges an entire power structure).

 

This quote from the article truly struck me because I have felt it keenly throughout moments of my life.

 

“Black women have had a steady drumbeat around R. Kelly, even when it wasn’t a huge story,” Ms. Solomon said. “But part of the reason why nobody has listened is about how black girls are devalued and the labor of black women journalists is devalued as well.”

 

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It’s very tricky with BuzzFeed because a lot of their big bets have paid off somewhat, and they may survive and even “thrive” after all of this bloodletting. They are looking to merge with another big digital media giant, and we shall see how that goes. I have no clue really. No one has really figured out the $$$$ thing beyond the biggest names. 

 

 

 

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The consolidation of media companies—which was aided by federal deregulation—and subsequent closure of local papers has had an impact on the next generation of writers and reporters as well. Local dailies used to be training grounds for ambitious young reporters, who would work a beat at a daily or weekly for a few years, learn the trade, and then maybe move on to a regional or national publication. When those local papers closed up, so did their farm teams. Now, the ambitious young journalist may go directly from college to a website like BuzzFeed or Vice, where they won’t be covering school board meetings or city council races. Instead, the writer is encouraged to develop his or her own "brand" and is rewarded by being big, voicey, and outlandish. Those, after all, are the kinds of stories that actually generate readership.

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It's funny seeing Anne Helen Petersen's name in here, as it was her needlessly lengthy and oddly embittered slogs against actors she saw as too Hollywood and unworthy of her seal of approval (like Ben Affleck, Tom Hanks, and Arme Hammer) that made me realize just how truly pretentious and shallow Buzzfeed was. I've seen some of her more recent work, like her article on millennials, and it is stronger, but that wasn't the type of journalism Buzzfeed wanted so it's too little too late.

 

I'm not sure why Katie Herzog needs to give Dave Rubin publicity, but given that she's a big fan of Ellen Degeneres, I can see where she may be a fan of another soulless, sellout gay who cowtows for bigots. 

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10 hours ago, DRW50 said:

It's funny seeing Anne Helen Petersen's name in here, as it was her needlessly lengthy and oddly embittered slogs against actors she saw as too Hollywood and unworthy of her seal of approval (like Ben Affleck, Tom Hanks, and Arme Hammer) that made me realize just how truly pretentious and shallow Buzzfeed was. I've seen some of her more recent work, like her article on millennials, and it is stronger, but that wasn't the type of journalism Buzzfeed wanted so it's too little too late.

 

I'm not sure why Katie Herzog needs to give Dave Rubin publicity, but given that she's a big fan of Ellen Degeneres, I can see where she may be a fan of another soulless, sellout gay who cowtows for bigots. 

I’d missed the article on millennials, but I just read it, and it is indeed pretty good.

 

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I was reading the NYT's piece about Mary Poppins and blackface (I am not going to link because they chose to make it desperate clickbait). It's pretty sad, and sums up how hollowed out that paper has become in search of revenue. Publicity at any cost. 

 

The article itself is decent enough, as they mostly speak about the racist and racially charged material in Mary Poppins (more the books than the movies). It certainly told me a few things I didn't know. 

 

Unfortunately, they chose to go with a headline about Mary Poppins and a Shameful History of Blackface, with a still from the movie that had Mary with chimney soot on her face. Most of which did not even have anything to do with the points in the article. 

 

They went for cheap attention and overshadowed any points the article might have made. 

 

Choices like this are why the NYT has become such a joke to so many people.

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Today in NY Times angst:

 

 

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1 minute ago, DRW50 said:

Isn't Vice hellish behind the scenes?

Indeed. It’s a well-documented sh!tshow, which had been run by fratboys. One of my former interns worked there and shared many, many horror stories. Basically it sounded like Wolf of Wall Street to an extent. They’ve been trying to turn over a new leaf under Nancy Dubuc from A&E.

 

Speaking of Vice - Happy Friday!

 

 

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