Nov
06
2012

It's Awkward for NBC When MSNBC Tells the Truth

The New York Times has a news piece today (11/6/12) reporting that MSNBC is just like Fox News, and isn't that awful. Now, MSNBC, for all its flaws, is not really anything like Fox News. And most of Times reporter Jeremy Peters' evidence for their similarity comes from a Pew study of "positive" and "negative" news coverage–the kind of study that will only be meaningful after someone comes up with an objective scale for measuring how positive or negative reality is. But I was struck by this anecdotal example of the Fox-like "partisan bitterness" supposedly on display on MSNBC: In […]

Sep
13
2012

The Case of the Disappearing NYT Piece

Mitt Romney

At Huffington Post (9/13/12), Ryan Grim and Michael Calderone are raising questions about the somewhat mysterious disappearance of a New York Times news article: On Wednesday, the New York Times published a provocative story bylined by David E. Sanger and Ashley Parker, leading with the news that Mitt Romney had personally approved the blistering Tuesday night statement on the attacks in Libya and Egypt that landed his campaign in trouble. But hours later, the newspaper wiped the story out and replaced it with a significantly rewritten piece bylined by Peter Baker and Ashley Parker…. The later version, which appeared on […]

Jul
16
2012

How Campaign Strategists Turned Reporters Into Brain-Picking Zombies

Political strategists

In the if-you-like-sausage category, the New York Times' Jeremy Peters has a piece today (7/16/12)  about a new trend in journalism: Political sources demanding–and receiving–final control over what they are quoted as saying in news stories. Quote approval is standard practice for the Obama campaign, used by many top strategists and almost all midlevel aides in Chicago and at the White House–almost anyone other than spokesmen who are paid to be quoted. (And sometimes it applies even to them.) It is also commonplace throughout Washington and on the campaign trail…. Romney advisers almost always require that reporters ask them for […]

May
23
2012

Karl Rove's Ad 'Deeply Researched'–Says NYT

New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters (5/22/12) covers the new attack ad being released by Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS group. Under the (somewhat funny) headline "Subtler Entry from Masters of Attack Ads," Peters makes it sound like this is something of a scoop, and certainly a pretty big deal: When it makes its debut Wednesday in 10 swing states as the centerpiece of a $25 million campaign, it is expected to become one of the most heavily broadcast political commercials of this phase of the general election. So what do Times readers learn? We get the inside scoop on the […]

Sep
13
2011

More on CNN's Tea Party

The New York Times reported today (9/13/11) on the controversy, citing FAIR: But the CNN debate on Monday was the first event hosted jointly by a major news organization and a Tea Party group. And their partnership left some questioning whether the network had gone too far in reaching for centrist credibility. "Is there really a need for another national cable news channel devoted to promoting far-right elements within the Republican Party?" the liberal media watchdog group FAIR said Monday in an e-mail alert to its members in which it labeled the Tea Party "a controversial political group." Jeremy Peters […]

Jun
27
2011

Andrew Breitbart Is an Ink Blot

That's not my opinion– that's what I learned reading the New York Times today (6/27/11). Jeremy Peters profiles the right-wing scam artist, telling readers (emphasis added): Some of his reader-generated scoops have reverberated all the way to the halls of the United States Capitol, like the Weiner photos and undercover video he released of ACORN workers offering advice on how to evade taxes and conceal child prostitution. After the videos went viral Congress ended grants to ACORN, and federal agencies severed ties with the group. That wasn't the lesson of the ACORN videos at all. After a long battle, the […]