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Monday, July 01, 2013

media-whore d'oeuvres


Media-Whore D'Oeuvres
 
 
"In a refracted media world where information comes from everywhere, the line between two 'isms' — journalism and activism — is becoming difficult to discern. As American news media have pulled back from international coverage, nongovernmental organizations have filled in the gaps with on-the-scene reports and Web sites. State houses have lost reporters who used to provide accountability, so citizens have turned to digital enterprises, some of which have partisan agendas. The question of who is a journalist and who is an activist and whether they can be one and the same continues to roar along, most recently in the instance of Glenn Greenwald’s reporting for The Guardian on the secrets revealed by Edward J. Snowden. Sometimes, a writer’s motives or leanings emerge between the lines over time, but you need only to read a few sentences of Mr. Greenwald’s blog to know exactly where he stands. Mr. Greenwald is an activist who is deeply suspicious of government and the national security apparatus, and he is a zealous defender of privacy and civil rights. He is also a journalist. Taxonomy is important, partly because when it comes to divulging national secrets, the law grants journalists special protections that are afforded to no one else. To exclude some writers from the profession is to leave them naked before a government that is deeply unhappy that its secret business is on wide display.In that context, 'activist' has become a code word for someone who is driven by an agenda beyond seeking information on the public’s behalf. I found out as much last week when an article I wrote with a colleague about WikiLeaks called Alexa O’Brien an 'activist.'"  (David Carr)
"President Rafael Correa is on a tear this week – thumbing his nose at the United States over Edward Snowden, suggesting he might harbor the international fugitive here in this tiny Latin American country even if it means abandoning trade agreements worth millions to the local economy.
But, why? Correa’s agitating has catapulted him into the leading anti-U.S. voice in the region, making him heir to another populist Latin American leader famous for ticking off American presidents with leftist rhetoric for 14 years — Hugo Chavez. But while Chavez had vast Venezuelan oil fields to force the First World to pay attention, Correa doesn’t. So he’s latched onto the cases of big-name leakers, like Snowden and Julian Assange – who’s holed up in Ecuador’s embassy in London — to muscle his way into headlines around the globe in an effort to raise his international profile. Plus, helping out Snowden — which Correa says reminds the world Ecuardor is a bastion of human rights — could even give his image at home a boost, since he recently signed a law cracking down on the country’s media. The irony isn’t lost on the press here." (Politico)
 
 
"Last Thursday morning at 11 at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, they held a memorial service for Paul Soros who died on June 15th, just ten days after his 87th birthday. Mr. Soros had been very ill for the past several years – although he made the best of it and lived his life to the fullest possible right to the end. There were several hundred guests all but filling the auditorium, including many of the city’s prominent philanthropists, businessmen and the many friends of Mr. Soros and his wife Daisy. Memorials of this sort – of prominent New Yorkers are uniquely impressive because of the great public curiosity and the guests they draw. The program began promptly at 11. Peter Soros, the eldest of the two Soros sons, spoke first, followed by his brother Jeffrey; then by the Soros grandchildren – Preston, Simon, Sabrina, Tommy Soros; then Stella Powell-Jones, a relative through marriage, and then his nephew Robert Soros. His younger brother George, was not present." (NYSocialDiary
 
 
 
"After 11 years of creating some of the oddest and most memorable characters on Saturday Night Live, Fred Armisen left the legendary sketch show at the end of this past season to focus on his other soon-to-be legendary sketch show. Portlandia, which he and co-star Carrie Brownstein created with director Jonathan Krisel, has be picked up for two more seasons on IFC. He will also been seen in the upcoming film Justice for Al, from Bad Santa director Terry Zwigoff. I caught up with Armisen over the phone from Portland to talk about great sketch shows and how Game of Thrones influenced Portlandia. So it is official now that you’ve leftSNLI think it's clear. I didn't do any kind of official announcement, but I really felt like it was obvious. An ending that was a love letter to all the music I grew up with, and also to my friends and to SNL and to Lorne and to the cast. There was a lot of emotion attached to it, but it was a very positive emotion." (Splitsider

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