3 to read: Fighting for press freedom | YouTube in crisis (again) | Making the NYT better

By Matt Carroll <@MattCData>

Jan. 6, 2017: Cool stuff about journalism, once a week. Get notified via email? Subscribe: 3toread (at) gmail. Originally published on 3toread.co

  1. Fighting against government’s war on press freedom: James Risen’s unflinching reporting about the government’s illegal operations and spying on its own citizens led to years of blistering conflict with the White House and other agencies. But the former NYT reporter also had intense bureaucratic battles with his own editors about getting stories told. Risen details for The Intercept a compelling behind-the-scenes (and long) account of his fights. Interestingly, the stories of the NYT infighting are just as fascinating as the rest.

2. Logan Paul suicide video shows YouTube is facing a crucial turning point — again: YouTube has had trouble policing what gets posted to its site and has been criticized for its uneven hand in applying its own community standards. A recent video by one of its most prominent boggers, showing a suicide victim in Japan, drives home how difficult it is for the video platform to act as an editor for what should and should not be shown on it site. Part of the problem, critics point out, is that YouTube encourages boundary-pushing by emphasizing clicks. So in essence, the controversy is inevitable. An interesting piece by Davey Alba for BuzzFeed News.

3. How to make the New York Times a *lot* better: Margaret Sullivan, the WaPo’s media columnist and former public editor at the NYT, is encouraged by the appointment of the NYT’s new publisher, Arthur G. Sulzberger. But the country’s “paper of record” must be willing to give up what she calls its addiction to power, which she feels allows those in government and business to use the news pages for their own good. An interesting take from one of the best media writers today.

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Matt Carroll teaches journalism at Northeastern University. Twitter: @MattcData. Instagram: mattcarroll54.

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3 to read: WaPo goes transparent | NYT’s own sex scandal | How Breitbart declared war on Twitter

By Matt Carroll <@MattCData>

Dec. 16, 2017: Cool stuff about journalism, once a week. Get notified via email? Subscribe: 3toread (at) gmail. Originally published on 3toread.co

  1. How the WaPo broke the Roy Moore story & got more transparent: First, this is interesting piece for journalists curious about how the WaPo got the story. But secondly — and maybe more importantly — it’s eye opening for people outside the business, who might wonder how “sausage is made.” It’s the Post’s first story in what will be a series in “deconstructing the journalistic process.” It’s also a great example of how newsrooms can be more transparent and can increase trust when the public has become increasingly skeptical and cynical about the media.

2. Scandal at the NYT: Investigation into allegations against star reporter Glenn Thrush: There’s no shortage of irony here. The New York Times, after all, kicked off the blistering #metoo movement with its incredible reporting on Weinstein. Now, one of its star White House reporters has been suspended after a report in Vox about how Thrush allegedly made moves on younger female reporters. This Vanity Fair piece by Joe Pompeo describes a strong response from the NYT: Dozens interviewed in rigorous interviews. Stay tuned.

3. How Bannon, Milo & Breitbart declared war on Twitter: BuzzFeed has written a fascinating inside look at how Breitbart’s Steve Bannon roared into battle against Twitter, convinced that the tweet machine was blocking conservative voices and banning his employees, including then-star Milo Yiannopoulos. “Should we sue Twitter?” Yiannopoulos wrote in an email to Bannon. “Already talked to lawyers,” replied Bannon. A tale about how Bannon unleashed Breitbart against Twitter, trying their best to hurt the social network. Great work by Joseph Bernstein and Ryan Mac.

BTW: Taking holiday time. Next post on Jan. 13.

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Matt Carroll teaches journalism at Northeastern University. Twitter: @MattcData. Instagram: mattcarroll54.

3 to read: 13 tips from ‘Spotlight’ reporter | Live-streaming transforms journalism | Bribing freelancers

By Matt Carroll <@MattCData>

Dec. 9, 2017: Cool stuff about journalism, once a week. Get notified via email? Subscribe: 3toread (at) gmail. Originally published on 3toread.co

  1. Mike Rezendes of the ‘Spotlight’ movie has 13 tips for investigative reporters: Looking for some tips on how to be a good investigative reporter? Mike Rezendes of the Boston Globe (and Spotlight movie fame) has some excellent tips, from the simple to the profound. Mike, who is a friend and former colleague, has been doing this for a long time and knows what he is talking about. Check them out.

2. The live-streamers who are challenging traditional journalism: Never mind the “coming” revolution with AR and VR. There’s already a revolution going on, and it’s with live-streamers. A fascinating trip with Tim Pool, one of the top live-streamers out there, and how he goes about his business. His stuff is raw, confusing, occasionally boring as all hell — but often riveting. It’s clear this is one direction journalism is headed. Nice story by Andrew Marantz in the New Yorker.

3. How brands secretly buy their way into Forbes, Fast Co & HuffPo stories: Take a peek behind the curtain at the (very) dark side of freelance journalism. It’s about how brands secretly buy their way into digital news stories on sites ranging from Forbes to Fast Company by — shocker — bribing the news site’s freelance writers. It’s not exactly surprising given the pittance paid by newsrooms to those freelancers scratching out a miserable economic living in the “gig economy.” But it is certainly ugly and embarrassing for everyone involved. Nice work by Jon Christian for TheOutline.

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Matt Carroll teaches journalism at Northeastern University

Logo by Leigh Carroll <Instagram @Leighzaaah>

 

 

 

3 to read: Power & peril of personalization | The 140-character prez | Why Facebook can’t make you money

By Matt Carroll <@MattCData>

Oct. 21, 2017: Cool stuff about journalism, once a week. Get notified via email? Subscribe: 3toread (at) gmail. 

  1. The power — & peril — of personalizing the news: Algorithms have the power to connect people to the news they care about most. Or to create filter bubbles so they are rarely exposed to different viewpoints. Yet there is no turning back — algorithms are a major tool in newsrooms’ arsenal of engagement tools. A nuanced look at personalized news by Adrienne LaFrance for Niemen Reports.

2. The legal & ethical questions surrounding the 140-character president: Donald Trump’s controversial use of Twitter is well known. He’s also breaking new ground through his use of a new medium, as presidents Roosevelt (radio) and Kennedy (TV) did before him. Mathew Ingram of CJR takes a thoughtful look at the implications, legal and ethical, of what happens when the president stirs the pot in 140-character bursts. A good read.

3. Q: Can newsrooms use Facebook to make money?

A: ‘Not really.”

Ouch. Jennifer Brandel of Hearken writes a searing takedown of why Facebook is such a bad deal for newsrooms, for instance: posting and writing for the platform is a massive time sink, FB owns the relationship with your readers, and finally, the return on investment is low. Jennifer is not a disinterested party here. Hearken has its own engagement software. But she has a point and it’s an interesting read, especially if you are sick of Facebook and are looking for an alternative.

Extra credit: A ‘wayback machine’ report: Inside Jimmy Breslin’s feud with the NY Post: Jimmy Breslin was the kind of larger-than-life character who was meant to flourish in New York. He might be best known as a columnist for the NY Daily News, where he won a Pulitzer. But he also worked for the NY Post for a couple of years — and he bore that publication a special, inflammatory grudge that lasted decades. For those with a taste for news history, here’s a fascinating, insider view of that rift through the eyes of Howard V. Sann for CJR.

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Matt Carroll teaches journalism at Northeastern University.