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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Stop the Presses: Blogger Rips the Idaho Statesman a New One

Posted By on Sat, Dec 29, 2012 at 10:15 AM

A scathing column republished by the Tucson Journal on Dec. 27 has some choice words for Idaho, Republican Sen. Mike Crapo, and particularly the Idaho Statesman.

"Now I have some idea how Idaho comes to send us the senators they do, with newspapers like this helping to shape public opinion," wrote David Hall on his Liberty Musings Blog, aggregated by the Journal, which publishes a series of political blogs on the newspaper's website.

Hall takes the Statesman to task for its editorial, which came quickly on the heels of Crapo's drunken driving arrest in a Washington, D.C., suburb on Dec. 23.

"What happened to [Crapo] ... can happen to a lot of people, especially during the holiday season," wrote the Statesman. "Maybe he did't realize he had too much to drink when he left the social event."

But Hall lambasted the Statesman's editorial team:

"Mr. Editor, I can’t believe that you don’t see the story here. I think you’re purposely ignoring it and trying to spin this as best you can. This is not about a lapse in judgment of one drink too many on one night. You have to know that. This is about a man who has claimed to be a faithful Mormon and is not. This is a United States senator who has been living a lie for we don’t know how long. The senator is corrupt, and you are complicit by trying to sweep it under the rug.

I say this as one who has much in common with Sen. Crapo. I, too, am an LDS high priest. I am also a Republican. But I recognize that there have always been hypocrites in the Church, some of whom have risen, at times, to high position. This is why I do not automatically support LDS candidates, unlike many of my fellow Mormons. And there are many Republicans who lack integrity also. I would like to clean as many of them out of the Republican Party as we can, at least clean them out of public office. The country would be much better off."

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Friday, November 9, 2012

Idaho Statesman 'Copyrights': Really?

Posted By on Fri, Nov 9, 2012 at 9:50 AM

The Idaho Statesman has a copyrighted story in this morning's edition that reports "Boise will consider gay rights ordinance." It's a good story; it was also a good story on Oct. 24, when Boise Weekly first reported the same thing.

The Boise City Council is set to hear a proposal at its Tuesday, Nov. 13, session that would extend nondiscrimiantion protection to gender identity and sexual orientation.

"It's very important to [Council President] Maryanne Jordan and I that, in Boise, we treat everyone with dignity and respect, no matter who they love," Boise City Council Member Lauren McLean told BW. "I really feel confident that our council understands the importance of this."

Today's Statesman "copyright" follows other recent "copyrighted" stories on issues such as the Idahoan who lived through the real-life drama that inspired the hit movie Argo and new life for the old Boise Armory. Boise Weekly readers were well familiar with both from earlier BW stories.

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Newsweek to End Print Edition

Posted By on Thu, Oct 18, 2012 at 3:35 PM

After 80 years in print, Newsweek will transition to an all-digital format by early 2013.

The new version of the publication will be called Newsweek Global, explained Tina Brown, the editor-in-chief of Newsweek/Daily Beast Co., and Baba Shetty, the company's chief executive. It will be available for both tablet and the Web, and will be supported by paid subscription.

The Associated Press reports that job cuts are expected. Brown clarified that Newsweek's editorial and print operations, both in the U.S. and abroad, would be streamlined.

A Pew Research Center study found that 39 percent of Americans say they get their news from an online source.

The move doesn't come as a surprise. This past July, IAC chief Barry Diller, a majority shareholder of Newsweek, said that a move toward an all-digital format was impending.

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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Scientists: Wall Street Journal, Fox News Biased in Climate Science Reporting

Posted By on Wed, Sep 26, 2012 at 8:59 AM

The Union of Concerned Scientists says that the Wall Street Journal and Fox News are biased in their reporting on climate change. The UCS released a report this week that says both media organizations continually contain misleading coverage on the climate change issue.

The UCS report included a number of key findings:

First, over six months, 93 percent of Fox News and the Wall Street Journal opinion section had factually misleading content.

Second, over the last 12 months, 81 percent of climate science discussions on the Wall Street Journal's opinion page were incorrect—39 out of 48 instances.

The report said the news outlets "attempted to broadly undermine the major conclusions of climate science. Instances of attacks on individual scientists, mocking the science, and cherry-picking data were all equally common. Instances included accusations that scientists were fudging data and claims that they are motivated by financial self-interest."

Researchers expressed dismay at the dialogue on global warming that took place at the cable news network and the newspaper.

"It's like they were writing and talking about some sort of bizarre world where climate change isn't happening," study author Aaron Huertas told LiveScience. "It's clear that we're not having a fact-based dialogue about climate change."

One example cited was an op-ed which referred to respected NASA climate scientist James Hansen as a "global warming alarmist"—not quite his official title.

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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Washington Candidate to Reporter: 'Go Fuck Yourself'

Posted By on Wed, Aug 22, 2012 at 9:13 AM

A Republican U.S. Senate candidate in Washington state admits that he crossed the line when he told a reporter to "go fuck yourself," but the candidate said he was frustrated over the media's obsession with the scandal surrounding Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin, also a Republican, and the lack of focus on the war in Afghanistan. But late Tuesday, the candidate retracted his apology.

Seattle-based political blogger Josh Feit interviewed Republican hopeful Michael Baumgartner on Aug. 20, asking him to comment on the Akin mess, where the Missouri candidate said women's bodies could prevent pregnancies in cases of "legitimate rape." Baumgartner, who previously did diplomatic work in Iraq and Afghanistan, expressed his frustration about the lack of focus on the Afghanistan conflict.

On Aug. 21, Baumgartner emailed a photo of a soldier who was recently killed in Afghanistan to Feit, along with the message:

"Josh, this is Pat Feeks, a Navy SEAL killed last week in Afghanistan. Take a good look and then go fuck yourself."

In an interview with the Associated Press, Baumgartner apologized for his language but reiterated that he didn't think the media was giving proper attention to the war.

But Seattle television station KIRO reports that Baumgartner took back his apology and said the reporter "had it coming."

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Idaho Judge Orders Newspaper to Out Anonymous Blogger

Posted By on Wed, Jul 11, 2012 at 9:18 AM

A newspaper has been ordered to reveal the identity of an anonymous commenter on the newspaper's blog.

Idaho 1st District Judge John Luster handed down a ruling Tuesday that the Spokesman-Review must give Tina Jacobson the name of the commenter who suggested that Jacobson had stolen $10,000 from the Republican Party. Jacobson is the former chair of the Kootenai County Republican Party Central Committee.

Jacobson filed suit in April in the wake of a few unkind remarks about her on the Spokesman-Review's Huckleberries blog. On Feb. 14, a commenter, going only by the identity of "almostinnocentbystander," wrote that the missing funds were hidden on Jacobson's body.

Almostinnocentbystander" wrote: "Is that the missing $10,000 from Kootenai County Central Committee funds actually stuffed inside Tina's blouse??? Let's not try to find out."

The comment was deleted but had been visible for 2 1/2 hours.

The Spokesman-Review filed a motion to quash Jacobson's effort to reveal the identity, but to no avail.

Luster ordered the newspaper to provide any information to Jacobson that could lead to the identity of almostinnocentbystander. The ruling said the paper must provide a copy of any communication between Spokesman-Review employees and the commenter and must also confirm that almostinnocentbystander has not been re-established as a commenter on Spokesman-Review blogs.

The Spokesman-Review has 14 days to comply with the ruling. The paper reported Tuesday night that the Spokesman-Review's editor, Gary Graham, has not decided whether to pursue an appeal.

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Friday, April 13, 2012

Dustin Hurst Stretches the Truth While Reporting on Strategies 360

Posted By on Fri, Apr 13, 2012 at 9:01 AM

Dustin Hurst, one of the more active tweeters when the Idaho Legislature is in session, is no longer with the Idaho Reporter. He has moved on to Montana Watchdog, a nonprofit web-based media organization. But it's not where Hurst is working, but his journalistic methods that are making news this morning.

The Idaho Statesman's Dan Popkey reports this morning that Hurst called the Seattle office of Strategies 360 earlier this week in regards to the firm's hiring of Brian Cronin as its new senior vice president for its Boise office. But Popkey reports that Hurst didn't identify himself to Strategies 360, let alone say that he was a reporter. Instead, according to Popkey's report, Hurst identified himself as Joe Turner, someone "interested in having you help with some business." Hurst's ruse was to confirm that Cronin had recently been hired by Strategies 360.

But by then, Cronin had spoken to Popkey, as well as Boise Weekly's Andrew Crisp, about his new position and his intentions.

“I’m going to continue what I’ve done for the past 15 years, which is work in the field of marketing and communications,” Cronin said. “I’m now working for a larger company with larger clients.”

Now, Hurst is saying that he regrets the error and was planning to call Cronin and Strategies 360 to apologize.

"This was a one-time incident and not a habitual practice for me," Hurst told Popkey.

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Thursday, March 29, 2012

More Newspapers Building Higher Pay Walls

Posted By on Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 10:10 AM

The Los Angeles Times has joined the pay wall parade.

After a one-month trial at 99-cents per week, e-readers will have to pay either $1.99 per week (along with paying for a print subscription) or $3.99 weekly.

Two years ago, the Wall Street Journal was the nation’s first major publication to introduce a pay model. A year ago, The New York Times began charging its online readers for access, and a week ago, limited the number of free articles to 10 per month.

The Boston Globe now also charges for its online content and the Gannett newspaper chain recently announced that it will put 80 of its community newspapers behind a pay wall by the end of the year.

“[Newspapers] need to be more adaptable as they try to make this transition, and stop trying to recover the glory days back when they were cash cows with upward of 20 percent profit margins,” said Chris Tolles, chief executive officer of Topix told the Christian Science Monitor.

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Sunday, January 22, 2012

String of False Reports Reported Paterno Had Died Before His Passing

Posted By on Sun, Jan 22, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Legendary football coach Joe Paterno died early today, but not before a string of false reports that he had died on Saturday - set off by a student-run website and repeated by Pennsylvania radio stations, and eventually CBS Sports and CNN. The flurry of inaccurate information was still being debated today, even after Paterno's passing was officially announced Sunday morning. The ex-Penn State coach died of lung cancer, according to his family.

The false reports began Saturday evening when Onward State, a Penn State student-operated website wrote that Paterno, 85, had died. The website based its report on an email that it said had been sent to the school's football players. The report was then repeated by a State College Station, Penn., radio station. Within minutes, the false report was repeated on CBS Sports' website. The Huffington Post and Deadspin also ran the false report. Journalists, including CNN's Anderson Cooper and Howard Kurtz, re-tweeted the report, though both reporters later corrected themselves.

Paterno's family tweeted statements on Saturday evening, denying all of the media accounts, writing the ex-coach "is continuing to fight," and was "alive but in serious condition."

The episode came almost a year since another series of erroneous reports that Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords had died after being shot in Tucson, Ariz. Giffords was severely wounded in the shooting, but survived.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Obama, Hillary Clinton Most-Admired for 2011

Posted By on Wed, Dec 28, 2011 at 9:54 AM

Two former political rivals, but now colleagues, have topped the lists of the nation's most-admired men and women. President Barack Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton sit atop the annual USA Today/Gallup poll, each with 17 percent of votes cast for men and women from the worlds of politics, religion, entertainment and culture.

Obama was followed by former presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, 93-year-old evangelist Billy Graham (who has been on the list since 1946), Warren Buffett, Newt Gingrich, Donald Trump, Pope Benedict XVI, Bill Gates and Thomas Monson, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

The Secretary of State was followed on the women's list by Oprah Winfrey, Michelle Obama, Sarah Palin, former secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Laura Bush, Margaret Thatcher, Ellen DeGeneres, Queen Elizabeth II and Rep. Michele Bachmann.

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