3 to read: Post Facebook? | Twitter as news editor | Bye-bye, Alex Jones

  • By Matt Carroll <@MattCData>

    Sept. 15, 2018: Cool stuff about journalism, once a week. Get notified via email? Subscribe: 3toread (at) gmail. Originally published on 3toread.co

    1. So Facebook is the “uncool uncle.” What’s next?: If it seems like Facebook is slipping as a the default platform, here’s some evidence to support that. Which leads to the obvious question: What are people switching to? Well, many are moving to messaging apps, such as WhatsApp, or Instagram or Facebook Messenger. All, of course, owned by Facebook. It is interesting to note, though, how fast people can use, then abandon wildly successful platforms. Laura Hazard Owen for Nieman Lab.

    2. If it’s ‘news’ on Twitter, is it ‘news’ everywhere else?: Interesting, thoughtful take on what happens when a crazy tweetstorm takes root — even when its, well, crazy, with no substance. How should newsrooms react? Should they cover it as a story, ignore it, or do something else? A vexing problem, written about by Chris Deaton for the Weekly Standard.

    3. Conspiracy theories made Alex Jones very rich. They may bring him down: The headline says it all. Troll-meister extraordinaire Alex Jones made a name for himself by extolling wacky conspiracy theories. Tttt anyone? Now, as social media platforms start realizing the uncomfortable truth that they are in part responsible for the grip this man has on a certain segment of the population, a backlash is swinging back. It’s been too long in coming. An excellent read by Elizabeth Williamson and Emily Steel for the NYT.


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3 to read: The mystery of Tucker Carlson | The Athletic: Same old? | Viral spread of misinformation

By Matt Carroll <@MattCData>

Sept. 8, 2018: Cool stuff about journalism, once a week. Get notified via email? Subscribe: 3toread (at) gmail.  

The mystery of Tucker Carlson: From thoughtful writer to king of the TV trolls: So who is Tucker Carlson? Former colleagues editors from his early years describe a brilliant, nuanced writer. Now he comes across as a bombastic, blowhard Fox News troll — as a rich, arrogant snot. It’s been an interesting evolution, and Lyz Lenz does a nice profile for CJR.

The Athletic: Reinventing sports coverage or same old box scores in a shiny suit?: The Athletic is on a hiring and growth spree. It’s hiring local sports reporters in undercovered markets and building market share fast — 250 employees in 38 markets. But its boast that it’s reinventing sports coverage is overblown, says Aaron Gordon for Slate. It’s the same old stories, just in a nicer package. Good story on a fast-growing sports startup.

“Misinfodemics”: The viral spread of misinformation: I learned a new word this week, always a cool thing: “misinfodemics.” It’s “the spread of a particular health outcome or disease horrible facilitated by viral misinformation.” Sound familiar? Nat Gyenes and An Xiao Mina write a compelling piece for The Atlantic about the horrors that happen through the viral spreading of misinformation. Their focus is on health, but it’s relevant to news and how it spreads through platforms. An excellent read. (Transparency alert: Nat and Xiao were colleagues at the MIT Media Lab.)

3 to read: News war | Charging readers, big time | Transforming Rolling Stone

By Matt Carroll <@MattCData>

Sept. 1, 2018: Cool stuff about journalism, once a week. Get notified via email? Subscribe: 3toread (at) gmail. Originally published on 3toread.co

  1. A decades-old newspaper battle rambles on in small-town PA: Newspaper wars? They’re still a thing? Yep, at least in a few places. Here’s a visit to Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, the country’s smallest city with two competing daily papers. It’s a nasty fight — which of course makes it all the more interesting. Good story by Dan Eldridge for CJR.

2. Making it work — by charging business subscribers $695 a year: It’s increasingly clear that advertising for news sites will not be a major revenue stream. But charging readers seems to be viable. The latest evidence is the Innovation Leader, a business-focused publication founded by Scott Kirsner, which charges its readers $695 a year. It’s working, apparently. An interesting take on building a strong vertical by Simon Owens on for The Business of Content.

3. The Women Who Transformed Rolling Stone in the Mid-70s: A fun piece about how a handful of women helped transform the amateurish (if fun) old boy atmosphere at Rolling Stone magazine, back when it was a rock ’n’ roll must read. By Jessica Hopper for Vanity Fair.

Extra read: Let me sum this up with one word: Appalling: California man arrested on charges of threatening to shoot Boston Globe employees he called ‘enemy of the people’.

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3 to read: Next for #FreePress | Newsletter strategy | Trust up

By Matt Carroll <@MattCData>

Aug. 25, 2018: Cool stuff about journalism, once a week. Get notified via email? Subscribe: 3toread (at) gmail. Originally published on 3toread.co

  1. The news editorials were a start: Now, the 7 next steps for #FreePress: More than 400 newsrooms collectively wrote about the importance of a free press. That was a good start. What’s next? Melody Kramer of the Wikimedia Foundation and Betsy O’Donovan at Western Washington U have seven ideas about what to do next: It starts with defining a goal. Good, interesting stuff.

2. Newsletter strategy: How the NYT handles its *55* newsletters: Newsletters are as old school digital as it gets, but they still work amazingly well. For those of us who do or are interested in newsletter strategies (ahem), this is a worthwhile Q&A with Elisabeth Goodridge, editorial director of newsletters for the NYT. By Mollie Leavitt for The Idea.

3. Man bites dog: Trust in news is up, especially for local media: Who says all news is bad? Apparently people like their local media — it’s the *other* media that are the bad guys. This story, by Indira Lakshmanan and Rick Edmonds for Poynter, should almost have an irony warning attached. But it is a good read about who trusts what, when it comes to media.

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