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Posts Tagged ‘new media’

Japanese suffering brings out the worst in our national media

March 13, 2011 Leave a comment

I first read via Twitter sometime on Friday that some network anchors were making their way to Japan to “cover” the disaster there.  My first literal reaction was one of disgust.  This sums it up perfectly:

[L]et’s call this what it is: A publicity stunt, a star-system celebrity-status game where it’s not enough to let reporters do the reporting, but instead the networks want to send their Famous Faces With Big Names.

The purpose is to signify that this is really important news and that their anchors aren’t just Pretty People who read a Teleprompter in a Manhattan TV studio but are actual honest-to-God journalists.   It’s like how, when TV news does a story about Congress, it’s important that the reporter be on camera with the Capitol dome in the background — “See? He’s really there at the Capitol, covering Congress!” — even if what he’s reporting is just stuff that anybody could have picked up off the AP wire.

So now we’ll get to watch footage of Christiane Amanpour and Anderson Cooper walking through scenes of earthquake-and-flood devastation, because it’s important for the networks that we see this story “reported” by their $4-million-a-year superstars.

Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.  There’s nothing more important to these people than self-aggrandizement and a desire to feel relevant in an environment that with each passing day, finds them further and further behind every breaking news story.  Thank goodness for other sources of information like Twitter, from which I get the bulk of breaking news anyway.

Flipping the switch: cutting off the internet in Egypt

January 28, 2011 2 comments

In the form of a graph:

James Cowie writes:

[I]n an action unprecedented in Internet history, the Egyptian government appears to have ordered service providers to shut down all international connections to the Internet. Critical European-Asian fiber-optic routes through Egypt appear to be unaffected for now.

But every Egyptian provider, every business, bank, Internet cafe, website, school, embassy, and government office that relied on the big four Egyptian ISPs for their Internet connectivity is now cut off from the rest of the world. […]

What happens when you disconnect a modern economy and 80,000,000 people from the Internet? What will happen tomorrow, on the streets and in the credit markets? This has never happened before, and the unknowns are piling up.

[Via Twitter]

Old Media death watch (Richard Cohen edition)

October 5, 2010 Leave a comment

According to Richard Cohen’s latest column, the Tea Party is just like..(wait for it)….the National Guardsmen who killed the college students at Kent State in 1970.  Or something.

But forget the politics of it.  This is one seriously bad piece of writing.

Update. I’ll leave it to Ann Althouse to sum up the idiocy of Cohen’s column:

Cohen plunges into his 40-year-old memories about how awful it was when the National Guard shot and killed 4 college students who were protesting the Vietnam War. And naturally, in Cohen’s bike-drained, folk-music befuddled brain, that leads to what’s wrong with… Glenn Beck!

Categories: Media Tags: , ,

Katie Couric answers a question, discovers that she’s irrelevant

September 30, 2010 Leave a comment

Here’s some interesting insight into the mind of Katie Couric and Old Media:

In a news environment that has been irrevocably disrupted by the Internet, the role of broadcast news anchors has evolved out of necessity. Their ability to focus international awareness on the key issues of our time remains unparalleled, but the attention span and consumption habits of their audience has changed.

And so the question becomes: How will one of the nation’s most familiar faces and sources for news will adapt, adopt and become adept in the context of a news cycle that refreshes as often as a click on a Web browser? By the time Couric presents the 22 minutes of news as CBS’s anchor each evening, the Web has long since digested, analyzed and commented upon each item. There are few scoops by 6:30 p.m. Eastern.

[…]

The network evening newscasts still matter. “I’ve spent my whole career trying to ask important questions, listening, asking followup questions,” said Couric during her conversation with Tim O’Reilly. Her evening news show still receives millions of viewers every night.

The trouble is that, as Couric observed during her talk, their average age is 62. The news networks have to shift gears to be relevant in a 24/7/365 environment where young consumers watch video on demand, browse news through the recommendations and status updates of friends, and watch content on Internet-enabled mobile devices as well as glowing flat screen televisions.

[…]

Couric has joined Twitter, distributed video podcasts in iTunes, published Web-first video to CBSNews.com and launched an iPhone app.

[…]

The open question for Couric will be in whether she can leverage new media to reach new audiences and break through the information overload. Her questions to former Alaska governor Sarah Palin were unquestionably a factor in the 2008 election. The network anchors will continue to play a role in holding policy makers and presidential candidates accountable, because of their access. But the days of towering figures like Cronkite, Brinkley, Chancellor, Brokaw or Jennings letting the nation know “the way it is” are over.

I’m hard pressed to find any real reason that Couric became anchor of CBS Evening News other than that she was a popular face on NBC’s Today show.  That was in 2006, which might as well be decades ago when it comes to new media.  The bottom line is, there really isn’t much there but fluff.

So yeah, she’s joined Twitter, producing podcasts, etc., and therefore, thinks she’s important to the process of how most people get their information. Who’s downloading a Katie Couric podcast?  And I haven’t checked but I’m sure she has a blog on the CBS website.  Who’s reading that to get anything relevant that’s not filtered through Viacom/CBS Corp. spin cycle?

Tech Blogging

September 27, 2010 Leave a comment

This is an interesting piece on Techmeme, the news aggregator for technology which I frequent almost as much as I do Memeorandum, and its founder Gabe Rivera.

What’s driving the growth of reporting on technology?  The blogs:

“In technology coverage, what happened was blogging,” [Rivera] said. “And the best bloggers got readers, which encouraged more bloggers to emulate them. And it just added pressure for everyone to become better and faster. A lot of the characteristics of blogs made their way into more established media sites, even as some of the larger blogs became more like mainstream media. And mainstream media got a lot more bloggier.”

The internet never, ever forgets

August 23, 2010 Leave a comment

After weeks of being lazy, I finally got around to reading this interesting piece from the Times’ magazine a few weeks ago.

This bit sums up the article best:

We’ve known for years that the Web allows for unprecedented voyeurism, exhibitionism and inadvertent indiscretion, but we are only beginning to understand the costs of an age in which so much of what we say, and of what others say about us, goes into our permanent — and public — digital files.

The fact that the Internet never seems to forget is threatening, at an almost existential level, our ability to control our identities; to preserve the option of reinventing ourselves and starting anew; to overcome our checkered pasts.

This should be required reading for anyone who enjoys posting every frickin’ detail of their lives on Facebook or if they have kids who do the same.  Even if you don’t, read the whole thing.

NAACP applauds racism (UPDATE) USDA official resigns for not being racist

July 19, 2010 1 comment

This entire episode with the NAACP calling out Tea Party nation for alleged racism is so pathetic and depressing, and I’ve tried to avoid it.  I’m always hesitant about these so-called advocacy groups like the NAACP and the like; they’re so politically entrenched in the Democratic party that you have to be completely blind to their obviously biased inclinations.  The NAACP doesn’t advocate the advancement of colored people–they advocate the advancement of left-leaning Democratic colored people.  Conservative colored people need not apply.

In its usual spineless way, the mainstream media picked up on the meme, booking their NAACP guests that pushed the whole storyline–all of it was conjecture and subjective.

Earlier today, Breitbart puts up this great post outlining the entire debacle.  READ THIS NOW.

Breitbart states the obvious:

The NAACP and the Congressional Black Caucus do not want racial harmony. They want political victory, and the race card is their Stradivarius.

Three months later, the NAACP decided to “double-down” on the fabricated “”Tea Party/racism” narrative and has the gall to include the disproved Capitol Hill “N Word” non-incident as their formal condemnation of the Tea Party. Simply by snapping its figures, the mainstream media again parroted lies. The Tea Party was guilty until it proved itself innocent. A most un-American and, dare I say, culturally Marxist construct.

In fact, it’s worse. The media that provided the left a platform to accuse the Tea Party, all the while refusing to air any exculpatory evidence. Again, the mainstream media inserts itself as the number one weapon in the progressive weapons stash. Political correctness, as the Duke Lacrosse case exemplified, trumps all in PC America and her afflicted media.

[…]

The NAACP which has transformed from a civil rights group to a propaganda arm of the Democratic Party and social-justice politics, supports a new America that relies less on individualism, entrepreneurialism and American grit, but instead giddily embraces, the un-American notion of unaccountability and government dependence.

He then goes on to post video proof of the disturbing and ugly racism inherent in the race-baiting world of progressive liberalism.

Meet Shirley Sherrod:

We are in possession of a video from in which Shirley Sherrod, USDA Georgia Director of Rural Development, speaks at the NAACP Freedom Fund dinner in Georgia. In her meandering speech to what appears to be an all-black audience, this federally appointed executive bureaucrat lays out in stark detail, that her federal duties are managed through the prism of race and class distinctions.

[…]Sherrod describes how she racially discriminates against a white farmer. She describes how she is torn over how much she will choose to help him. And, she admits that she doesn’t do everything she can for him, because he is white. Eventually, her basic humanity informs that this white man is poor and needs help. But she decides that he should get help from “one of his own kind”. She refers him to a white lawyer.

The second video is just as disturbing as Sherrod more or less encourages black people to get government jobs because they won’t get laid off.  Racist stereotypes anyone?

Here are the videos:

My post is somewhat sloppy, because I’m writing after having read Breitbart’s piece twice, and words can’t explain how frustrating and insane all of this is.  For decades, the Democrats have been the party of race-baiting, playing the race card for political purposes and to spew their own brand of hate.  Add in a complicit media, and we’re on a course for disaster.

Breitbart rightfully lauds the Tea Party, and its importance in counterbalancing and fighting the hate.

UPDATE.  The racist has resigned.