Cory Doctorow at BoingBoing.net notes that Associated Press has a warped view of fair use. While they try to get bloggers to pay a license fee to quote five or more words from AP articles, when it came to the Sarah Palin book they turned it inside out.
"The AP was determined to get the first copy," Oreskes [a senior managing editor] wrote, detailing how the writers learned a store had "inadvertently placed the book on sale five days before its official Nov. 17 release date." "They bought a copy, ripped it from its spine and scanned it into the system so it could be read and electronically searched," he wrote.
Not only is this an abomination of fair use, I don't think it's the least bit legal given they likely did it in part so 11 different investigative reporters could read one copy at the same time.
Coming out of the Contra Costa Times is an article titled "Researchers: Gun shows selling weapons illegally". It begins
"From pocket-size assault weapons and sniper rifles that can kill a man a mile-and-a-half away to incendiary armor-piercing bullets, you can find what you're looking for at gun shows across the United States."
Aren't journalists the ones that accuse gun owners of "fear-mongering"? Here are the facts, the only true "pocket-size assault weapon" I've seen at a gun show is the Magpul FMG9 and it's not for sale to civilians. Then again, since journalists define "assault weapons" as any gun that looks frightening, they could be talking about anything. Also, the longest sniper kill ever made was 1.51 miles using a rifle I've never seen at a gun show and a ballistics calculator that no newspaper journalist I've ever met would understand.
And Mexican drug cartels buy most of their guns in the United States, because it's easier than buying in Mexico
You have a healthcare rally with opposing sides. Someone from one side bites the finger off an elderly man from the other side. You and I both know which side did the biting, but can the media just come out and say "Moonbat Bites Man"? Of course not. See if you can even follow the multi-paragraph description of the event.
A witness from the scene says a man was walking through the anti-reform group to get to the pro-reform side when he got into an altercation with the 65-year-old, who opposes health care reform.
The 65-year-old was apparently aggressive and hit the other man, who then retaliated by biting off his attacker's pinky, according to Karoli from DrumsnWhistles.
The single eyewitness account coming from a Moveon.Org blogger. Of course. So beware protestors, if you act "aggressive" -- whatever that means -- when an Obama thug decides to go through you rather than around you, there is potential for the 'side of rational logic' to go Mike Tyson on your digits. We are unable to determine if under ObamaCare's Complete Lives System this elderly man would qualify for finger-reattachment surgery.
As many parents are focused on back to school clothes and supplies, the royal Czar Czar prepares to circumvent parental authority and speak directly to our children in one week. What will he command? That's a good question that the media won't ask, and one that could easily be answered right now while parents still have time to decide if they need a sitter or not. But like all things Obama does, it's spur of the moment and covert.
Coming on the heels of Obama suggesting that doctors cut off people's feet because it makes them more money than a prescription, an article by the Huffington Post "News Team" suggests that doctors who warn patients about the perils of socialized medicine may physically hurt them if they don't agree.
Eric Stein went to see his doctor in Los Angeles, Calif., for a routine ear-cleaning procedure last fall. He was alarmed to discover that his doctor was out of town, leaving him in the hands of the doctor's assistant, who, instead of using the usual vacuum device, was brandishing some kind of poker with "a protruding piece of metal like a wire" on one end...He mentioned that he didn't have insurance, and he made a negative remark about insurance companies. The assistant reacted strongly. "She said, 'Oh, well, you're lucky you don't live in Canada or Britain," and she mentioned the allegedly long wait times for treatment in those countries. Stein was taken aback but decided to keep his mouth shut. "I didn't want to have an argument with that needle next to my brain," he said.
Newspapers will blame the Internet but if there were any value in the product advertisers would be there. The people have spoken and if newspapers don't want to ask the hard questions we don't want the product. Online or off.
"...democracy must be more than what the majority insists upon." Barack Obama, The Audacity of Hope
Let me take this opportunity to look into something the media won't touch. All moonbat hands are unloading every cannon on the deck at Glenn Beck right now. According to the media, Glenn walks down the sidewalk with half a baby hanging out of his mouth pushing old ladies into traffic. Well, as my dear old dad used to say; "If everyone is aiming at you, you know you're on to something."
And what is Glenn on to? If you haven't watched Glenn this week, go back and start at Monday because he has unlocked an unreported movement in this country that he believes may change all of our lives. Glenn's genius is that as he falls on the sword he passes forward a series of questionswe should all ask, like "Can we survive this debt? If yes, how?" or why do we have a (self-proclaimed) communist Czar running anything? These are questions that remain long after the media has chewed him up and spit him out. Voters may not remember what the media did to Glenn next year, but his questions are sure to persist as they cast their next vote.
By now, you may have actually believed the typical NY Times line that they have to disclose everything, secret prisons, NSA tactics, interrogation tactics, because the public has the right to know everything and information has to be free, despite the risks it puts on our military or citizens.
What you probably didn't know is that David Rohde, a NY Times reporter, had been held by kidnappers in Kabul for the last seven months. Fortunately he was able to escape. Bill Keller wrote in a memo today "the consensus of experts we consulted -- and the judgment of the family -- was that a storm of publicity would at best prolong David's captivity by increasing his apparent value, and could well put him in imminent danger." Somehow I think that's a lesson that will be forgotten as soon as someone in a uniform faces the same fate. The Times withheld this information along with at least 40 other news outlets. No, the media never conspires together in the dark.
Keller continues: "I expect we will be besieged by understandable questions about who did what to make this happen. I hope that if any of you are probed on the subject you'll keep in mind that anything we say about our efforts to get David out -- whether authoritative or speculative -- risks becoming part of the playbook for future kidnappers." You've already given the terrorists every other playbook we have, Bill, why prude up now? Was the decision to keep quiet the right one? Maybe it was, maybe it wasn't. But how do the rest of us get the same treatment as journalists?
Riding on a waning crest of bringing change to the United States and cleaning up the environment, Barack Obama is going head to head against Barbara Boxer on a big issue. There are 44 coal ash dumps that have been designated as a "high hazard" to the public. They contain arsenic and heavy metals from coal plants. Barbara Boxer has seen the list and wants to make it public, whereas Barack Obama essentially told her "No, ma'am." It's important to know if you're in the path of one in case it regurgitates a billion gallons of hazardous waste on you.
Green groups are seeing red over this betrayal of campaign promises to bring a new era of openness. In fact, the average Earth-conscious moonbat is going to do a chai tea spit-take when they read about this in the newspaper. (And just wait until they read about Obama deciding to let Big Coal blow the top off 42 Appalachian mountaintops to strip mine.)
But that's where the problem lies. Jump on over to Google News and search for the term "Obama Coal Arsenic". You'll find that you won't really find anything. Anything. In fact, the only mention in the entire vast United States media is a short little editorial in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Steve Kroft caught Barack Obama "laughing and chuckling several times while discussing the perilous state of the economy", at one point asking "Are you punch-drunk?" Politico says "his awkward laughter highlighted an issue Obama has faced dating back to the campaign, a sense that he sometimes is too 'cool' and detached to fully grasp the public anxiety over mounting job losses and economic worries."
We learn in the 60 minutes interview that Mr. President has time off in the afternoon to see his kids, have dinner with the family, and takes weekends off after poking his head in to see what's going on. So basically, the POTUS puts in less hours per week than I do. Kroft also fawns over the first family's playground. What Kroft won't tell you is that while millions of Americans wonder how their next mortgage payment is going to be made, and while their father demonizes Americans for having a culture of greed, the Obama children are literally playing in a castle.
The Obama's went with a Rainbow Play System which Obama himself called "the Rolls Royce of swingsets", specifically the model is Supersized Monster Castle Package IV with a Double Bubble on the Penthouse, which retails for $14,799 plus $1500 install, not including the surface it sits on. Taxpayer* money well spent in a down economy. What, don't your children have a penthouse on their swingset?
(*There is no official word yet on who paid for this swing set.)
Every once and a while we get a new peek into the sausage factory that is Big Journalism. This time it comes from Pittsburgh Tribune-Review columnist Bill Steigerwald, who is taking an early buyout after 36 years in journalism. In his last column, he goes on to tell us what everyone here already knows:
Like many in my financially and technologically battered business, I went into journalism because I wanted to be a writer. But I also felt a duty to try to right the left-liberal imbalance of the news media, which were even more lopsided in the early 1970s without talk radio, cable TV, Fox News and the Internet.
As a reporter, I've tried my best to be accurate, fair and truthful. I've always been aware of the difference between news and opinion, between balance and bias, and between being a government watchdog and a government lapdog. And I have always known that every journalist and every editor I have ever worked with was helplessly subjective in their politics and in their definition of what news and bias were and were not.
Trust me, big-city daily newspapers don't go out of their way to achieve ideological diversity. About 90 percent of my work mates over the years were either avowed liberal Democrats or didn't know it. Reagan Republicans were virtually nonexistent. Until I got to the Trib, I was always the staff's lonely libertarian.
Obama is at it again. This time Fox News is reporting that two days after Obama took the widespread media glory for overturning the Federal ban on embryo research, he signed a law banning it again. Except this time there were no celebrations or media fanfare. It's almost as if Barack Obama has this country running full speed through a house of mirrors.
You come to NewsBusters for the reporting the American Media just won't do, to hold truth to power, and to point out when they look the other way as their ideological leader does things like give an easy button to Russia, or claims that cars were invented by Americans, while getting economic advice from someone who can't actually make money.
And in hindsight, I almost have to admire Bill Clinton for how he was able to stretch a penny of truth into a dollar. Obama, he doesn't even try, and shame on you if you won't swallow his lies because like claiming Americans invented the automobile, it's only for our benefit. In his stem cell announcement Obama said:
"scientists believe these tiny cells may have the potential to help us understand, and possibly cure, some of our most devastating diseases and conditions... To spur insulin production and spare a child from a lifetime of needles... But that potential will not reveal itself on its own.Medical miracles do not happen simply by accident."
I doubt it would surprise anyone here that the media would go to their best lengths to over-estimate the number of people at Obama's inauguration. But just how far? Try a million people.
ASU journalism professor Stephen Doig took it to the satellite image to get an accurate count of the crowd. His tally, after even accounting for those still in route to the event: 800,000. Now let's look at how the working Obamalists portrayed that to the public.
Baltimore Sun: "Inaugural crowd is estimated at close to 2 million"
Boston Globe: " The National Park Service says it will rely on a media report that says 1.8 million people attended President Obama's inauguration."
MSNBC: "Oh, and some guy named Barack Obama. Along with millions of regular folk, celebrities swarmed to DC to celebrate the Inauguration." (from the same page: "Could Inauguration Crowd Reach 4 Million?")
You might think media bias is a new thing, but a 40 year confession of a newspaper reporter gives us a peek behind the curtain as to how horribly biased newspapers have been for nearly a half century. Martin Dyckman, a former reporter for the leftist St. Petersburg Times, reminisces about the day he read over the wire that John F. Kennedy had been killed in Dallas.
The St. Petersburg Times newsroom was in controlled pandemonium. I don’t recall whether I handled any assassination copy that day; more likely, I was editing state and local news. But I was standing at the teletype when the first flash came in that a suspected Marxist, Lee Harvey Oswald, was being held in connection with the shooting. Times Publisher Nelson Poynter was standing nearby when I announced that.
His face fell.
"Oh, no," he said. "I was hoping it would be a right-winger."
That's right. He wasn't angry that a student of oppression tried to destroy this nation. He was disappointed that the President of the United States wasn't killed by a conservative, stealing an opportunity to fuel conservative hate.
The use of child pornography to sell newspapers was defended this week when New York Times Magazine Editor Gerald Marzorati sent an email defending a photo used in the fashion insert "T", which shows a 17 year old model, topless, with her left breast partially showing.
Now in case you're not versed in New York Times values or the proper use of kiddie porn, this is why it's okay; it's kind of blurry, it was shot by a "legendary fashion photographer", she's got a $4000 coat around her waist, and the section makes about $5 million in advertising revenue which was responsible from moving NYT stock rating to a "buy".
I hope this doesn't throw you out of your chair, but the LA Times was wrong in an article. The difference between this day and every other day is that this time they admit it. The story in question was one that ran 18 months ago about baseball players on steroids named in court documents which by now you've probably heard plenty about. The LA Times, using anonymous sources of course, (do you see a pattern here?) named Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte, Jay Gibbons, and Miguel Tejada as steroid abusers. Fast forward to the actual affidavit being unsealed, and those players are in fact not among those listed.
Times spokesman Stephan Pechdimaldji said "We regret our report was inaccurate and will run a correction." which I'm pretty sure will be also be known as 'exhibit A' in the libel suits to come. U.S. District Court Judge Edward C. Voss referred to the Times this way: "At best, the article is an example of irresponsible reporting. At worst, the 'facts' reported were simply manufactured." Judge, I believe this makes you an honorary Newsbuster.
On this holy Sunday, just before the celebration of the birth of the Christian Savior, The Seattle Times decided it needed something Christmas related for its Entertainment & Arts section. Not just something that reflects the values of 92% of the country, like a church service, a Christmas play, or a church choir. No, this has to be something that represents The Seattle Times values. Seattle Times arts writer Michael Upchurch certainly found it.
The Seattle Times decided the front page should include the "tawdry glamour" and "warped yuletide spirit" of "drag legend Dina Martina - a big boned chanteuse of stage and dive". So bundle up the kids in their Sunday best and brave the cold night so that your family may celebrate the birth of the Lord at "The All-New Dina Martina Christmas Show".
The ultra-liberal Seattle Times Op-Ed's the usual 21st century media line; the world is going to hell, only journalists can save us, and everything would be fine if it weren't for that darn Craigslist.
"Media companies, especially newspapers, are by default nearly the lone agents of the democratic form of government."
That statement is actually true, if your version of the word "democratic" uses a big D as opposed to a small d. The mainstream media companies you see today is what's left of 50 years of unchallenged "Democratic" mindset. The reason these bastions of liberal thought are failing is that the Internet age has made their bias apparent to people who, thanks to the Internet age, now have other places to get the news.:
You may have seen one of the 19,000 mentions of the "Home-made helicopters from Northern Nigeria." Once the AFP article hit Yahoo! News, it crossed the blogosphere like wild fire. I highly doubt it is true, and if journalists knew the first thing about flight, they might not have been so easily duped.
For starters, let's look at the measurements provided by the journalist.
For a four-seater it is a big aircraft, measuring twelve metres (39 feet) long, seven metres high by five wide.
Seven meters high? That's 23 feet tall. Does the photograph look like the helicopter is over two stories tall and 39 feet long? But the real problem with the story is with the tail rotor -- or lack thereof. France 24 has several more of the photos of this "helicopter", and in the one where the "pilot" is opening the cardboard flap that covers the engine, you can see that there is no axle to turn the tail rotor. The tail rotor, which keeps a real helicopter from spinning the same speed as the main rotor, is purely aesthetic.
The reporter claims this helicopter has "flown briefly on six occasions" at an "altitude of seven feet", but the reporter fails to corroborate this with any other witnesses. In true journalism fashion, the reporter takes a shot at a government for allegedly not supporting the wild ideas of this dreamer:
Although some government officials got very excited when they saw him conduct a demonstration flight in neighbouring Katsina state, Nigeria's Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has so far shown no interest in his aircraft. "No one from the NCAA has come to see what I've done. We don't reward talent in this country," he lamented.... In a country with Nigeria's abysmal air safety record officials may be loath to gamble on one student's home-made helicopter.
Who are the "government officials" who "got very excited"? What were they excited about? What exactly did the reporter expect the government to "gamble on"?
You know it's bad when your own ombudsman compares you to Richard Nixon, or suggests that you need an ombudsman devoted only to you. But that's exactly what PBS Ombud Michael Getler has been pushed to with the latest Bill Moyers "editorial", which was covered by our own Noel Sheppard.
Set aside for the moment that in a tirade Moyers referred to the Commander in Chief as "an intellectually incurious draft-averse naughty playboy in a flight jacket with chewing tobacco in his back pocket". That's the PBS equivalent of 'fair and balanced'. At question here is whether or not Karl Rove is a religious man. Moyers postulates that he is not, going off various dubious sources (that Moyers referred to as "circulating reports") such as the outright conjecture of bloggers. Church-attending Karl claims Moyers is wrong. Who are you going to believe?
Getler rightly points out that this type of sourcing "is not up to his [Moyer] standards", which apparently are already far below average journalistic standards. He also points out that, again, Moyers has violated PBS's Editorial Standards and Policies which require that when "a program, segment, or other content is devoted to opinion or commentary, the principle of transparency requires that it be clearly labeled as such" and "should identify who is responsible for the views being presented."
Continue reading the ombud report if you like, but I found it a tiring report of the obvious: Bill Moyers is, as Dan Rather would say - a partisan political operative, cloaked in the auspices of a journalist taking tax money from the public against the will of the majority.
It should come as a surprise to nobody that revenue is down again for the Tribune Company, owner of news properties such as the LA Times and Chicago Tribune. This time the bleeding stopped at 5.9 percent. Circulation was down 5.4 percent. Classifieds are down 18.2 percent. Retail advertising sales are down 6 percent.
But it's not their fault, of course. This time the blame is "due to difficult year-over-year comparisons." Though one must wonder if their circulation would continue to have dropped had they heeded my suggestion that newspapers "get rid of the bias, the America-hating columnists, the socialist editorials, and the reporters pushing a gay/lesbian/transgendered/illegal alien/pro-abortion/anti-God/anti-gun agenda?"
Hot on the heels of Barack Hussein Obama claiming U.S. troops are "killing civilians", Yahoo! News runs a AFP picture (right) taken by Wissam al-Okaili showing a woman with two bullets that purportedly "hit her house" during a coalition forces raid.
I won't even insult you by pointing out what's wrong with this picture. One photographer on a forum asks "How would any photo editor ever allow such a photo to be published?" I offer two answers; 1. Because they want to believe. 2. Because they don't know the first thing about guns or bullets.
In a completely Clintonesque defense (depends what the meaning of 'is' is), some are claiming that the bullets could have "hit her house" -- had they been thrown at it. '
In this second installment, we take a break from our usual program of pointing out the absurdity of liberal bias in the press to let you get to know some of the people who provide the news for public consumption.
Meet Mario Anthony Orlikoff, formerly a Daily Press Sports Editor, now an alleged bank robber. After being followed by a drive-through bank customer, Mario was pulled out of a river by police and his toy gun was taken away, which will no doubt lead to calls for a three day waiting period for toy guns. The big tip-off was that the note he handed the bank teller in the robbery was written in perfect AP Style.
In other news, Seattle Times staffers showed their true colors this week. Editor & Publisher reports that when news staffers at the Seattle Times learned of Karl Rove's resignation, they cheered. It led Executive Editor Dave Boardman to send a note to the staffers telling them to keep their politics to themselves, which apparently means keep doing what you're doing but don't cheer out loud about it.
The screaming left is always going on about the lives that will be lost from the global warming boogeyman, yet I can't find a single newspaper willing to confront the seven lives that may be lost on Wednesday because of it. You may recall how Clinton/Gore EPA regulations forced NASA to switch to a freon-free foam, one that doesn't stick to the tanks, one that causes up to 11 times more damage to the life-saving thermal tiles, all in an effort to make the libs feel better about flying their personal jets across the globe. Ever since then we've had scare after tragedy every time a Shuttle launches.
A cursory look at Google News shows that the brave and enterprising journalists from American news organizations are completely unwilling to even mention this important story. It makes me wonder what Adolph Ochs, the publisher of the New York Times who created the journalistic oath to cover the news "without fear or favor", would think of the state of journalism today. Show me the journalist with the courage to look the families of these astronauts in the face and tell them the science has already been decided.
Update (April 3, 2008) at bottom of post: Charges dropped against Corral. Statement appended.
I'd like to take a break from our usual program of pointing out the absurdity of liberal bias in the press to let you get to know some of the people who provide the news for public consumption. First up is C.P. Smith (pictured), page-one editor for The Orange County Register and husband of LA Times deputy editor Sherry Stern. When the cameras roll in his newsroom, he likes to do things like walk up and pick his nose and then wipe it on his shirt. It's gotten to the point where the news director doesn't even want to shoot in the newsroom anymore.
Next up is Miami Herald reporter Oscar Corral. Apparently Oscar is so fond of Bill Clinton that he wanted to emulate his most famous act... in his car... with Yamilet Lopez, an 18 year old. Unfortunately for Oscar, the police were listening in while he tried to negotiate the price. The Herald covered the story, of course, with 90 uninteresting words that left out the typical embarrassing mugshot, mention of the prostitute being 18 and the fact that the police overheard the transaction. Not surprisingly, Corral is proclaiming his innocence. Perhaps this was just his attempt at a unsanctioned undocumented migrant social program. After all, they are doing the work that Americans won't do.
Update (Ken Shepherd | April 3, 2008): It has come to our attention that the charges against Corral have since been dropped. In an e-mail statement Corral wrote, "This all stems from a misunderstanding. The charges were dismissed and my name has been cleared. No crime occurred. I should have never been arrested." Yamilet Lopez was also not prosecuted.
Editorial page editor Cynthia Tucker of the Atlanta Journal Constitution was asked why letters that are "factually inaccurate" are allowed into the newspaper. I had long assumed it was the same reason stories that are factually inaccurate are used in the newspaper, but not-so says Tucker: "We live in such a politically polarized age that not everybody agrees on the facts. My letters policy tends to be a bit looser than those of some other editorial page editors."
This includes "Readers who still believe Iraq had weapons of mass destruction that they were taking to Syria are allowed to express that view even though it is clearly not true." As you may recall, I addressed this "inaccuracy" once before for ACLU president turned journalist, Robyn Blumner.
George Ou reports that Dateline NBC investigative "journalist" Michelle Madigan was run out on a rail when she tried to infiltrate DEFCON in Las Vegas, the convention for hackers and security specialists, hoping to catch someone admitting to a crime. This is the same group of people who play "spot the spook" at their yearly conventions, so Michelle never had a chance. This all came after DEFCON organizers gave her four chances to register as press. Instead, Madigan made reference to how "people in Kansas" would be interested in what the hackers were up to (Kansas being the reference to the fly-over area between LA and NY) and then made a trip to the restroom to get her pinhole camera running.