Thursday, November 21, 2002

Pieces, Particles IX
The following media-related stories recently spotted in print publications might be worth a look. Heads and decks, only. Heads and decks.

The Bean Book, Down East, December 2002
It's always interesting to read about yourself.

Between the Lines by Dennis Cass, Mother Jones, November/December 2002

Business as Usual by Miles Maguire, American Journalism Review, October 2002
While news organizations have energetically uncovered corporate abuses and editorialized for reforms, their parent companies have been less than enthusiastic in applying the new standards to their own operations.

The Curse of Tom Wolfe by Michael Shapiro, Columbia Journalism Review, November/December 2002
First, a story. Or rather an "anecdotal lead," which seems essential when writing about magazines -- in this case, where they've gone wrong and how maybe they might recapture one of the great pleasures they've lost: the story. Not the article. Not the piece. The story.

The Cutting Room Floor by Tad Friend, The New Yorker, Nov. 18, 2002
Unseen TV

Does Size Matter? by Michael Scherer, Columbia Journalism Review, November/December 2002
Chances are you won't bother to read this article. It is just one long block of text, after all, unbroken by alluring pictures, snappy captions, or eye-grabbing infographics. You can't click it. You can't flip it. All you can do is read it.

Finding a Niche by Jill Rosen, American Journalism Review, November 2002
From ferrets to tattoos: Specialization is the name of the game in today's crowded magazine world.

Getting a Lot out of "Two Cents" by Joe Strupp, Editor & Publisher, Oct. 21, 2002
Homegrown database helps "Chronicle" reporters meet sources willing to talk

Going Long, Going Deep by Scott Sherman, Columbia Journalism Review, November/December 2002
The Atlantic, one of the few American magazines that still dares to publish high-quality, complex narratives, sits in Boston's Little Italy, a slightly raffish neighborhood with narrow, twisting streets and filled with comfortable little restaurants, espresso bars, and cheese shops.

Hard-Core Philanthropist by Jay Cheshes, Mother Jones, November/December 2002
How can a vibrator in Topeka help halt the spread of AIDS in Hanoi? Just ask Phil Harvey, porn magnate and social entrepreneur.

"How Did I Do This Before Google?" by William Prochnau, American Journalism Review, November 2002
The relationship between newspapers and computers got off to a shaky start, but it was destined to go the distance. What are the ramifications?

Ink by Tad Friend, The New Yorker, Nov. 11, 2002
Finders keeper

Jailhouse Talk by Laura Fraser, Mother Jones, November/December 2002
On Friday nights, prisoners across Texas tune in to hear the voice of a gay ex-con and -- just maybe -- a message from home.

Letter to an Ex-Contrarian by Katha Pollitt, The Nation, Nov. 25, 2002

The Life and Times of AJR by Lori Robertson, American Journalism Review, November 2002
Back in the 1970s, a lowly grad student named Roger Kranz had a crazy idea and a VW bug. The rest is history.

Lilly Heir Makes $100 Million Bequest to Poetry Magazine by Stephen Kinzer, The New York Times, Nov. 19, 2002

Mondo Bond by Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, Nov. 4, 2002
Forty years of 007.

Networking by Amanda Fisher, Comics & Games Retailer, November 2002
Small stores benefit from interaction with others

Not So Funny by Natalie Pompilio, American Journalism Review, October 2002
Several major newspapers are leaving their editorial cartoonist positions vacant. Are these civic needlers an endangered species?

Police Beat Redux, Glass Eyes by the Bottle, and a Convention Stunned to Silence by Peter Spectre, Maine Boats & Harbors, Winter 2003

Revolution at the Reference Desk by Chris Dodge, Utne, November/December 2002
A new generation of librarians see information as a social cause

Running on Empty by Richard Byrne, The Boston Phoenix, Nov. 15, 2002
Serbian rock music helped bring down Slobodan Milosevic. But postwar Serbia is a tough place to make a living as a musician -- or as anything else, for that matter. Can the country rebuild its shattered economy and keep its culture?

Still Shining Independently by Bruce Costa, Comics & Games Retailer, October 2002
A continued discussion with Eric Reynolds of Fantagraphics

Swedish Hot Nights by John Harris, Rolling Stone, Nov. 14, 2002
The women are beautiful and the government pays you to be in a band. Welcome to punk paradise.

This Is a Headline for an Essay About Meta by Laura Miller, The New York Times Magazine, Nov. 17, 2002
Why jokey self-consciousness permeats novels, films, TV -- and our speech.

What's So Funny? by Tad Friend, The New Yorker, Nov. 11, 2002
A scientific attempt to discover why we laugh.

Why Movies Are So Bad by Kim Masters, Esquire, December 2002
The story of the fall of one pushy studio executive is an object lesson in why Saturday nights are getting more boring

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