Major League Baseball, which has profited handsomely from selling the notion that baseball teams are part of the community -- like the local park, or the high school -- in order to get public funding for baseball stadiums, is shifting back to we're a private business mode for a dispute with news organizations' Web sites.
Editor & Publisher magazine reports MLB is trying to quash the use of pictures of baseball games by newspaper Web sites.
Targeted are photo "galleries," a series of snapshots depicting -- usually -- the most recent game.
The Photo District News Web site says MLB is also requiring reporters "to seek permission to produce audio and video reports of game interviews, and limits audio and video reports made within the ballparks to two minutes or less."
"Your new terms impose a form of prior restraint on the use of visual images (both still and video) that will negatively impact the editorial independence of our members and the press as a whole," said Tony Overman, head of the National Press Photographers Association.
Historically, media organizations and pro sports franchises have had an incestuous relationship, but the trend now -- as shown by the NFL's media moves -- is to control the marketing, err, coverage, of the product and cut the news organization out of the picture.
In the incredible sorrow surrounding the funerals for the kids who were killed in the bus crash in Cottonwood, comes a little bit of a lift from Rae Krueger, the reporter for the Marshall Independent.
Krueger tells the story of thousands of cupcakes which showed up to help feed the people who attended the funerals:
“We had no idea where some came from,” said Marilyn Jarcho, the head cook at Lakeview School who helped with the Javens and Stevens funerals at the school. Jarcho also helped with Olson’s funeral at Christ Lutheran Church in Cottonwood on Sunday.
In the big scheme of things, of course, they're just cupcakes, but sometimes, that's all we've got.(1 Comments)
A few weeks ago in this space, we kicked around the question of what defines patriotic. Unfortunately, the discussion was spawned by Michele Obama's comments, and it's near impossible to have a reflective conversation that's not tainted by the passion of a current campaign.
As it happens, though, I stumbled across an American Masters documentary on PBS last night on Pete Seeger, who changed a lot about this country with a banjo and a song.
It came painfully says Seeger, now nearly 89, who acknowledges he still has some friends who are Communists. "I read their newspaper and there's occasionally some good stories there. And I read the Wall Street Journal and occasionally they have some good stories there."
His biographer noted that the FBI pursued Seeger until the only job he could get was singing to kids, said David Dunaway. "They never thought there'd be a problem with Pete Seeger singing to six year olds. Little did they know that out of that came not a subversive movement, but an American folk music revival that I think we have to give the FBI credit for helping to establish."
"My father was a total patriot and his patriotism was completely misunderstood," his son said in the documentary.
Lost amid the fog of age, however, is the role a TV variety show could play in political debate in the '60s. In November 1967, the height of the Vietnam War, the Smothers Brothers invited Seeger on their show (he hadn't been allowed on TV in more than a decade), in which he sang "Waist Deep in the Big Muddy." It was censored by CBS. The Smothers Brothers protested, and he was allowed back to sing it again He set the audience up with 4 minutes of traditional folk music considered acceptable, and then hit them with one of the most powerful -- if forgotten -- moments in the history of television.
Well, I'm not going to point any moral;
I'll leave that for yourself
Maybe you're still walking, you're still talking
You'd like to keep your health.
But every time I read the papers
That old feeling comes on;
We're -- waist deep in the Big Muddy
And the big fool says to push on.
Pete Seeger still stands on a street corner of his town in upstate New York, holding up a sign that says "Peace," and people still drive by wondering why one person thinks he can change the world.(31 Comments)
Efforts to lower auto emissions in Minnesota probably have been weed whacked by the White House.
The Environmental Protection Agency did so by refusing to grant California a waiver that would've allowed it to enforce emissions rules that are tougher than the federal standards.
According to the Associated Press, EPA argues that California doesn't have the "compelling and extraordinary conditions" required for a waiver under the Clean Air Act, because the rest of the nation also suffers the effects of global warming. Today's 48-page decision can be found here.
A dozen states have similar laws pending and Rep. Melissa Hortman, DFL-Brooklyn Park, wants to add Minnesota to the list. Her bill has advanced past one committee but may now be moot.
"A patchwork quilt of inconsistent and competing fuel economy programs at the state level would only have created confusion, inefficiency, and uncertainty for automakers and consumers," said Dave McCurdy, president and CEO of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers.(1 Comments)
Posted at 1:11 PM on February 29, 2008
by Bob Collins
A lot of bandwidth was expended -- some would say wasted -- after Monday night's forum about online standards for bloggers, at least as it relates to those traditionally held -- if not always followed -- by the media.
Mark Glaser, a media critic/new media "expert" writes on PBS.org, "the time-worn debate of Bloggers vs. Journalists has finally run its course." Well, it should have run its course by now, and moved on to the next phase. And for the most part, it has.
We all probably could've saved a lot of time this week by reading Glaser's post today out loud.
Still unclear is whether anybody who doesn't blog and isn't employed by a news organization cares.
New research by a University of New Hampshire domestic abuse expert says spanking children affects their sex lives as adults.
Professor Murray Straus, at the University of New Hampshire renews the debate over spanking today with a study that says spanking children affects their sex lives as adults. Straus found that people who were spanked as children were more likely to coerce their partner into having sex.
One has to be careful about these sorts of studies that ask two questions and then create a cause and effect. Unless other questions are asked, the link can be questionable. We saw this a few months ago with a terribly flawed study that suggested people without children are happier.
Add the study on spanking as a datapoint to all the other -- occasionally contradictory -- studies on the subject, such as:
* Children who are spanked tend to be more anxious and aggressive than those who aren't, but this is less true in cultures where physical punishment is common. (2005)
*An occasional swat, when delivered in the context of good child-rearing, has not been shown to do any harm. (2001)
* Children spanked by their parents are twice as likely to develop drug and alcohol problems in adulthood. (1999)
* Parents who spank their children risk causing long-term harm that outweighs the short-term benefit of instant obedience. (2002)(1 Comments)
Among the very odd -- though entertaining -- elements of journalism, is when a beaten news institution applies an unspecified ethic to another.
What we do know is that the site claimed the story as an exclusive with the trademarked attribution, “the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.” Neil Wallis, the executive editor of News of the World, today slammed Mr. Drudge for the “cheap shot,” considering all the publications that obeyed an embargo, including his own.
“Any number of newspapers or broadcasters in this country could have claimed that as far back as December,” he told Sky News.
The Times goes further, posing several questions that, though not their own, also appear designed to force Drudge -- certainly no factor in the high-fact, low-ego competition -- to explain himself:
– Why did he blow Harry’s cover?
– Would he have done the same if it were the children of President Bush or Senator Hillary Clinton?
– What took him so long? (The secret was safe for 10 weeks).
Let's take a step back here and recall that it was the New York Times that published a story that didn't bother with the proof of an intimation that John McCain was having an affair with a female lobbyist.
It was also the Times, of course, that printed the Pentagon papers. More recent, it was the Times which printed details of how the government tracks the finances of terrorist organizations, it was the Times that revealed the domestic eavesdropping by the U.S. government. And it was the Times which withheld plans for the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba, certainly a disaster that could've been avoided.
The Prince Harry story, for the record, was a good story. Should it have been leaked? That's open to debate; a debate we can now have -- and it pains me to write the following words -- thanks to Matt Drudge.
But if we're going to question Drudge on his ability not to keep a secret from us, it also behooves us to question the world's leading journalism organizations to explain to us fully why they did.(12 Comments)