Views of the News

Media criticism and critique from Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean.

Aero Icarus/Flickr

What happened to Malaysia Airlines flight 370?  All we know for sure is that it left Kuala Lampur on Friday, March 8 and never made it to its destination, the Beijing Capital International airport.  It's a mystery leaving millions around the globe scratching their heads.  The American media is reporting every small detail -- many of them theories and rumors. 

Media criticism and critique from Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons and Earnest Perry, with special guest panelist Lee Wilkins.

FunnyOrDie.com

President Barack Obama appeared on Between Two Ferns, an Internet program hosted by comedian Zach Galifianakis on funnyordie.com.  The two exchanged barbs before getting into a discussion about registering the March 31, 2014 deadline for registering for insurance through the Affordable Care Act.

  Media criticism and critique from Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean.

via Twitter

At nearly three and a half hours, this year's Academy Awards telecast didn't set any records for length.  But, it did set a social media milestone, when more than 3,000,000 Twitter users retweeted this selfie featuring host Ellen DeGeneres and several other Hollywood stars.

David Bauder, AP: “Ellen’s Oscar celeb selfie a landmark media moment

  Media criticism and critique from Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean.

bruce britt
Columbia Fire Department

Lt. Bruce Britt is only the second member of the Columbia Fire Department to die in the line of duty.  Britt succumbed to injuries sustained early Saturday morning while responding to a structural collapse at University Village apartments.  The complex is run my MU's Department of Residential Life.

And, as a community prepares to say goodbye, the university is trying to determine what caused a concrete walkway to collapse -- and is working to prevent another incident.    

Media criticism and critique from Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean.

Rickelle Pimentel / KBIA

Hundreds of Michael Sam supporters lined Stadium Blvd. and Providence Road in Columbia on Saturday, Feb. 15, blocking out a protest by the Westboro Baptist Church.

Sam, a former MU football player and NFL prospect, made international headlines last week when he came out as gay.

Members of the Topeka, Kan.-based church said they would return to Columbia to protest Sam's coming out and the MU community's support of him.  They were last here protesting the funeral of Army Spc. Sterling Wyatt in July 2012.

michael sam
Karen Mitchell / KBIA

Former MU defensive lineman Michael Sam told his teammates he was gay during a team building exercise late last summer.  On Sunday, he told the rest of the world, with the help of the New York Times and ESPN. 

John Branch, New York Times: “NFL prospect Michael Sam proudly says what teammates knew: He’s gay

Colin Swan via Flickr

Sunday, the New York Times published an open letter written by Dylan Farrow, the daughter of actress Mia Farrow.  In it, Dylan offers a detailed account of sexual abuse she says she endured at the hands of her stepfather -- legendary actor, director and producer Woody Allen.

These allegations first came to light more than 20 years ago.  Since then Allen has ended his longtime relationship with Mia Farrow and married Farrow's adopted daughter, Soon-Yi.  That relationship began when Soon-Yi was in her late teens.

  

Media criticism and critique from Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Mike McKean and Jim Flink.

Wikimedia Commons / wikimedia commons

School safety is an important issue. How we cover it is important, too.  Last week, a suburban St. Louis high school was put on lockdown after a reporter from KSDK-TV entered the building unannounced.  He entered through an unlocked door, asked for directions to the school office and asked to speak with a security officer.  When one wasn't available, he left his name and phone number and walked out.  An hour later, the school was put on lockdown -- and the community went into a panic.

via Twitter

That's the question Emma G. Keller asked in a blog post published on The Guardian's website last week.  The piece centered on Lisa Adams, a woman with stage four breast cancer who is blogging and tweeting about her fight -- sometimes dozens of time per hour. 

A few days later, Keller's husband, Bill Keller wrote a column in the New York Times comparing Adams' decision to aggressively fight her disease to his father-in-law's more palliative treatment plan.

Massoud Hossaini / AP Images

We're already seeing a rise in air temperatures after this week's deep freeze.  How well did the local and national media cover the weather event? 

Stu Ostro, Jon Erdman, Nick Wiltgen, The Weather Channel: "Deep Freeze: Was the polar vortex really the cause"

Jordan Herr, KOMU: "Bitter cold brings danger of frostbite"

The past week has been a busy one for stories about national security and how the media have handled those stories.  A judge rules the National Security Agency's phone records collection program is probably unconstitutional.  Meanwhile, the plaintiff in that lawsuit gets into an on-air battle with a CNN anchor and analyst.  60 Minutes airs what many critics consider a puff piece on the NSA.  The AP and Washington Post publish a story connecting a missing American to a rogue CIA program in Iran.  And American leaker Edward Snowden gets the nod from many for "person of the year."

newsy on kindle fire
Newsy

E.W. Scripps announced Tuesday it has acquiring Columbia-based Newsy for $35 million.  Newsy is best known for its short online videos that aggregate news from multiple sources.  The five-year-old company has 35 full-time employees.  It has had a relationship with the Reynolds Journalism Institute and the MU School of Journalism since relocating to Columbia in 2008.

James Duncan Davidson/Flickr

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos appeared on CBS' 60 Minutes Sunday night.  At the end of the 14-minute segment reported by Charlie Rose, Bezos unveiled a drone he calls an octocopter.  Bezos says he hopes the unmanned aircraft will one day make deliveries in 30 minutes or less. 

Charlie Rose, CBS News: “Amazon’s Jeff Bezos looks to the future

@moon_melanie / twitter

Members of the local, state and national media found themselves embroiled in debate this week about the impartiality of journalists covering Ryan Ferguson's release from prison. 

August Kryger / Columbia Tribune

An appeals court has vacated Ryan Ferguson's conviction in the murder of Columbia Daily Tribune sports editor Kent Heitholt.  How has the local and national media kept this story front and center for nearly a decade?

Marisa Guthrie, The Hollywood Reporter: “How ’48 Hours’ helped overturn Missouri man’s conviction

Bill Greenblatt / UPI

It's World Series time again, and few are prouder to see the Cardinals back in the fall classic than St. Louisans (and those of us here in mid-Missouri).  But, the national press hasn't been to friendly -- to the Red Birds or their fans.

Jonathan Mahler, Bloomberg: “The most insufferable fans in sports live in St. Louis

trekkyandy/FLICKR

It won't be too long of a wait for Wall Street traders who want a piece of Twitter.  Last week the social media company filed the final paperwork to for an initial public offering.  Among the details discovered in those applications -- the board of directors, key investors and company executives are almost entirely white males.  That's got many in the media world asking where are the women?

NBC News

What is the reporter's role?

NBC's Chuck Todd is under fire for comments he made on the program "Morning Joe."  Todd and former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell (D) were discussing the root of some commonly-held misconceptions of about the Affordable Care Act.  Rendell argued the public has been fed erroneous information about the law.  Todd said "Republicans have effectively messaged against it," but disagreed with those who said it is up to the media to educate the public about the law.

New York Times hacked
via nytimes.com

ESPN Pulls from NFL Concussion Investigation

  

Media criticism and critique from Missouri School of Journalism professors Mike McKean, Esther Thorson and Stephanie Padgett.

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