NPR embraces local, data-driven journalism

For my latest Harvard’s Nieman Lab article, I profile StateImpact, NPR’s attempt to take the resources of a national news organization and apply them at a local level, utilizing data-driven tools:

Billed as “station-based journalism covering the effect of government actions within every state,” StateImpact essentially takes the extensive resources of a national news organization and applies them to the local level. For its initial iteration, NPR member stations

Interview with Brian Flemming, director of The God Who Wasn’t There

brian flemming director

Brian Flemming is a film director, a playwright, and an outspoken atheist. In 2005, he released the controversial documentary, The God Who Wasn’t There, a film not just arguing that Jesus wasn’t God, but that Jesus the man never existed at all. He’s also the creator of the faux documentary, Nothing So Strange,and the musical, Bat Boy.

Last year, Flemming developed the Blasphemy Challenge, which called …

National Organization for Marriage vows to fight back against Perez Hilton’s “bogus copyright claims”

perez hilton miss californiaThe gossip blogger sent DMCA takedown notices for a YouTube video because it shows three seconds from his video blog. But does the ad constitute fair use?

By the time YouTube removed an ad from the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) due to a DMCA takedown request, the video had already received thousands of views. The takedown notice had been sent to the video sharing site from representatives of Mario …

Why military bloggers are taking a nuanced approach to the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell debate

In February I interviewed several LGBT bloggers who had banded together to create a “blog swam” that pressured human rights groups into taking a more firm position on repealing the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy. The idea, I gathered, was that by speaking as a unified voice the group could exert more influence than any individual blogger. From initial press reports, the joint letter released yesterday by 15 military …

New CNN “Belief” blogger says he’ll give voice to atheist and nonbeliever issues

It’s been more than two years since CNN’s Paula Zahn Now showed “Beliefs Under Attack,” a segment featuring a Mississippi couple who had been ostracized from their community because of their disbelief in God. Following the segment, Zahn hosted a panel that included two Christians and Jewish conservative columnist Debbie Schlussel but no actual atheists. “What does an atheist believe?” one of the panelists asked. “Nothing. I think this is …

Virginia blogger outs state attorney general as a birther

While listening to the audio, one finds it difficult to discern the identity of the person asking the questions, or the venue where the questions are being asked, but the person answering the questions is almost certainly Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.

The anonymous questioner asks what can be done “about Obama and the birth certificate thing?” to which Cuccinelli responds, “It will get tested in my view when someone, …

Dave Weigel and the rise of young libertarian journalists in DC

In the wake of Dave Weigel’s resignation from the Washington Post after a number of his emails were leaked to online news outlets, dozens of bloggers and journalists penned posts honoring and defending Weigel’s journalistic integrity. One suchdefense was written by Julian Sanchez for The Atlantic’s website and is notable not because it’s different from all the other posts but because of its similarity. Like many of his colleagues, …

The New Yorker allows Facebook fans access to its paywall content

Though some of the articles published in The New Yorker each week are free, it still shelves many of them behind a paywall. But on my Facebook news feed I just caught a glimpse of a new roll-out from the magazine: web content only available on itsFacebook page:

new yorker facebook

And when you click on the link it takes you to a very New Yorker-esque Facebook version of a Jonathan …

Gawker’s Nick Denton says Gizmodo made no direct revenue from leaked iPhone post

Since Gizmodo penetrated Apple’s impenetrable fortress and posted videos and pictures of a not-yet-released iPhone earlier this week, the post has received 7,861,004 views, made it to the front page of Digg, been linked to by thousands of blogs, and retweeted over 30,000 times. A follow-up post detailing how the iPhone prototype had been lost received over 2 million views and saw similar ubiquitous coverage. Given that Gawker Media charges …

Tor authors express worry over their careers because of Macmillan/Amazon dispute

When the news broke last week that Amazon had removed Macmillan books from its available inventory, the publisher’s authors first expressed confusion and then, when it became apparent that the move wasn’t a glitch, anger. But now many of these writers are experiencing genuine worry for their own careers.

jay lakeSpeculative fiction author Jay Lake, who has had three books published by Tor with a fourth out soon, told me …