Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Newspaper Cutbacks Means Less Real News - More Sex

Newspaper Cutbacks Means Less Real News - More Sex

Let's face it: TV and radio stations rely on the local newspaper for most of their news. So what happens to those "rip and read" broadcasters as print staffs shrivel amid the draconian layoffs strafing the newspaper industry? Print journalists have long chafed at broadcast media pilfering their stories, often without bothering to credit the source. The thinness in assembling TV news -- and the manner in which they use newspapers as de facto tip sheets and newsgathering surrogates - has long been one of broadcasting's dirty little secrets.

Several experienced New York TV Reporters were "let go" recently. This is a national cost cutting trend in local television news that can only make TV news' already weakened ability to go beyond rip and read news content even weaker. High definition will guarantee even more inexpensive, and inexperienced anchors and reporters . Why you ask? It's simple really -- only 20- and 30-years-olds look good on high definition. Even though the seasoned reporter might deliver invaluable information, some idiot from some focus group tells the corporations " I just hate her hair!" The corporations next move? An ad -- fresh meat wanted. . . Secret tape of next years new NY local TV news program.

As newspapers go out of business and experienced reporters leave, local news will have more time for ratings grabbers “Happy Talk” also called banter. It may consist of simple jokes or simply a modified wording in asking a question of another reporter. For instance, instead of a simple handoff to a sportscaster, an anchor might say, "So, Dave, what the heck happened out on that field today? Is our team going down the tubes?"

Today, most Americans say they get most of their information from local television news. How well are local broadcasters living up to the public interest promises they made in order to get their licenses? Edward R. Murrow answered that question 50 years ago. “This instrument can teach, it can illuminate; yes, and it can even inspire. But it can do so only to the extent that humans are determined to use it to those ends. Otherwise it is merely wires and lights in a box."

TV News consultants design sexy reporting "happy talk" news formats not with the idea to inform but with the goal of attracting high ratings. That role for TV news was not as dangerous, with strong newspapers fulfilling the role of informing the public with what they need to know. As print fades, the fallout promises to hasten broadcast news' descent as well -- from "Rip and read" to simply "read it and weep." Our Democracy is in serious trouble.

Albany & City Play to Play CITY LINK IN STATE $CANDAL Indicted political consultant Hank Morris first link between the accused pay-to-play power broker -- charged with taking kickbacks from firms looking to do business with the state's retirement fund -- and the New York City Employees Retirement System, which has an estimated worth of $30.4 billion *** N.Y. politicians spending thousands of campaign dollars on food Local lawmakers used campaign cash as a veritable stimulus package for the restaurant industry during the first three months of the year, new federal, more than $12,000 by Congressman Charles Rangel *** Former Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno wants the feds to tone down the language of its 8-page indictment. *** As the state pension fund progresses, AG Andrew Cuomo wants to cut out middlemen who make big placement fees and institute other reforms and changes at the comptroller's office *** White House Says It Stands Behind Rattner - WSJ.com *** The Ties to State's Pension Probe *** Díaz Unites Bronx Democrats in Race for Borough President *** Morris Emerges as Central to Probe of New York Fund (Update1) - Bloomberg.com *** Rattner, Judged by His Peers *** Bronx Rep Pedro Espada, Anti-Toll Stalwart, Lives in Westchester

Washington Play to Play Lawmaker Is Said to Have Agreed to Aid Lobbyists Representative Jane Harman was overheard on calls agreeing to seek favorable treatment from the Bush administration for two pro-Israel lobbyists investigated for espionage *** PAPER: Senator's husband cashes in on crisis...Feinstein sought $25 billion for agency that awarded contract to spouse... *** Lawyers Rush In to Grab Work From Lobbyists *** If Steve Rattner's Scandal Sounds A Lot Like Bill Richardson's, There's A Reason For That - Rattner, for his part, has donated $20,000 to Richardson's gubernatorial campaigns, $15,000 of that after he nabbed the state retirement fund investment *** Blago Show a No-Go

Road to City Hall RUDY HAILS DEM 'RIVAL' Cuomo *** MIKE A VOLUNTEER-JERKER He wants your vote, he wants your taxes and now he wants you to volunteer *** Shocker: Unions, developers give a lot of dough to pols From the Daily News *** Bloomie chickens out From the Daily News:Mayor Bloomberg ruffled feathers by bowing out of the forum sponsored by Teamsters Local 237, citing a scheduling conflict *** Bloomberg Launches Citywide Volunteer Program *** In MTV Style, Mayor Urges New Yorkers to Get Out and Volunteer *** Bloomberg to require community service opportunities at public schools *** Bad Day for Bloomberg, or a Personality Trait? In an incident involving a disabled reporter, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg flashed a sullen side that New Yorkers have seen a lot lately *** Díaz Unites Bronx Democrats in Race for Borough President *** Weiner: Bloomberg 'Lied' To Extend Term Limits *** Clyde Haberman notes Bloomberg has been in a bad mood a lot lately and wonders: "Could it be that, having entertained a possible run for president, he finds the prospect of four more years at City Hall less than thrilling?" *** End Of The Farrell Era Is Near *** Sure, he can afford them: Mayor goes to bat for Yanks, Mets over ticket prices Mayor Bloomberg shrugged off the sky-high ticket prices fans are paying at city's two new baseball parks, built largely with tax-free government bonds *** For NYC's Green, endorsements where he can find them *** The Council's Contributors *** Yassky Campaign Seeks Financial Info on Melinda Katz *** Special Election For Bronx Borough President *** Bloomberg Is Brooklyn GOP's 'Man of The Year' *** Without a Democratic Primary, Where Will the Housing Ideas Come From?

Times' Editorial Suppressing the Vote in Florida The Florida Legislature is at it again — threatening to pass bills that would make it harder for eligible voters to register and vote.True News Says Times Should Look At Their Own House First!

Times' Article No Campaign in the Bronx Díaz Unites Bronx Democrats in Race for Borough President *** True News on New York Suppressing the Vote The Real Campaign is to Suppress Challengers *** NY's Falling Voter Participation More Times A Tale of Two Palins Politico and the NYT offer conflicting assessments of the Alaska governor

The City IT'S JOLLY ROGER! PIRATE IS ALL SMILES FOR HIS NY CLOSE-UP *** HAMPTONS' HOMELESS GROWING *** 'HUDSON MIRACLE' SURVIVOR: BIRD $#+! A survivor of the jet that splash-landed in the Hudson River after flying into a flock of geese says a government proposal to keep bird-strike data hush-hush doesn't fly. " *** FOWL PLAY IN QNS. BLACKOUT PARROTS' NESTS CUT ELECTRICITY *** FREDDY SEZ: HEY! LET ME IN! NEW STADIUM SNUBS OLD YANKEE MASCOT *** NO BUTTS ABOUT IT: PRICIEST SEATS COME UP EMPTY Yankees $2625 seat a game go unused *** Captured Somali Pirate To Appear In Manhattan Court *** Unemployment Benefits Drying Up For Thousands Of City Residents *** Charter Schools Weigh Freedom Against the Protection of a Union *** Suit Says Faulty Elevators in Public Housing Violate Rights of Tenants *** City loses fewer jobs than expected *** Large foundations plan to cut back giving *** More in city spending half of pay on rent DN Editorial: Picking the winners New York City parents are trying to opt out of local public schools in dramatic numbers. Given freedom of choice, they would more than vote with their feet - they would stampede to better educations for their children *** Archbishop Dolan says mass for prisoners *** Captured Pirate Arrives in New York *** PLAYTIME 101: SAVE SANDBOX There's trouble in the playground. Protests from parents have New York University officials rethinking plans to close two popular sandboxes in a private playground in Washington Square *** Life Sentence For Slain Dentist's Wife *** Brooklyn Museum Budget Woes *** Caroline Kennedy Shoots Down Vatican Ambassador Rumors

Albany ELIOT BEATS DAVE: POLL *** NEW GIG FOR SILVER AIDE Lobbyist Patricia Lynch was hired by national advocacy group that backs extending mayoral control of New York City schools *** POL PUT TENURE REFORM OUT OF 'COMMISSION' An effort to reform the lax state teacher-tenure rules that allow bad-apple educators to stay on the job for years was effectively killed by a low-key politician from Queens. Assemblywoman Nolan *** JOINT SESSION: NY POLS BID FOR MED MARIJUANA *** Here's a stunningly bad idea for govern ing city schools: Make them account able to no one *** Toby threatens to have constituent arrested From American Daughter: An elected official is threatening to press charges against a constituent who sent her a tea bag. Toby Ann Stavisky *** Many state, city and federal government jobs in New York pay surprisingly well and include benefits that far surpass those of the private sector *** Russell Simmons to Paterson: ‘let your heart lead’ *** AG seeks conduct code Andrew Cuomo wants to impose a "code of conduct" on firms doing business with the state pension fund *** Bill Hammond As the debate over same-sex partnerships heats up in Albany, let's put one distrac... *** Has gay marriage reached a tipping point in NY? *** Pot bill may find buds in Senate *** Rudy on warpath against gov, Dems *** Monserrate dumps his att'y for legal top gun *** Panel to unveil host of legislative reforms *** Jay Gallagher points out that people around the country were protesting taxes at tea party rallies, yet many have no idea the kind of taxes New Yorkers pay *** The fate of some 1,800 absentee ballots rests in the hands of state Supreme Court Justice James Brands. *** Giuliani Says New York Should Be 'Ashamed' of Its Present Course *** Unions want in on large state-funded projects. *** The Albany Project's Philip Anderson will work for the State Senate *** Senate GOP: Reform report is ‘window dressing’ *** Latest in the 20th: Murphy up by 273; court wrangling but end may be near *** Another Bad Transit Plan from the State Senate *** Smith Says He Has Votes For MTA Plan *** Republicans Call Rules Reform Window Dressing

MTA Crisis HIKE 1 FARE, SAVE ANOTHER: SMITH Senate Majority Leader Smith says he knows how to save subway and bus riders from drastic fare hikes -- add $1 to each city taxi ride *** Cash crunch could derail MTA workers' raises *** Latest MTA Bailout Plan Looks To Riders Outside City *** Senate Shapes New Rescue Plan for M.T.A. *** Senate rolls out MTA plan *** Dem bigs vow bailout vote soon *** Senate Democrats propose an MTA plan that include a number of fees on taxis, auto-rentals, and a payroll tax. But no bridge tolls. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver asks if they have the votes. Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith says he expects to have enough votes to pass, including Republicans. *** Silver on Smith's M.T.A. Plan: 'Do They Have the Votes?' *** Senate Democrats Push New MTA Bailout Plan

President Obama O'S SPANS SPARKING DOT QUALM cybersecurity strategy *** OBAMA OFFERS A 'LIFT' TO THE CIA *** NEWT RIPS O-HUGO GREET *** National service bill to get Obama's signature *** Oversight panel has bailout questions for Geithner *** PROMISES, PROMISES: Obama and black farmers *** Obama defends secret memo release to CIA employees *** Obama orders Cabinet to cut spending by $100M *** Nonprofit Groups to Push for Exceptions to Lobby Rule *** Big-Spending Conservative President Obama is arguing for his activist agenda as a defense of middle-class morality and is positioning Democrats as the party of order and small-town values. This should make Republicans nervous, Brooks, NYT *** Obama Proposes $100 Billion Loan for I.M.F. *** Obama Doesn’t Plan to Reopen Nafta Talks *** Geithner Weighs Bank Repayments *** Spies Breach U.S. Fighter-Jet Project *** Treasury Pressures Chrysler, Fiat *** Don't fear introspection, Obama tells CIA during torture memo pep rally *** Obama pledges $100M in agency cuts *** Don't fear torture talk, Bam tells CIA *** U.S. Army enlists Facebook, Twitter *** Will Obama Investigate CIA? *** Clinton, Bush Book Joint Appearance *** Obama Takes Aim at Credit Cards *** Sometimes, a President Must Slap Back - Eugene Robinson, Washington Post *** When is Torture Morally Defensible? - Damon Linker, The New Republic *** Obama & Clinton: The Apologists - Pat Buchanan, Pittsburgh Trib-Review *** Obama Splits the Difference on Brutal Questionings - Pittsburgh PG *** Tipping Terrorists: Obama Shows Our Hand - NH Union Leader *** Cheney wants CIA files for memoir *** Bush, Clinton Plan Public Chat in Toronto *** Treasury Secretary defends the bank rescue program *** Obama: Legal action on Bush rules up to Justice *** Obama, Bush Run Up Public Trust Deficit - Amity Shlaes, Bloomberg *** Senate Panel Clears Sebelius for HHS Post *** COMMUNICATIONS SHAKE UP *** Netanyahu Gets a Meeting

Congress Divided committee to vote on health secretary *** Pressure Grows to Investigate Interrogations *** Bid to Organize Nurses Faces Setback in Congress *** Conn. senator taps Wall Street campaign money *** Health Care Words Versus Realities - Thomas Sowell, RealClearPolitics *** Why Republicans are devouring one book *** Lieberman: Memo helps *** Members battle the bulge *** Immigration: Is this the year? *** Chris Shays living a 'nightmare' *** Lawyers gun for lobbyists' money *** Climate debate tests clean coal power ***Hill gears up for big climate week *** Coleman files appeal *** Visclosky looks for help on legal fees *** Sens. promise health care bill by June *** A conservative health care champion *** CBC's Cuba visit betrays human rights *** AU students protest Barney speech *** Lawyers are fighting over how to count ballots in the 20th Congressional race *** Legislators and lenders wrangle over the details of letting courts modify mortgages. *** There are still 1550 ballots to count in the race to replace Kirsten Gillibrand. *** Pete King suggested that Muslims were uncooperative with law enforcement *** Rep. Peter King refused to retract comments he made that some in the Muslim-American community found offensive *** Slow Start To Midterm Races - Charlie Cook, National Journal *** Obama’s Outrageous Sin Against Our Kids - Juan Williams, FOX News *** National Elections Getting Closer; Individual Congressional Elections Getting Less Close *** Ron Paul gets a tough lesson on why all-out libertarian live-and-let-live doesn't always work: sometimes people lie *** Harman: "If There Are Tapes Out There, Bring It On!" *** Franken Seeks to Accelerate Appeal

National FBI's newest 'Most Wanted' terrorist is American *** Justices hear arguments over school strip search *** After Cancer, Family Looks for Coverage *** Immigration and the Unions Making the pro-union case for reform is not going to be easy. Even as immigration has changed the face of many American unions, hostility to foreigners remains a problem, NYT *** When Builders Build Bad Loans A promising bill in the California Legislature would prohibit corporate home builders from doubling as lenders, issuing mortgages on the homes they build, NYT Ed *** In Missouri, Investors Seek a Profit in Branson Airport *** GreenUS Water "Legally" Contaminated With Tons Of Drugs *** Texas Drought Threatens Wildlife *** Student Loans: Default Rates Soar *** Craigslist Killing Suspect Nabbed *** Bottom Line for the Uninsured - Froma Harrop, Providence Journal *** A civil case begins over the allegedly failed channel design in Hurricane Katrina’s devastating effects in New Orleans *** San Fran mayor announces he's running for governor...

International Will Obama meet with China's nemesis, Dalai Lama? *** Blackwater out of Iraq? No, not yet *** Crisis or Not, Russia Will Build a Bridge in the East *** Name Not on Our List? Change It, China Says *** More Hatred From Mr. Ahmadinejad The United Nations conference on racism can never have credibility if it is used to attack one country, Israel, especially when many other countries have abysmal human rights records, NYT Ed *** Spain’s Falling Prices Fuel Deflation Fears in Europe *** China Influence Grows With Car Sales *** Europe Starts Inquiry of Airline Alliances *** Ahmadinejad Calls Israel 'Racist' *** China Mulls New Rules for Loans *** Russian Minister to Visit North Korea *** Germany Considers Job Programs *** Push to transform Saddam's palace into a hotel *** Cuba Central to Latin America Relations - DeWayne Wickham, USA Today *** Zionism and Racism, Again: Durban II - Ruth Wedgwood, World Affairs *** Turkey Proves It Doesn't Belong in the EU - Christopher Hitchens, Slate *** King Abdullah to be on Meet the Press

Wall Street Mess COVERING HER ASSETS MADOFF WIFE BIDS TO KEEP MILLIONS *** Bank Aid Programs Are Seen as Open to Fraud *** Stanford Points Fingers in Fraud Case *** Profit Up, Bank of America Chief Cites Acquisitions *** Chrysler Unit Said to Lose Aid Over Pay Issue *** Radio Giant Is Planning to Revamp Its Debt Load *** Judge keeps Madoff assets secure for forfeiture *** AIG completes stock sale to government *** FT: Business Needs To Speak Out Against Greed *** A $4.2 Billion Profit Isn't a Fix for BofA *** Firms End Key Benefit for Executives *** Food Firms Cook Up Ways to Combat Slump *** Oil Prices Skid Below $46 a Barrel *** Fannie CEO Won't Get Pay Raise *** Can Small Cars Overcome Crash Fears? *** With Jobs Tight, M.B.A.s Head for Home *** U.S. Aid Sought for Equity-Backed Firms Venture capitalists and angel investors are pushing the U.S. to give them access to small-business programs traditionally reserved for noninvestor-backed businesses *** The Wail of the 1% The rage of the formerly privileged class *** Is Vikram Pandit Finished? *** The government may allow rescued banks to suspend interests payments on government loans, to allow them to build up their capital reserves *** Fortune: Fortune 500: The 20 biggest losers *** Bankers Leave Street in Rear View; Head for Academia

Media A Magazine Just for You Arrives With Glitches *** The Times Wins 5 Pulitzer Prizes *** Plan to Fight Illegal Downloads Faces Opposition *** CNN To Treat Obama's 100th Day Like Election Night *** One of This Year’s Pulitzer Winners Was Laid Off Back in January *** What drama! B'klyn writer wins Pulitzer *** NY Times Lost $74 Million During First Quarter *** Dismal Ad Revenue Sends Times to $75M Loss *** YAHOO TO CUT MORE JOBS AS PROFIT FALLS *** Twitter Traffic Soars On Ashton Kutcher, Oprah Buzz