Trump brings the crisis in journalism to a flashpoint

Summary: Campaign 2016 and the advent of Trump have brought the crisis in journalism to the front pages. Fake news, conflicts with the president, calls for advocacy journalism, loss of the public's trust -- together these are forcing journalists to reconsider the craft and their business. Failure to find solutions will mean a new information … Continue reading Trump brings the crisis in journalism to a flashpoint

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Here are the facts so far about the Trump-Russia file.

Summary: The Trump-Russia story creates a situation without parallel since Watergate (Iran-Contra was a sideshow). The news gives us the usual confusing mish-mash. Here is an outline of the story, with links and pointers to the best analysis I have seen so far. Read, decide for yourself --  and watch this story evolve. See the follow-up: Deciphering … Continue reading Here are the facts so far about the Trump-Russia file.

Fact-checking: useful, until it becomes politically biased trivial pursuit

Summary: Monday's debate shows the limit of fact-checking, even in those rare cases where it's politically neutral. While useful in small doses, it boosts our obsession with the trivial aspects of the race and obscures the great issues at stake. Also, it's seldom done with a neutral viewpoint -- becoming glib defenses of the established … Continue reading Fact-checking: useful, until it becomes politically biased trivial pursuit

Gallup sounds the death knell for the news media. Disruption coming!

Summary: The latest Gallup poll about the public's trust in the media has bad news about this key industry -- and for America, which relies on this to make the Republic run. It's another industry ripe for disruption. We can only guess if for the better or worse. Watch an industry die: the long decline … Continue reading Gallup sounds the death knell for the news media. Disruption coming!

Journalists suffer from the crisis crisis, warping America’s vision

Summary: The news is all about fear. Each day journalists flood the media with exaggerated stories of imminent doom without useful context. This slant to the news warps our perception of the world, with ill effects on America's public policy. It's the crisis crisis, as described by Peter Moore in a prescient article from Playboy … Continue reading Journalists suffer from the crisis crisis, warping America’s vision

The long slow crash of journalism. How will it affect us?

Summary: The news business will radically change during the next generation, and few seem to see the core problems of overcapacity (both too many companies and too many journalists) and the coming wave of automation. This post takes a brief look at both. "Reading the morning newspaper is the realist's morning prayer. One orients one's … Continue reading The long slow crash of journalism. How will it affect us?

Politifact tells us about American politics and science. We should listen.

Summary: This vignette illustrates important aspects of the climate change debate, and why it has failed to gain sufficient support from Americans to pass large-scale public policy measures. For two decades journalists and scientists have cooperated to produce political propaganda, exaggerating and misrepresenting the work of the IPCC. Their failure should inspire us, showing a … Continue reading Politifact tells us about American politics and science. We should listen.