Blog Profile / Columbia Journalism Review

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Archived Since:April 26, 2008

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When good words go bad

A letter to an advice columnist recently complained that a son’s school was treating his parents “like nimrods.” In context, it was clear that the letter writers meant “idiots.” But “nimrod” used to be a positive word, not a negative one. Yes, it’s time for “when good words go bad.” For many years, centuries even, “nimrod” meant “a hunter,” perhaps...

With a shrinking user base and executive exits, a watershed moment for Twitter

With the announcement last week that Vice President of Communication Natalie Kerris is leaving Twitter after only six months on the job, the company’s public relations troubles are in the news again. But does Twitter have a PR problem, or a problem with how the site itself is working? While the reason for Kerris’s departure remains unclear, her exit comes...

How the fight over undercover videos is pitting Planned Parenthood against the mainstream media

For the past year, Planned Parenthood and its supporters have been locked in a bitter legal and political battle with the anti-abortion activists and self-proclaimed citizen journalists who produced and released hidden-camera recordings of meetings with the group’s officials. Show More Summary

Nonprofit owner plans a merger for two pioneering Chicago magazines

For more than a quarter-century, the Chicago-based newsmagazine Catalyst has focused exclusively on the city’s public school system, the third largest in the nation. Although it never had a large staff, Catalyst’s coverage of the schools was more detailed than most of the major news outlets, even those with dedicated education reporters. Show More Summary

Joint NABJ-NAHJ convention signals thaw after breakup of journalism alliance

A joint convention put on by membership organizations representing black and Hispanic journalists is drawing thousands to Washington, DC, this week and may set a template for how such groups can work together in the future. It’s a major...Show More Summary

Headlines editors probably wish they could take back

This week, an untraditional spin on Lower case: Headlines editors probably wish they read again and again. Goat war: an apology. — Guardian style guide (@guardianstyle) August 1, 2016 The Local, 8/2/16

CNN's Corey Lewandowski problem

In a rosy profile published Tuesday by Variety, “How Jeff Zucker Made CNN Great Again,” the network chief leveled a Trump-worthy cheap shot on two digital upstarts making waves in new media. “I don’t think Vice and BuzzFeed are legitimate news organizations,” Zucker tells Variety. “They are native advertising shops. We crush both of them. They are not even in...

How journalists can cover leaks without helping spies

Speaking on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange told Chuck Todd that when it comes to protecting the identity of sources, he makes no distinction between whistleblowers seeking to expose government abuse and government spy agencies seeking, for example, to manipulate elections. Show More Summary

Ferguson’s new police chief on ‘being black and blue,’ the press, his Miami roots

For years, South Florida reporters have wondered what Delrish Moss would do when he retired from the Miami Police Department. Moss served as a patrol officer and spent several years as a homicide investigator, but he put in the most time as the public information officer and he was the face and voice of the often-troubled department. He was also...

The best and worst journalism of July 2016

We at CJR remain in a post-convention hangover after a two-week binge on more televised political content than the human liver can handle. News cycles in these dog days of summer have blurred together alongside Donald Trump’s bizarro statements du jour. But some journalism still stood out despite the noise—for better and for worse. Best Journalism of July 2016 The...

How one paper filed a FOIA request in Michigan--and got sued by the county

Michigan’s primary elections, taking place today, may offer few competitive races. But one of them has offered a look at an unusual type of legal action—one in which a government entity sues a local media outlet in response to a public-records request. These cases aren’t unprecedented. Often, they arise when a local government entity says it fears being sued after...

With key new hires, Texas Tribune continues to reach beyond political insiders

When talk turns to nonprofit journalism success stories, a few names tend to pop up--and the Texas Tribune is usually one. Launched in 2009, the Austin-based news outlet now boasts $6.5 million in annual revenue, a staff of nearly 60 people, and a steady stream of awards and accolades for its coverage of Texas politics and government. Today, it’s no...

Exit interview: Aron Pilhofer on the digital landscape, buyouts at The Guardian

Aron Pilhofer has had a front-row seat to the sweeping changes newsrooms have experienced at the hands of digital disruption. In a journalism career spanning more than 20 years, he’s participated in the technical evolution of the industry--from...Show More Summary

Why collocations sound perfectly natural

You would think that, with all the words we have in our language, it would be perfectly natural to replace a word in an expression with a synonym and have it sound perfectly natural. So, instead of someone saying “I’m going out for a bite to eat,” it should be perfectly natural to say “I’m going out for a nibble...

Why a legal publisher's growth strategy might succeed where newspaper chains have failed

Melissa Hoffmann felt like she was standing on a diving board. She was on vacation the first week of June when she received the big news: Upon returning to work the following Monday, she’d assume a wildly different job, one that would position her as one of the linchpins in a corporate restructuring bid to create a destination for international...

Trump's wish for hacking powers sets up disaster scenario Snowden feared

Donald Trump shocked a lot of people on Wednesday when he suggested (maybe sarcastically, maybe not?) that he hopes Russia is hacking the emails of Hillary Clinton so they can find the ones she deleted from her private server. There was another phrase, however, he used later in the day that didn’t get the same attention yet was perhaps more...

CJR gets new editor and publisher

We are very pleased to announce that Kyle Pope will become the next editor and publisher of Columbia Journalism Review. Kyle is a wonderful journalist and editorial leader with wide-ranging experience. He spent a decade as a reporter,...Show More Summary

In Cincinnati, a local TV station sets out to build a full-fledged digital newsroom

An editorial board. An editor-in-chief. A staff editorial cartoonist and a high school sports beat writer. A revenue stream that combines both advertising dollars and subscribers. Those sound like classic elements of a major metropolitan newspaper. Show More Summary

Laid-off IBT journalists make news of their own in Twitter protest

A group of former IBT Media employees had the hashtag “IBTWTF” trending on Twitter Thursday as they protested the terms of their separation from the company. IBT laid off more than 30 editorial staff members on June 30. Employees say the company gave them no notice, offered them meager severance packages (in some cases none at all), and refused to...

Watching the press at the DNC

onditions at Wells Fargo Center remained tight Wednesday night as attendees awaited the evening lineup, which featured President Barack Obama's speech. In close quarters, reporters vied for space and the frames they knew their organizations would want. Show More Summary

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