Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Another President & the Press



“Thomas Jefferson was as irritated with newspaper coverage as any public figure of his era. For all the talk of media bias today, it can't compare to the overt partisanship and personal attacks appearing in papers in our nation’s early years. 

“But Jefferson also knew that our democracy could only flourish with a free press that would keep an eye on people in power and help protect our freedoms.

“He understood that press coverage comes and goes, but freedom of the press must endure.”

—Ken Paulson, president of the Newseum Institute’s First Amendment Center, quoted in “Memo to Donald Trump: Thomas Jefferson invented hating the media,” The Washington Post, Feb. 18, 2019.




Editorial Comment: The press must endure, and someone’s got to read it.






PeezPix

Grasswirl














FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Monday, February 18, 2019

Worth 1,000 Words?



“In history, there have been professions that basically disappeared. There’s still a few chimney sweeps around, but not like there once was. The question is, what will photojournalism evolve into, and can someone earn a living doing it?” 

—Donald R. Winslow, photojournalist and former editor, National News Photographers Assn. “News Photographer,” in “The Uncertain Future of Photojournalism,” The New York Times, Feb. 15, 2019. (Image: Haiti, AP/Rodrigo Abd.) (Thanks to alert PhotoWORDster Mark Larson.)




Editorial Comment: Sure, if you’re a chimney sweep on the side.






PeezPix

Sadie and the Ferocious Hose

















FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Friday, February 15, 2019

‘Cyber Libel’?



“We reimagine a better future for journalism and society. We protect public interest above all other interests. We celebrate the good and unmask the bad. We are transparent, accountable, and consistent. We ask, we explain, we investigate.”

—The operating principles of Rappler, a Philippine news website whose founder and executive editor, Maria Ressa, was arrested Wednesday for “cyber libel” against the government of President Rodrigo Duterte. See Hannah Ellis-Petersen, south Asia correspondent, “Maria Ressa arrest: everything you need to know about the Rappler editor,” The Guardian, Feb. 14, 2019. Image: Ressa posts bail. Alex Ongcal. 

Note: Ressa is one of TIME Magazine’s 2018 Persons of the Year.




Editorial Comment: Crazy ideas.




PeezPix

Road Rage












FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Slow Learner


“It took me 15 years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I couldn’t give it up, because by that time I was too famous.” 

—Robert Benchley (1889-1945), columnist, humorist and actor.















Editorial Comment: I have no such excuse, but still I write.




PeezPix

Foggy Head








FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Love Your Work


“I have always been able to gain my living without doing any work; for the writing of books and magazine matter was always play, not work. I enjoyed it; it was merely billiards to me.” 

—Mark Twain (1835-1910), writer and billiards player, “Autobiography,” 1907.















Editorial Comment: Beats the hell out of ditch-digger or lobbyist.




PeezPix

Pinks








FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Oversaturated


Technology has “skewed our experience of daily reality. Objectively, the world is better today than ever, but the digital world inevitably makes everyone feel worse. It isn’t just the substance of daily news that unmoors you, but also the speed and volume and oversaturated fakery of it all.” 

—Farhad Manjoo, technology writer, “You Should Meditate Every Day,” The New York Times, Jan. 9, 2019. Image: Oversaturated fake news.














Editorial Comment: Opt for polyunsaturated fakery.




PeezPix

Go With the Flow, Dood







FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Monday, February 11, 2019

Game Time


“A professional writer, by definition, is a person clothed in self-denial who each and almost every day will plead with eloquent lamentation that he has a brutal burden on his mind and soul, will summon deep reserves of ‘discipline’ as seriatim antidotes to any domestic chore, and, drawing the long sad face of the pale poet, will rise above the dread of his dreaded working chamber, excuse himself from the idle crowd, go into his writing sanctum, shut the door, shoot the bolt, and in lonely sacrifice turn on the Mets game.” 

John McPhee, writer, author and Pulitzer Prize winner, from “The Patch,” 2018. Read NYT review here. (Thanks to alert WORDster Wesley Chesbro.)


Editorial Comment: That can be quite the sacrifice.




PeezPix

Pernicious











FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Friday, February 8, 2019

Editor Angst


“The last thing that I want to do is to pass myself off as some sort of ferocious gatekeeper who — in some sort of argument about the purity and the wonder of the English language, and how it must be preserved — is simply being unkind and cruel to other human beings.” 

—Benjamin Dreyer, copy chief, Random House, and author, Dreyer's English: An Utterly Correct Guide to Clarity and Style, in Terry Gross, “Random House Copy Chief:Stand Tall Wordsmiths! (But Choose Your Battles),” Fresh Air, NPR, Feb. 5, 2019. (Thanks to alert WORDster Mark Larson)







Editorial Comment: But, seriously, you knothead . . . fewer, NOT less!!!





PeezPix

Low Tide Still Life








FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Thursday, February 7, 2019

When Everybody's Mad


“One of the supposed golden rules of journalism goes like this: ‘If everybody’s mad at your coverage, you must be doing a good job.’

“That’s ridiculous, of course, though it seems comforting. If everybody’s mad, it may just mean you’re getting everything wrong.
 
“But it’s the kind of muddled thinking that feels right to media people who practice what I’ll call the middle-lane approach to journalism — the smarmy centrism that often benefits nobody, but promises that you won’t offend anyone.” 
 
—Margaret Sullivan, media columnist, “The media feel safest in the middle lane. Just ask Jeff Flake, John Kasich and Howard Schultz,The Washington Post, Jan. 30, 2019.



Editorial Comment: On the other hand . . . .




PeezPix

Dozer Dog










 



FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Counterpoint


Note: Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos earned plaudits for his $10M Super Bowl LIII “Democracy Dies in Darkness” ad on the importance of journalism, but not everyone at the Post cheered.


“Compared to Super Bowl ads, this expense is a pittance for the Post but real money to the young people already working two jobs. But that’s the Post’s owner, who has perfected the art of buffing his image as a defender of journalism while quietly screwing the people who do it.” —Fredrick Kunkle, Washington Post union representative.

“I’m really proud to work at a newspaper that does this vital work. But maybe next $10 million could go toward better health benefits, parental leave, equal pay, and more jobs for reporters?” Sarah Kaplan, Washington Post reporter. 

See Gerry Smith, “Bezos’s Post Ad, Reportedly a Late Switch, Draws Ire From Staff,” Bloomberg, Feb. 4, 2019.



Editorial Comment: There’s always something.




PeezPix

Wet Dog










 



FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Best of Superbowl LIII



https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2019/national/democracy-dies-in-darkness/?tid=pw_acq_bg_20190204_I
“When we go off to war.
When we exercise our rights.
When we soar to our greatest heights.
When we mourn and pray.
When our neighbors are at risk.
When our nation is threatened.
There’s someone to gather the facts.
To bring you the story.
No matter the cost.
Because knowing empowers us.
Knowing helps us decide.
Knowing keeps us free.”

—“Democracy Dies in Darkness” Superbowl LIII ad, The Washington Post, Feb. 2, 2019. Watch here.



Editorial Comment: Amen.




PeezPix

Shroomtown










 



FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Monday, February 4, 2019

Sure Thing



“The Internet will strut an hour upon the stage, and then take its place in the ranks of the lesser media.” 

—Simon Jenkins, former editor, The London Times, 1996, quoted in Jill Lepore, “Does Journalism Have a Future?” The New Yorker, Jan. 28, 2019.











 

Editorial Comment: That goofy “light bulb” thing will never catch on either.



PeezPix

Graffiti Rock











 






FREE! Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email This free “service” is sent to 2,000,000 or so subscribers around the planet more or less every weekday morning during WORD season. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. Don’t shoot the messenger.) 
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard