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Big news on the publishing front: Newsweek is going all-digital, two years after its merger with The Daily Beast. »
It is important that we underscore what this digital transition means and, as importantly, what it does not. We are transitioning Newsweek, not saying goodbye to it. We remain committed to Newsweek and to the journalism that it represents. This decision is not about the quality of the brand or the journalism—that is as powerful as ever. It is about the challenging economics of print publishing and distribution.
Newsweek is produced by a gifted and tireless team of professionals who have been offering brilliant work consistently throughout a tough period of ownership transition and media disruption. Regrettably we anticipate staff reductions and the streamlining of our editorial and business operations both here in the U.S. and internationally.
Exiting print is an extremely difficult moment for all of us who love the romance of print and the unique weekly camaraderie of those hectic hours before the close on Friday night. But as we head for the 80th anniversary of Newsweek next year we must sustain the journalism that gives the magazine its purpose—and embrace the all-digital future.
Sad news: This is one of the first really big magazines to drop the print edition.
At least we’ll always have the Newsweek tumblr.
Tweeting and social networking are letting a hundred thousand press barons bloom without any accountability. And this mass mediatocracy reveals the universal trait behind all penmanship, virtual or otherwise: the desire for Klout. The fact that Knoller’s power was checked by Twitter because he was a journalist just did the mediaverse a huge favor: it reminded everyone that the freedom of the press requires accountability — and accountability demands a separation of the professional journalist from the personal, peeved tweeter.
We need to treat news as if it were no different than booze, with moderate consumption being as good for the head as moderate drinking is for the heart. Too much, however, and you become a menace to yourself and the world, constantly fretting about imaginary threats and all encompassing conspiracies.
Republicans frequently complain that news reporters are cheerleaders for President Obama. But a new study by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism says it’s Obama who “has suffered the most unrelentingly negative treatment” of all the presidential candidates over the past five months. Pew found that only 9 percent of news stories about Obama were “positive” during that period. On the GOP side, Texas Gov. Rick Perry got the best treatment, with 32 percent positive coverage. Has the press soured on Obama?
Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images
The Korengal Valley is said to be the deadliest place in Afghanistan. What was your first impression when you arrived?
It looked like Colorado, like the American west. It was very beautiful. And I just thought what a great place to go camping or kayaking. If it wasn’t Afghanistan, it would be a haven for outdoor adventure sports.
You’ve said that you won’t be returning to war reporting.
Seeing what Tim’s death did to me and my wife and others, a light bulb went on. I didn’t want to be the cause of that pain to the people I’m closest to. I’ve done this for 20 years and there is a point you come to where you’re repeating the same stunt. I’ll continue reporting from overseas but if I find myself getting shot at – this is how I explained it to my wife – I will consider it embarrassing and a personal failure in a similar way to as if I had a car accident.
What are you currently working on?
I’m working on a film about Tim and I’m starting a medical training program for freelance journalists, a three-day training course in battlefield medicine. It will be three times a year in New York, London and Beirut. We’re hoping to make the certification an industry norm in the next few years. Tim’s wound didn’t have to be mortal. He bled out but there are things you can do about that, but no one around him was equipped to do them and so he died.
Photo: Hetherington and Junger in Afghanistan, 2008. © Tim Hetherington
The original story of Times New Roman’s genesis goes like this: Morison wrote a blistering article in 1929 arguing that Times Old Roman, the font of The Times of London, was dated, clunky, badly printed and in need of help — his help. The paper listened and charged Morison with directing the creation of a new suite of letters. He did, and on Oct. 3, 1943, Times New Roman debuted on the bright white broadsheets of the London daily.
Here’s the problem with this tidy account: Evidence found in 1987 — drawings for letters and corresponding brass plates — suggests that the real father of the font wasn’t a typographer at all, but a wooden boat designer from Boston named William Starling Burgess.
Journalism just doesn’t feel comfortable with interpreting news or reporting or analyzing numbers, so the criteria for accurate science reporting have become limited to those facts that were clearly objective and understandable — did I quote Professor X accurately, get his title right, correctly report what his research says? Which means we end up with the perplexing situation that, even though there is nothing inaccurate with the media coverage of the addiction study, we’d be wrong to accept the coverage — or the authors’ policy recommendations — at face value.