All Articles Tagged "journalism"
UPDATE: “This Is A Conversation You’re Clearly Uncomfortable With:” Soledad O’Brien Responds To Criticism Of Her “Black In America” Series
Soledad O’Brien recently discussed modern journalism, social media, and her Black In America series at Harvard’s Institute of Politics with Callie Crossley, a Boston-area journalist with WGBH and producer of the documentary series Eye On The Prize, and had some very straightforward and colorful things to say about responding to criticism of her popular series.
“It was only white people who ever said that… If only we could see beyond race,” O’Brien says at one point in the video. “OK, white person, this is a conversation you’re clearly uncomfortable with,” O’Brien continues in her hypothetical conversation. LOL.
In the video, Soledad O’Brien also discusses some of the conditions of modern journalism, such as the impact of social media, which has its pros and cons, as demonstrated in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombing. The discussion is part of The IOP’s John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum. You can watch the whole one-hour conversation online here.
You’ll recall that O’Brien was named Distinguished Visiting Fellow for 2013-2014 at Harvard’s Graduate School of Education, in part to talk about just these issues. What’s interesting — and refreshing — is the candor with which she speaks about them.
UPDATE: With that in mind, O’Brien is taking her response a step further and says that a series called “White In America” is in the works. TVNewser quotes her saying, “As a journalist, my job is to probe the uncomfortable topics to drive conversation. I’m happy to see that’s still happening as a result of ‘Black In America,’ and I look forward to continuing that conversation as we continue to tell the stories of who we are. We’re not just working on BIA, but also developing a ‘White in America.’ Stay tuned for that one.”
She also takes a jab at the blogosphere for what she says are “ taking the conversation out of context and ginning up headlines” by calling out her previous comments.
Will you watch “White In America?”
Check out the clip below.
New dad T.J. Holmes is officially on diaper duty.
The former host of BET’s late-night talk show Don’t Sleep says he does his best to help his wife Marilee Fiebig with caring for their two-month-old daughter Sabine.
“I probably change more diapers than her because she breastfeeds and she has to do that,” Holmes told ESSENCE.com at the premiere of Free Angela. “So I do the thing that I can do and that’s change diapers.”
Awww, isn’t that sweet! Men don’t really like to help with diaper changes (it isn’t a woman’s favorite thing either) so it’s nice to see he’s become a pro at it. You can read the rest over on Essence.
What have been some of your most memorable moments as parents?
The AP Stylebook dictates the words, abbreviations, and phrases used at media outlets around the world. When they say you can’t say something it has far-reaching repercussions.
So when the Stylebook says you can no longer use the words “illegal immigrant,” it’s a pretty big deal. In a post on the guide’s blog, SVP and executive editor Kathleen Carroll says:
The Stylebook no longer sanctions the term “illegal immigrant” or the use of “illegal” to describe a person. Instead, it tells users that “illegal” should describe only an action, such as living in or immigrating to a country illegally.
The decision is a reversal of its previous endorsement of the term. However, the blog goes on to say that the English language — and what’s deemed acceptable — is an ever-changing thing. Though some terminology is fine at one point, it’s not uncommon for it to fall out of favor, become outdated, or become widely seen as offensive. On that latter point, Carroll talks about “labeling” and how the Stylebook must be careful about that.
The guideline now reads:
illegal immigration Entering or residing in a country in violation of civil or criminal law. Except in direct quotes essential to the story, use illegal only to refer to an action, not a person: illegal immigration, but not illegal immigrant. Acceptable variations include living in or entering a country illegally or without legal permission.
Moreover, when someone is in a country illegally, the AP asks that the writer specify the conditions, such as an expired visa. Children shouldn’t be described as entering a country illegally. And if a story is describing an immigration violation, it must attribute a source.
The New York Times is considering a change to its standard as well.
What do you think of the new phrasing?
The revered newspaper The Washington Post has hired its first African-American managing editor. Kevin Merida will be promoted to the slot vacated last month by Liz Spayd.
“[Merida] is a journalist of remarkable accomplishment, but also a warm and caring colleague. And he has a record of proven leadership,” executive editor Martin Baron wrote in a morning memo to staff, reports the newspaper.
Merida, 56, joined the paper in 1993 to cover Congress and after covering the 1996 presidential race, he was moved to the Style section, becoming a long-form feature writer. He was coordinating editor of the Post’s yearlong 2006 award-winning series, “Being a Black Man,” which later formed the basis for an anthology published by Public Affairs Books.
In his new position, Merida will be responsible for news and features coverage as well as the Universal News Desk.
For the past four years, Merida has been the Post’s national editor. During his tenure, several new sections were added to the paper, such as Fact Checker and a new blog, She the People, to showcase the voices of women.
Merida is also the co-author of the biography Supreme Discomfort: The Divided Soul of Clarence Thomas and co-author of the bestselling Obama: The Historic Campaign in Photographs.
After graduating from Boston University in 1979 with a degree in journalism, Merida started his journalism career at The Milwaukee Journal, where he was a general assignment reporter and a rotating editor on the city desk. He joined The Dallas Morning News in 1983, where he served as a special projects reporter, local political writer, national writer, White House correspondent and assistant managing editor in charge of foreign and national news coverage.
He follows in the footsteps of Simeon Booker, who paved the way for Merida when he became the first full-time African-Amerian reporter at the Washington Post in 1952. Booker was recently recognized by the National Association of Black Journalists with their highest honor, induction into the organization’s Hall of Fame, reports EUR. Booker, according to EUR, said the experience of desegregating the Post “damned near killed me.”
The newspaper has come a long way since 1952.
In her 25 years of broadcasting experience, Lowe has covered the gamut, from news to sports to entertainment. L.A.-born Lowe previously hosted Fox Sports’ FoxWire and the entertainment show, FoxNOW. Lowe is still a sports fanatic; basketball and NASCAR are her favorites.
Although she is concentrating on her own career, Lowe takes time to school others on the ins and outs of broadcasting. For the past 15 years, she has conducted broadcasting seminars for aspiring journalists, athletes, musicians and financial executives — anyone looking to enhance their interviewing skills. She spends a great deal of time as an adviser to the Center for Sports & Entertainment, a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing skills of youth by exposing and preparing them for diverse careers in the sports and entertainment industry.
Think Lowe is busy enough? She’s also a wife, mother and emerging entrepreneur, launching a line of products (such as maternity t-shirts) and endorsements that appeal to women of all ages.
Madame Noire: What is the most rewarding part of hosting Better?
Audra Lowe: When guests, tell me how comfortable I make them feel. It’s also rewarding knowing that, with our research, tips and guests, we may have helped someone with a part of their life. I get an overwhelming amount of viewer feedback that makes me realize that what we’re doing is effective, and is helping someone who needs a little motivation.
MN: You have been with Better since 2007. What do you still find exciting about your job?
AL: Had this been any other show, I may have been bored by now. But the fact is, no two days on our show are ever alike. Meeting celebrities isn’t what’s exciting to me. Meeting celebrities with substance is. Take actor, Tony Danza. I grew up watching him on TV and the other day, he sat down next to me in the makeup room and started chatting like we were old friends before our interview. In a matter of minutes, I realized just how intense and passionate he is about teaching and he didn’t want to talk about his TV career on the show as much as he wanted to focus on education. Taye Diggs—yes, he promoted his show but he was also so conversational, fun and engaging. We talked about being parents and he got so comfortable that we now call it “the Taye Diggs lean” on the couch!
MN: They used to say that an on-air career is shorter for women because people don’t like to see older female newscasters. Do you think this is changing?
AL: I wish I could say it is changing but personally, I think it’s either the same or—in some cases–getting worse. I wish executives would understand the value of “women over 30” and what they bring to the table.
Keija Minor has been named the first black editor-in-chief ever at Conde Nast, home to magazines including Vogue, Glamour and The New Yorker. Minor will be the EIC of Brides magazine, replacing Anne Fulenwider who’s heading to Marie Claire. Minor was previously executive editor of the magazine.
HuffPo Black Voices has an interesting article, looking at the (few) other mainstream magazines that have had black editors atop the masthead. Among them, Ebony‘s EIC Amy DuBois Barnett who was the managing editor of Teen People and Corynne Corbett, the beauty editor of Essence who was previously executive editor of Real Simple.
Hello Beautiful has some of the reaction on Twitter to this historic news. Conde Nast is a 103-year-old company. Crazy that we’re still making this sort of history in 2012.
Veteran journalist and “60 Minutes” interviewer Mike Wallace dies at 93 years of age.
Mike was a regular contributor to the iconic show for over 25 years. His broadcast career spanned 65 years beginning in radio.
Mr. Wallace quickly became known for his muckraking stories, ambush interviews and sit-downs with celebrities and heads of state. He was later coined “America’s toughest interviewer”.
This past Saturday, anywhere between a few hundreds to as many as 5,000 protesters (depending on the source) flooded into Manhattan for Occupation Wall Street, a multi-day rally, which seeks to peacefully “occupy Wall Street” and expose the disloyal, incompetent, and corrupt special interests, which have permeated our economy and government.
Inspired by the massive public protests in Cairo and in Madrid, these protestors organized online, mostly through social networking sites, with a little help from the activist hacker group Anonymous. For the past three days, the protestors slept in sleeping bags in a park near Wall Street at night and held demonstrations in the morning. Today will mark the fourth day of the “occupation” where hundreds still remain beating drums, waving signs and chanting slogans such as “Wall Street is our Street.” Yet the three major cable news networks have devoted little to no airtime on this developing story.
Of course, you can watch the protest live online or you can read all about the details in alternative newspapers and online news sites. However, the mainstream media, which reports daily on the happenings inside of Wall Street have seemed to bypass all the action happening outside on the streets of the financial district. I mean when the youth in Eygpt and Tunisia decided to stand up and say they had enough, our media was there with round the clock coverage. So what’s up with that?
Perhaps there is a logical explanation on why the mainstream press, particularly the 24 hour news stations have chosen to ignore the protest – especially at a time when animosity for the Wall Street has reached fever pitch. Maybe the numbers weren’t big enough to warrant coverage? However, similar and yet sparsely attended Tea Party rallies in Washington, D.C, which were held in support of federal spending cuts, were rewarded with generous media attention. Yet in the past few months dozens of protests against the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, killer drones, no-cuts to government spending, police brutality and other progressive causes have been carried out and I didn’t see any of those rallies getting coverage.
It’s hard to imagine that the mainstream media has been intentionally ignoring progressive causes while giving attention to the rallies of the extreme right. But consider that when a broad coalition of black activist groups, which had been spearheaded by the Nation of Islam, took to the streets to protest the bombing of Libya and raise awareness of social ills domestically for the Millions in Harlem March in New York City, there was no media attention.
The same could be said for the Israeli Tent City protest, which has been happening since early August. Tens of thousands of protestors have taken to the streets in Jerusalem, Haifa and a dozen other Israeli cities in what they are calling a Million Man March to protest that country’s rising cost of living. And yet as bombings by Hamas makes news day in and day out in western media outlets, what is pegged as the largest demonstration in Israeli history since the Lebanon protest can’t get any place on the TV screen here stateside.
Any suppression of news is considered censorship and by ignoring antiwar and other far-left protests, not only is the mainstream media missing important stories and failing to act as the watchdog for the 1st through 3rd Estates, it is also propagating agendas, particularly corporate, right and centrist political agendas, which seeks to suggest that there is no visible opposition to the U.S. wars and other international and domestic policy issues. This is why it is so frustrating for those in the far left, progressive and even the black nationalist communities, who have to sit and listen as pundits and commentators spout off about the lack of appeal for their causes within the general public when the unpublicized and unreported reality suggest something totally different.
Charing Ball is the author of the blog People, Places & Things.
(San Francisco Chronicle) — More than four years after journalist Chauncey Bailey was gunned down in broad daylight on a downtown Oakland street, the man who ordered him and two others killed was sentenced Friday to prison for the rest of his life – but not before he proclaimed his intention to find the real mastermind of the slayings. Yusuf Bey IV, 25, denied that he had ordered the killings and, in a statement read by his attorney, said, “I will not rest until I find those who are truly responsible for setting this operation up.” Bey’s sentencing was a final act of sorts for Your Black Muslim Bakery, the black empowerment group his father formed in Oakland in the 1960s. At its height, the group aspired to promote healthful dietary habits in the African American community and recruit local blacks, mostly men, for positions of responsibility.
(Rolling Out) — Despite the fact that minorities’ population percentages continue to improve in America, diversity in the mainstream newsrooms nonetheless continues on its uninterrupted downward spiral. And with the popularity and convenience of the internet, newsrooms and magazine editorial departments have shrunken to unprecedented lows. That means even less opportunities for minorities and, more specifically, African American journalists and aspiring media personalities. Here at the National Association of Black Journalism Conference inside the Pennsylvania Convention Center, we approached a multiplicity of media entities and journalists to gauge their perspective of this most volatile and ever-changing industry and how it has impacted their businesses and careers.