Category: Media Training Tips

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CNN’s Unprofessional Response To Trump’s Wrestling Tweet

On Sunday morning, President Donald Trump tweeted a video to his 33 million Twitter followers that featured him beating up “CNN.”

The video intensifies Trump’s long-running attack against the mainstream media—but this time through the use of violent imagery.

CNN responded by releasing a statement that felt more personal in nature than professional. And, in so doing, they might have inadvertently helped Mr. Trump by appearing more like a political opponent than a dispassionate news organization.

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Why You Shouldn’t Trust “Man On The Street” Interviews

When I worked for CNN, I occasionally went into the streets of Washington, D.C. to interview “real people” about a topic in the news.

Those interviews—known within newsrooms as an M.O.S. (“man on the street”) or a “vox pop” (derived from the Latin “voice of the people”)—always struck me as problematic.

If we interviewed 20 people about

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March 2014: The Worst Video Media Disaster

Last summer, media critic Jay Rosen announced he would no longer criticize CNN. “As of today, I have retired from criticism of CNN for falling short of some sort of journalistic standard that news providers should maintain. That activity no longer makes sense.”

Rosen argued that since CNN no longer holds itself to news standards, it

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The Worst Super Bowl Ad Of 2014

Since last night’s Super Bowl, one advertisement has stuck with me more than any other, and not for a good reason.

A Honda ad starring Bruce Willis—ostensibly about car safety—was manipulative at best, the advertising equivalent of a bait and switch. 

The ad started with a close-up of Bruce Willis, soft music playing in the background. He

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Falsely Accused: The Sad Life Of Richard Jewell

The mainstream media have a sad track record of labeling innocent people as murderers.

Just last month, several news organizations named the wrong man in the Navy Yard shootings. The New York Post identified the wrong Boston Marathon bombers. Many news outlets reported that Adam Lanza’s innocent brother was the Newtown school shooter.

But one name symbolizes

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How One Man Defeated A Biased Interviewer

I’ve seen a lot of biased, ill-informed, and journalistically lazy interviews through the years, and this one was one of the worst. But the author who was the target of the anchor’s ire stood up to her questions well—and, in part due to his deft handling of that interview, currently has Amazon’s top-selling book.

Writer Reza

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A Small Thanks To Helen Thomas

Journalism just lost one of its most dynamic and dedicated stars.

Veteran reporter Helen Thomas died on Saturday at the age of 92. A pioneer for women in journalism, she was the first woman to cover the president and not just the First Lady; the first female president of the White House Correspondents Association; and, above

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Are Journalists Rebelling Against Going Off-The-Record?

Attorney General Eric Holder is meeting with bureau chiefs from major news outlets this week for off-the-record sessions. They’re discussing the recent revelations that the Department of Justice seized phone records from Associated Press reporters and investigated Fox News reporter James Rosen for his reporting of sensitive leaked government information.

Not everybody is playing ball –

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