- Journalism Groups Say Broadcaster Crossed Line
- ICE Seizes Memphis Reporter as Undocumented
- U.S. to Become ‘Minority White’ in 2045
- Lest the Media Forget the Other Civil Rights Leaders
- Greg Moore ‘Angry’ Over Plight of Denver Post
- BuzzFeed Headline Led to Trump Tweet, Critic Says
- More Coverage Given Alleged Violence by Muslims
- Gaza Journalist Fatally Shot Covering Protests
- Short Takes
Journalism Groups Say Broadcaster Crossed Line
As criticism rains down on Sinclair Broadcast Group for ordering dozens of its news anchors to read a Trump-friendly script about “fake stories,” some are wondering whether the nation’s largest owner of television stations will face consequences beyond statements of disapproval.
“Last April, the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Ajit Pai, led the charge for his agency to approve rules allowing television broadcasters to greatly increase the number of stations they own,” as Cecilia Kang reported Feb. 15 for the New York Times.
“A few weeks later, Sinclair Broadcasting announced a blockbuster $3.9 billion deal to buy Tribune Media — a deal those new rules made possible. . . . A union of Sinclair and Tribune would create the nation’s biggest television broadcaster, reaching seven out of 10 American homes. . . .”
It is not known whether the latest controversy will affect approval of the merger, but the top internal watchdog for the FCC had already opened an investigation into “whether Pai and his aides had improperly pushed for the rule changes and whether they had timed them to benefit Sinclair, according to Representative Frank Pallone of New Jersey and two congressional aides,” Kang wrote.
On Friday, deans and department chairs from 13 universities sent a letter of protest to Sinclair, “condemning the company for forcing anchors at its nearly 200 stations to read a statement accusing other news outlets of publishing ‘fake news,’ “ as Al Tompkins reported for the Poynter Institute.
“The letter, addressed to Sinclair Executive Chairman David D. Smith[,] was signed by the head of journalism schools at the University of Maryland, Syracuse University, Louisiana State University, University of Georgia, University of Mississippi, Temple University, Ohio University, University of Arizona, University of Southern California, University of California - Berkeley, University of Illinois, The George Washington University and Morgan State University. . . .”
That statement followed worried expressions from the National Press Photographers Association; SAG-AFTRA, which represents thousands of TV journalists; the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and the Radio Television Digital News Association, among others.
Separately, the Society of Professional Journalists called attention to statements by Smith, who said “he dislikes and fundamentally distrusts the print media, which he believes ‘serves no real purpose,’ as Olivia Nuzzi reported April 3 for New York magazine. ”In emails to New York, Smith said that print — as in newspapers and magazines — is a reality-distorting tool of leftists. Print media, he said, has ‘no credibility’ and no relevance. . . .”Alison Bethel McKenzie (pictured left), SPJ’s new executive director, told Journal-isms by email, “You say that we are very concerned about what the CEO had to say about the newspaper media. We sent an open letter to Smith and he has agreed to meet with us.”
The joint NABJ-NAHJ statement, issued Wednesday, said that “NAHJ President Brandon Benavides, Executive Director Alberto B. Mendoza and NABJ President Sarah Glover spoke by phone with Sinclair President and Chief Executive Officer Christopher Riley and Senior Vice President of News Scott Livingston following the media backlash.
“The company officials said Sinclair’s ‘must-read’ message read by anchors at its local television stations last week got lost in translation and the backlash was a ‘teaching moment.’ . . .
Livingston described the must-read scripts as “a message of integrity, accuracy that fit perfectly with our local brand and editorial mission,” according to the statement.
Rebecca Aguilar, a broadcast and digital journalist who served on the NAHJ board for six years, told Facebook followers that she was “beyond disappointment” over the statement. “[N]othing was accomplished but the company was allowed to give their ‘corporate spin.’
“Both organizations missed a good opportunity to tell Sinclair that we are journalists, and our jobs are to inform the public, NOT spew slanted, conservative points of view. We cannot worry about the money they give us to fund our conferences. We are here for the journalists first.
“If they allow Sinclair at the conferences we are only hurting our members because the organizations are purposely sending the members to a company that is unethical and [biased] and will take you to court if you dare try to leave. “Our members deserve better. . . . If Sinclair goes to the conference, I will not attend.”
The NABJ-NAHJ statement said, “Sinclair will be recruiting at the NAHJ Convention in Miami and the NABJ Convention in Detroit this year.” The Native American Journalists Association is partnering with NAHJ this year and will share career fair space. The standard fee for recruiting booths is $3,500, according to the NAHJ prospectus [PDF].
Benavides, NAHJ president, responded “no comment” when asked Saturday whether NAHJ would continue to allow Sinclair at the convention if its policies remain.
Sinclair Broadcast Group has committed to two booths at the NABJ career fair, Executive Director Sharon Toomer told Journal-isms. However, it has not been at the Asian American Journalists Association since 2014, Executive Director Kathy Chow said.
Bethel McKenzie said of Sinclair’s presence at its conference, “No deal has been struck and the SPJ board will discuss the issue of Sinclair at its board meeting this weekend.” Sinclair is a corporate member of RTDNA, which is holding its “Excellence in Journalism” convention with SPJ.
[On Tuesday, Mekahlo Medina, immediate past NAHJ president, called on the NAHJ leadership “to boycott Sinclair this year until they provide a plan with action points and clear deliverables in how they will bring their newsrooms and boardrooms up to the diverse standards of 2018: 18% Latino, 13% African American, 6% Asian and 50% female.”
[Medina wrote on his Facebook page, “If NAHJ is worried about losing the $3500 sponsorship from Sinclair, I’m sure our members . . . can raise that money on our own and save the integrity of NAHJ. I’m in for $100. Who else is in?”]
DeWayne Wickham, dean of the Morgan State University School of Global Journalism and Communication and one of the signatories of the statement of concern from the journalism deans and directors, took something positive from the NABJ-NAHJ statement.
Asked whether Morgan State would continue to send students to Sinclair, Wickham replied by email, “It will depend on Sinclair’s response. I am encouraged by what one of Sinclair’s top executives told NABJ and NAHJ. (He called what happened ‘a teachable moment.’)“
Sinclair can be punitive toward its critics, as the National Press Photographers Association noted Thursday.
“Yesterday, NPPA made a statement regarding recent comments and coordinated messaging about the media made by Sinclair Broadcast Group, it announced.
If job-seekers at Saturday’s Journalism Job Fair in Washington are any indication, Sinclair is still drawing applicants. “It’s just like any organization,” said Alvin Frank, a Washington area student standing in line to see Sinclair recruiter Kevin Olivas.
“It would have to be a conversation,” said another in line who did not want to be identified, asked about Sinclair’s must-read dictates to anchors.
“That didn’t stop me,” said Dominique Youngblood of Georgetown University. “I’m also a graduate student who needs a job.” Practices like those at Sinclair “can happen anywhere.”
Olivas said by email afterward, “I only had one person ask me about the story and they simply said they heard about it, but still noticed I had a long line of people waiting to talk with me about opportunities at Sinclair and Circa,” Sinclair’s national news site.
“I talked to 18 people, but because of time there were about three others I was not able to talk to during the job fair itself.”
Natasha Bach, Fortune: Amy Schumer Jumps On the Sinclair Boycott Bandwagon
Hal Boedeker, Orlando Sentinel: Orlando man shares Sinclair saga on CNN’s ‘Reliable Sources’
Timothy Burke, Deadspin: How America’s Largest Local TV Owner Turned Its News Anchors Into Soldiers In Trump’s War On The Media (March 31)
Christi Carras, Variety: Sinclair Producer Resigns in Protest Amid Backlash Over ‘Fake News’ Script
Rick Christie, Palm Beach Post: Post readers react to Sinclair, WPEC ‘fake news’ editorial
Sydney Ember, New York Times: Sinclair’s Boss Responds to Criticism: ‘You Can’t Be Serious!’
Paul Farhi, Washington Post: Sinclair faces fallout from viewers and Democratic candidates over ‘fake news’ promos
Lydia O’Connor, HuffPost: Journalism School Backlash Against Media Giant Sinclair Grows
Eli Rosenberg, Washington Post: Sinclair commentator resigns after vulgar tweet about Parkland survivor David Hogg
Brian Stelter, CNN Money: Sinclair allows critical ad to air, sandwiched between its defense
Pete Vernon, Columbia Journalism Review: Sinclair circles the wagons as former employees speak out
Armstrong Williams, Broadcasting & Cable: The Sinister Case Against Sinclair Broadcast Group
ICE Seizes Memphis Reporter as Undocumented
“Journalist Manuel Duran was arrested for doing his job: For exercising his First Amendment rights,” the Tennessean in Nashville editorialized on Friday, updated Saturday.
“He now he faces deportation from the United States.
“The 42-year-old Salvadoran immigrant was live-streaming demonstrators in Memphis protesting immigration detention and enforcement policies on Tuesday when he was wrongfully detained.
“Duran’s status as an undocumented immigrant complicated his release from Shelby County jail, but prosecutors eventually dropped the charges.
“Unfortunately, Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents were waiting in court to seize him.
“He will likely be booted out of what has become his home unless ICE releases him. The federal agency should free him because Duran should never have been arrested.
“It is a difficult case, exposing a broken immigration system that makes it hard for undocumented residents who want to contribute to their communities but cannot earn their legal status. . . .”
Duran has been transferred to an immigration detention center in Louisiana, his attorney said, Daniel Connolly reported Thursday for the Commercial Appeal in Memphis, updated Friday.
U.S. to Become ‘Minority White’ in 2045
“New census population projections confirm the importance of racial minorities as the primary demographic engine of the nation’s future growth, countering an aging, slow-growing and soon to be declining white population,” William H. Frey reported March 14 for the Brookings Institution.
“The new statistics project that the nation will become ‘minority white’ in 2045. During that year, whites will comprise 49.9 percent of the population in contrast to 24.6 percent for Hispanics, 13.1 percent for blacks, 7.8 percent for Asians, and 3.8 percent for multiracial populations.
“The shift is the result of two trends. First, between 2018 and 2060, gains will continue in the combined racial minority populations, growing by 74 percent. Second, during this time frame, the aging white population will see a modest immediate gain through 2023, and then experience a long-term decline through 2060, a consequence of more deaths than births. . . .”
Angela Chen, HuffPost: A Snapshot Of How Asian-Americans Are Changing The South (March 28)
Michael Malone, Broadcasting & Cable: Multicultural TV: Minorities Becoming Majority, Says ‘Taken From the Headlines’ Panel (April 3)
Lest the Media Forget the Other Civil Rights Leaders
“When you think of the Civil Rights Movement, you likely think of Martin Luther King Jr. — for good reason. The role he played was monumental — and because of that, monuments have been erected, pages in textbooks set aside and a national holiday named in his honor,” Noah Hubbell wrote in 2013 for the Denver alternative newspaper Westword.
“So much attention has been given this single icon, it’s easy to forget that the hard work of countless individuals, not just one man, made the fight for civil rights in the mid-century a movement. . . .”
That attention was on display last week, on the 50th anniversary of King’s assassination, as tasteful and thoughtful tributes to King’s accomplishments dominated the news media on April 4.
“NBC Nightly News” anchor Lester Holt, referring to King, characterized the civil rights struggle as “the movement he led.”
In fact, King led one piece of the civil rights movement, but others co-existed with different approaches and had their own leaders. Collectively, they were known as the “Big Six.”
One was Whitney Young Jr., leader of the National Urban League, whose niece produced a documentary in 2013 called “The Powerbroker: Whitney Young’s Fight for Civil Rights” to acquaint viewers with a man who believed that jobs and business connections were the path toward civil rights. Young has been forgotten, niece Bonnie Boswell said, though the Urban League and its mission continue.
Boswell told Journal-isms by email over the weekend, “Ossie Davis said he would never tell a young person to become another Martin Luther King or Malcolm [X] (because they were too iconic) but he said he could advise them to become another Whitney Young because Whitney Young understood America was about business and we needed to have a practical approach when dealing with America. Also ordinary people could follow the path of a Whitney Young.”
Hubbell also wrote, “Young worked with Lyndon Johnson very closely to develop the war on poverty and the Great Society,’ says Lauren Casteel, vice president for Philanthropic Partnerships at the Denver Foundation, Young’s daughter and cousin of The Powerbroker’s filmmaker, Bonnie Boswell.
“Lyndon Johnson’s leadership around poverty and race relations was to a large degree based upon his relationship in particular with [Young], who had a vision that was known as the Domestic Marshall Plan...based on the way that we rebuilt Germany after World War II, that there would be a rebuilding of blighted communities and people who had been ravaged by poverty and discrimination.
“ ‘I think it’s always important in history to see as many contributions and different approaches — and I think in particular for the civil rights movement — to recognize many leaders,’ says Casteel. ‘Oftentimes, we will create one icon, and people don’t realize, for example, that A. Philip Randolph was the one who initiated and came up with the inspiration for the  March on Washington.’
“As for the Big Six, ‘A. Philip Randolph brought labor,’ she continues, ‘Martin Luther King brought the church, John Lewis and James Farmer brought students and young people, Roy Wilkins brought legal expertise...and I think there’s an inspiration for the roles that each of us can play individually as well as collectively.’ . . . “
Paul Delaney, who covered parts of the civil rights movement for the New York Times, said of King by email, “he was not the beginning or end of civil rights & i’m concerned about ignoring others, as ex-civil rights reporter. . . .i think it’s easier for all — media — to concentrate on one subject than try & explain roy & whitney & a philip, et al & how they fit into c.r. history.”
Julian Bond, the late Georgia state representative, NAACP chair and professor of civil rights history, used to fault the way the civil rights movement is taught: “Rosa Parks sat down, Martin Luther King stood up and the white folks saved the day.”
Jenice Armstrong, Philadelphia Daily News: Hearing the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speak in 1958 ignited fire in him that still burns
The Atlantic: The Atlantic’s KING: Original Essays from Special Edition Released Online (March 1)
Tony Briscoe, Ese Olumhense and William Lee, Chicago Tribune: We asked for your 1968 riot stories. You responded.
Earl Caldwell, Daily News, New York: Earl Caldwell, lone reporter on scene when Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, reflects on murder of civil rights icon
Jarvis DeBerry, NOLA.com | Times-Picayune: Some of Martin Luther King’s adversaries began praising him as soon as he died
Jarvis DeBerry, NOLA.com | Times-Picayune: Police shootings 50 years after Martin Luther King show we haven’t overcome
Editorial, Kansas City Star: An overdue honor: KC needs to step up and rename The Paseo for Martin Luther King Jr. (April 3)
Renée Graham, Boston Globe: After Martin Luther King’s death, James Brown calmed a tense Boston
Suzette Hackney, Indianapolis Star: A letter to Martin Luther King Jr.: ‘Your fight remains unfinished’
Derrick Johnson, National Newspaper Publishers Association: MLK50: Fifty Years after Kerner and King, Racism Still Matters
Roy S. Johnson, al.com: Addressing poverty, MLK’s final campaign, will honor him and lift us all
Maroon Tiger, Morehouse College: Special King edition: King: A Great Morehouse Man Remembered 50 Years Later (April 3)
Mary Mitchell, Chicago Sun-Times: In parts of Chicago, the aftermath of King’s assassination still reverberates
Jonathan M. Pitts, Baltimore Sun: Martin Luther King Jr.’s death changed lives — and Baltimore’s civil rights movement
Joy-Ann Reid, Daily Beast: The Black Lives Matter Deaths That Preceded Dr. King’s
Rochelle Riley, Detroit Free Press: To honor Martin Luther King, listen to his ENTIRE dream speech
E.R. Shipp, Afro-American: The Black Press and the Baltimore ’68 Riot
Times Insider, New York Times: The Lone Journalist on the Scene When King Was Shot and the Newsroom He Rallied (April 3)
Greg Moore ‘Angry’ Over Plight of Denver Post
“People constantly ask me how I feel about the deep cuts and layoffs that have been chipping away at The Denver Post,” Gregory L. Moore, editor of the Post from 2002 to 2016, wrote Friday for the Post. It was part of an extraordinary effort by the paper’s journalists to fight for the paper’s survival.
“Well, I’m sad but I’m also angry,” Moore continued.
“I left in March 2016 after 14 years as editor because I was done laying off journalists. At the time, I referenced a staff photograph hanging in our vestibule and said far too many folks in it were gone. Enough was enough.
“Naively, I hoped my departure might stanch the bleeding. I’m sad because it has continued, and I’m angry because I now realize The Post might not endure.
“We were a pretty good newspaper for a real long time (winning nine Pulitzer Prizes over our 125-year history). We have provided a rich variety of news, opinion and information every day. I will miss it if it is gone. We all will.
“The journalists who remain will try their best, as they always have. But there is just so much they can do with the dwindling resources they have. If the paper’s demise comes to pass, there will never be another Denver Post.
“The question is whether we who care about quality journalism will let it happen. . . .”
Moore is editor in chief at Deke Digital, an “expert media” company based in Wheat Ridge, Colo.
The newspaper editorialized Friday, updating Sunday. “At The Denver Post on Monday, more than two dozen reporters, editors, photographers, videographers, page designers, digital producers and opinion staff will walk out the door. Our marching orders are to cut a full 30 by the start of July,” the editorial said.
“These heartbreaking instructions raise the question: Does this cut, which follows so many in recent years that our ranks have shriveled from more than 250 to fewer than 100 today, represent the beginning of the end for the Voice of the Rocky Mountain Empire?
“The cuts, backed by our owner, the New York City hedge fund Alden Global Capital, also are a mystery, if you look at them from the point of view of those of us intent on running a serious news operation befitting the city that bears our name. Media experts locally and nationally question why our future looks so bleak, as many newspapers still enjoy double-digit profits and our management reported solid profits as recently as last year.
“We call for action. Consider this editorial and this Sunday’s Perspective offerings a plea to Alden — owner of Digital First Media, one of the largest newspaper chains in the country — to rethink its business strategy across all its newspaper holdings. . . .”
BuzzFeed Headline Led to Trump Tweet, Critic Says
An “unfortunate” BuzzFeed headline about a “caravan” of migrants moving through Mexico on their way to the United States quickly morphed into a sensationalized “Fox and Friends” story that led to President Trump’s alarmist tweet that the migrants were endangering the United States and must be stopped, the host of the WNYC show “On the Media” said on the program’s latest installment (audio).
BuzzFeed told Journal-isms that it stood by the accuracy of its headline, “A Huge Caravan Of Central Americans Is Headed For the US, And No One in Mexico Dares to Stop Them.”
“On the Media” host Brooke Gladstone of WNYC-FM in New York told Journal-isms, through spokesperson Camille Ortiz, “We have no particular problem with the reporting of the story. It’s the headline we take issue with, especially the word ‘dare.’ As the story notes, the response to the migrants was often kind and generous.
“Others on the scene told us that the authorities could be harsh, but nowhere does Buzzfeed’s reporter, or any of the other eyewitnesses we consulted suggest there was the kind of fearful response the word ‘dare’ implies.
“Also, the Buzzfeed report noted (confirmed to us by others on the scene) that many of the migrants planned to ask for asylum in Mexico, others in the US, and some intended to cross illegally. The headline depicts an army storming the border.
“I called it ‘unfortunate’ because it was sensational, a distortion used to create a narrative of fear. In crafting the headline, Buzzfeed cherry-picked and decontexualized the work of its own reporter, which, given the fine work Buzzfeed has done lately, was pretty disappointing.”
BuzzFeed spokeswoman Katie Rayford replied to Journal-isms, “BuzzFeed News’s detailed and contextualized reporting from Mexico has been integral to the public’s understanding of what’s happening on the ground with the caravan, and we’re perplexed as to why WNYC has characterized our headline as ‘unfortunate.’
“Our headline was an accurate representation of how this story was unfolding at the time the report was written and published, and it is the host of NPR’s On The Media, not a BuzzFeed News reporter, who is using the phrase ‘army storming the border’ to refer to the caravan.”
In his weekly news column in the Washington Post, political reporter Dan Balz cited Trump’s comments on the migration as the latest example of Trump’s “loose adherence to the truth.”
“Then there was the president’s week-long obsession with the ‘caravan’ of migrants heading from Central America into Mexico and, as he tweeted, threatening to come across what he suggested was the porous U.S.-Mexico border,” Balz wrote. “He made it sound like an invading army marching north. ‘ “Caravans’ coming,’ he tweeted at the beginning of the week. ‘Republicans must go to Nuclear Option to pass tough laws NOW.’ . . .
“He later tweeted, ‘Caravans are heading here. Must pass tough laws and build the WALL. Democrats allow open borders, drugs and crime!’ He said the caravan was heading toward ‘our “Weak Laws” Border.’ He then decided that, in the absence of the wall, he would order the National Guard to the border. . . .”
Balz also wrote, “On the day Trump was speaking, the caravan was beginning to break up. Some in the group were intent on reaching the border with the United States, where they hoped to be able to seek asylum. But others had no intention of staging the kind of invasion the president seemed to believe was imminent. The caravan appeared to be the same as it has been in recent years: no major threat. . . .”
Charles M. Blow, New York Times: Horror of Being Governed by ‘Fox & Friends’
Brooke Gladstone, “On the Media,” WNYC-FM New York: How Trump Learned About The Caravan (audio)
Daniel González, Arizona Republic: How Central American migrant caravan grew so big and unintentionally may have backfired
Dara Linddara, vox.com: Migrant caravans, Trump’s latest immigration obsession, explained
Kate Linthicum, Los Angeles Times: These are the Central American migrants in Trump’s crosshairs
Brian Stelter, “Reliable Sources,” CNN: Trump’s top source of intel: Fox News? (video)
Michael Warren, Weekly Standard: Johnny One-Note
More Coverage Given Alleged Violence by Muslims
“American courts treat Muslims differently, a new study says,” Murtaza Hussain reported Thursday for the Intercept.
“Among perpetrators of ideologically motivated violent plots, those who were perceived to be Muslim received sentences that were four times longer than non-Muslims involved in similar cases. The disproportionality carried over into the court of public opinion, too: Cases of attempted violence by Muslims received 7½ times more coverage from major media outlets, while successful plots were covered twice as much.
“These findings are contained in a new report, titled ‘Equal Treatment? Measuring the Legal and Media Responses to Ideologically Motivated Violence in the United States,’ released on Thursday by the Washington-based Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, or ISPU. Built on years of research on cases of planned or successfully executed acts of ideological violence in the U.S., the report highlights glaring discrepancies in the way the judicial system and media treat such acts, depending on the background of the suspected perpetrator. . . .”
Gaza Journalist Fatally Shot Covering Protests
“Yaser Murtaja had often filmed from the sky, but he never lived to fulfill his dream of flying on an airplane through the clouds,” Loveday Morris reported Saturday for the Washington Post.
“The young journalist shot drone images and video for Ain Media, a small Gaza-based news agency he started five years ago. Just two weeks ago, he posted an aerial photo of Gaza City’s port on Facebook.
“ ‘I wish that the day would come to take this shot when I’m in the air and not on the ground,’ he wrote. ‘My name is Yaser Murtaja. I’m 30 years old. I live in Gaza City. I’ve never traveled!’
“It was one of his last posts.
“Murtaja, who was married and had a 2-year-old son, died Saturday after being shot the day before while covering protests at the edge of the Gaza Strip.
“His work had appeared on networks such as Al Jazeera, and in 2016 he worked as a cameraman for Ai Weiwei’s documentary, ‘Human Flow,’ which covered the global refugee crisis, including Palestinians in Gaza. The Chinese visual artist posted photos of Murtaja on his Instagram account on Saturday. . . .”
Morris also wrote, “Murtaja was laid to rest Saturday in the land he never left. His body was carried through the streets of Gaza City draped in a Palestinian flag and the blue-and-white vest marked ‘PRESS’ that he was wearing when he was shot. . . .
“Murtaja, whom friends and family described as ambitious and always smiling, was one of nine people fatally shot on Friday after Israeli troops used live ammunition as tens of thousands of Palestinians gathered to protest at the heavily guarded boundary with Israel.
“Five other journalists were injured by live fire, as well, according to the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate. They were clearly identifiable as journalists, the syndicate said, raising further questions over Israel’s insistence that its use of snipers on the crowds at the border is carefully targeted. . . .”
International Federation of Journalists: Palestine: IFJ demands justice following the killing of a journalist in Gaza
Yaniv Kubovich and Almog Ben Zikri, Haaretz, Israel: Lieberman Accused Palestinian Photographer Killed in Gaza of Operating Drone Despite Lack of Evidence
- “Gizmodo Media Group’s top executive is exiting the company — a sign that parent Univision plans to get more directly involved with its flagship digital media property as it weighs deep cuts,” Maxwell Tani reported Monday for the Daily Beast. “The Daily Beast has learned that GMG CEO Raju Narisetti has been pushed out, amid a larger business review following the company’s decision to scuttle its planned initial public offering earlier this year. . . .” Narisetti is a diversity advocate. Last year, Gizmodo sent a report to employees that included a detailed breakdown of racial and gender diversity across the company.
- “Entravision continues to shrink news production teams in its stations, continuing a push towards hubbed news and potentially opening the door for Telemundo newscasts to gain ground in the cities where they compete,” Veronica Villafañe reported Monday for her Media Moves site. “According to multiple sources, Entravision executed massive cuts nationwide last Friday, April 6, affecting Las Vegas, McAllen, [Texas,] El Paso, Denver, Washington, D.C., and Laredo [Texas]. The local newscast at KINC Las Vegas was effectively shut down and ‘shipped’ to El Paso. . . .”
- Being the only Latino in the room means that “while the white men get to disagree with each other and develop idiosyncratic or counterintuitive arguments, you can never just say how you feel or what you think about a story,” Julio Ricardo Varela wrote Friday for americamagazine.org. “Instead, you always have to frame your comments in a way that responds to the needs of the 56.5 million people who share some part of your identity. . . .”
- On Wednesday, the Athletic’s Bay Area editor-in-chief Tim Kawakami and columnist Marcus Thompson “spent about 10 minutes on Kawakami’s podcast musing on the company’s diversity or lack thereof,” Alex Putterman wrote Thursday for awfulannouncing.com. “The duo repeatedly said that The Athletic could be doing better in terms of diversity, while also defending the site and suggesting it was no less diverse than other media outlets. . . .”
- “In a men’s college basketball season marred by the federal investigation into bribes to assistant coaches and illegal payments to players at many perennial powers, the longest-running scandal of all continues with no end in sight: the disparate graduation rates for African-American players,” Derrick Z. Jackson reported March 30 for the Boston Globe. Jackson also wrote, “While Duke and Kansas had a 100 percent graduation rate, North Carolina miserably failed that test with a 40 percent Graduation Success Rate. Kentucky had a gap of 40 percentage points between a 60 percent rate for its black players and 100 percent for white players. Those latter two schools represent the underbelly of March Madness that must continue to be exposed. . . .”
- “ESPN is allegedly mulling over selling Five Thirty Eight, which was always a questionable fit for the company. Will they end up pulling the trigger on a sale?,” Ben Koo asked March 22 for awfulannouncing.com. “If so, the next big question mark is the fate of The Undefeated, which was John Skipper’s pet project and a bet he really staked his professional reputation on. . . . But despite the successful launch and a consistent flow of prestige content, many in Bristol and most outside observers are candid in their assessment that the site is nowhere near profitable. . . .”
- At its November launch, a black woman was named editor of a new alternative weekly in Baltimore — an almost unheard-of development. But the Baltimore Beat, edited by Lisa Snowden-McCray, announced last month on social media, “We’re proud of the work we’ve done but, unfortunately, advertising support hasn’t been sufficient to sustain us. As a result, we are closing the Beat effective immediately.” David Zurawik reported the development March 6 for the Baltimore Sun.
- “Author Malcolm Gladwell’s course on writing went online last week,” Dan Zak wrote March 7 for the Washington Post, with advertisements popping up more recently on social media. “His agent first told him about Master Class, and Gladwell thought it was an opportunity to remain relevant by trying out new forms of media (it’s why he started podcasting three years ago). . . .’I consider it an experiment,’ Gladwell writes in an email. ‘What intrigues me is how close online learning gets to face-to-face. So the best case scenario is if Steph Curry talks to me, one on one. But since that isn’t happening, how much can we approximate that kind of intimacy with a well-produced and thoughtful video class? I love it that someone is trying to answer that question.’ . . .”
“Do you have a remembrance of @NABJ Founder/President Les Payne?” Sarah Glover, president of the National Association of Black Journalists, tweeted on April 2. She asks that links to social media posts/pics be sent to email@example.com Rochelle Riley of the Detroit Free Press is collecting them for the family to be shared here at http://www.lespayne.org
“Payne, who spent 38 years at Newsday, died March 19 at 76.
Herb Boyd remembrance
- CBS’s “60 Minutes” on Sunday and the “CBS Evening News” on Monday devoted time to a report by Oprah Winfrey on a new Alabama memorial dedicated to the thousands of African Americans lynched over a 70-year period after the Civil War. “ ‘The National Memorial for Peace and Justice,’ which was paid for through hundreds of private donations, will open to the public April 26. . . . It contains 805 steel markers: one for each county where lynchings took place. And on each marker, the names. The markers are suspended to evoke the horror of being strung up and hanged from a tree. . . .”
- In Los Angeles, the staff of Our Weekly announced Thursday “the passing of longtime editor Cynthia E. Griffin, who died March 29 after a lengthy illness. She was 59. . . .”
- “Before he was sent to prison nearly 20 years ago, the Rev. Henry Lyons apologized for a litany of sins. Extortion and laundering of church funds. Hidden properties, secret mistresses and an opulent lifestyle that included luxury cars and a personal chef,” Corey G. Johnson wrote April 3 for the Tampa Bay Times. “But the former St. Petersburg pastor who once presided over the nation’s largest black religious organization never said a word about Rochelle McCanns. McCanns is a convicted prostitute who rose to an administrative position at Lilly Endowment Inc., an Indianapolis-based philanthropy that is one of the world’s wealthiest charitable foundations. . . . Now a Tampa Bay Times investigation finds . . . McCanns and Lyons arranged to have more than $130,000 in Lilly money sent to New Salem Missionary Baptist Church in Temple Terrace, which made Lyons pastor in 2004 after his release from prison. The stated purpose was to help finance youth programs and community service work. Records show most of the funds ended up in accounts controlled by Lyons. . . .”
- “Amazon has greenlit Lorena, an original series from Jordan Peele about John Wayne Bobbitt and Lorena Bobbitt,” Michael Malone reported Thursday for Broadcasting & Cable. “Monkeypaw, Sonar Entertainment and Number 19 are producing the four-part documentary series, directed by Joshua Rofé. Lorena Bobbitt cut off her then-husband John’s penis in 1993. . . .”
- “The faculty-led team of student journalists and strategic communication specialists we sent to Paris to report on black expatriates has arrived,” the Morgan State University School of Journalism and Communication tweeted on Monday. “Look for their tweets all week. . . .”
- “Barely 24 hours after Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s death, the Western media got to work and put the necessary mechanism in place to undermine her legacy,” according to the headline over an essay Sunday by Ahmed Sule, London-based writer and social critic, in South Africa’s Daily Maverick. “Its verdict? Mama Winnie should be dismissed as an embarrassing, evil, angry mugger.”
- The International Federation of Journalists “has called for urgent action to address the ongoing crisis facing Yemeni journalists,” IFJ said Wednesday. “Shocking new figures — published by IFJ-affiliate the Yemeni Journalists Syndicate — show that there were 60 violations of journalists and media rights in just the first quarter of 2018. . . .”
- “Pakistan’s largest television network says it has been forced off the air by cable operators in most parts of the country, in a move widely seen as being forced by the military as it flexes its authority over civilian institutions,” Salman Masood reported Friday for the New York Times.
- The Committee to Protect Journalists Friday “called on Egyptian authorities to immediately release three journalists who have been taken into police custody or disclose their whereabouts and accusations against them. Adel Eissa, a freelance photojournalist, Ahmed Abdel Gawad, a photographer with the pro-government daily al-Shorouk, and blogger Mohamed Ibrahim were detained after reporting on government opposition figures and irregularities in Egypt’s recent presidential election, according to news reports citing witnesses, colleagues, and lawyers. . . .”
Richard Prince’s Journal-isms originates from Washington. It began in print before most of us knew what the internet was, and it would like to be referred to as a “column.” Any views expressed in the column are those of the person or organization quoted and not those of any other entity.
Send tips, comments and concerns to Richard Prince at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Journal-isms is originally published on journal-isms.com. Reprinted on The Root by permission.