Posts Tagged: journalism

Light Reading

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Why do readers love to hate the Times’s Style section? While many of its trend pieces are guilty of the same transgressions committed elsewhere in mainstream media, a history of misogyny and homophobia directed at lifestyle journalism suggests our contempt goes beyond objective criticism:

Far from detailing the paper’s ignominious decline into muddy ethical waters and vacuous intellectual territory, the history of style reporting at the New York Times actually exposes some of the nastiest truths about misogyny and homophobia in the mass media: their intensity, their unbelievable durations (by which I mean “totally believable”), their active contemporary manifestations, and the role audiences play in perpetuating them.

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Blind Lie

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Over at The New Republic, Hanna Rosin pens a piece on her buddy, Stephen Glass—former Republic colleague, one-time prodigy, and probably the most lucrative fabricator in recent journalistic history:

I didn’t know when he called me that he’d made up nearly all of the bizarre and amazing stories, that he was the perpetrator of probably the most elaborate fraud in journalistic history, that he would soon become famous on a whole new scale.

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Creativity Is Messy

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Technically perfect writing is important when it comes to journalism or nonfiction, and especially helpful when writing with short deadlines. Fiction writing is different though. Nicole Bernier, over at Beyond the Margins, explains why grammatically sloppy writing might be the product of greater creativity:

Sometimes when creative writers say they don’t notice their own typos, it has a whiff of, well, humblebraggery.

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Oscar Wilde, Journalist

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The famous playwright and novelist Oscar Wilde also spent a number of years in journalism. Scholars John Stokes and Mark W. Turner are finally collecting Wilde’s journalism from the 1880s. Little is known of Wilde’s life at this time, but the articles he left behind reveal Wilde’s varied interests, reports the Times Literary Supplement, and ultimately laid the groundwork for Wilde’s better-known writing in later years:

One of the most rewarding ways of reading Wilde’s journalism is therefore as a giant workshop for the making of the Wilde that readers know better from his more famous writings of the 1890s.

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WWNBD: What Would Nellie Bly Do?

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Two things: First, Alice Gregory’s fascinating account of Nellie Bly’s bold, perennially wry career in journalism—an account that wraps up with a call for female writers to not only write about “women’s issues.”

Second, Ann Friedman responds with a thoughtful defense of making a career writing about “women’s issues.”

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When Journalistic Ethics Aren’t So Ethical

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In the course of writing a story about a golf club, a Grantland journalist named Caleb Hannan discovered that the club’s inventor was a transgender woman. She ended up committing suicide, which, though he doesn’t seem to realize it’s a possibility, could very well be the result of his outing her.

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Bad News for Journalism

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The shape of journalism has been changing rapidly in the past several years, but it still comes as a shock to hear that a media company as dominant as Time Inc. is bulldozing the barrier between business and news.

According to the New York Times, “the newsroom staffs at Time Inc.’s magazines will report to the business executives.

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Even More Barriers to Women Writers’ Success

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It’s not just the frighteningly misogynistic diatribes in the comments section—several other forces conspire to make life harder for female writers and journalists.

For example: “The most successful branded journalists stake out provocative claims frequently and aggressively, without worrying too much about whether they’ll eventually be proved wrong,” but for women, eventually being proven wrong can be a devastating career setback.

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When the Writer Becomes the Written About

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When I write a story about someone else, I keep me, myself and I, out of it….But a few years back, I wrote about someone else and did belong in the story; I was an undeniable part of it.

While writing his latest book, Joshua Prager found himself in one of those strange instances when journalists have to row out from the shore of objectivity and include themselves in the story they’re writing.

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Weekend Rumpus Roundup

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Check out these tasty Rumpus morsels, posted over the weekend!

Wendy Ortiz interviews poet Louise Mathias about beauty, ecstasy, and eroticism…and “snakes and horses and sky and birds and hallucinogenic flowers, and stars, and the smell of creosote after rain, and…”

When journalist Maggie Downs lost a friend in a skydiving accident, many of her writer acquaintances filled her “voicemail…with interview requests instead of well wishes.” In her Sunday Rumpus essay “Spill,” Downs tries to figure out what role journalism has in times of tragedy:

Are these articles designed to tell us that humans suffer?

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A Day in the Journalistic Life

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The life of a writer is rarely depicted as glamorous.

We do it because we must. But sometimes we also must do other things like eat, and pay for shelter over our heads, or support those dependent on us. In the age of of information inundation, with high reader demands and little money to go around, the situation is bound to get tense.

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The Dish Ran Away With the Andrew Sullivan Readers

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Andrew Sullivan is lighting out on his own, hoping his blog The Dish will make enough money to stay afloat without the assistance of the Daily Beast or any other publication.

His plan has a number of details that set it apart from other attempts to monetize online media: no ads (for now), no paywall (sort of), and an option for dedicated fans to pay over and above the annual subscription price, to name a few.

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