Category Archives: Media

The web is no longer a place we visit. It’s how we live.

Before the web, there was Prodigy. And no, it wasn't much good.

Before the web, there was Prodigy. And no, it wasn’t much good.

The web—or, as we used to call it, the World Wide Web—is 25 years old this month. On August 6, 1991, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, who had outlined his idea for the web two years earlier, published the first website. It was, as the Telegraph put it, “a basic text page with hyperlinked words that connected to other pages.”

Those of us who were there at the beginning understood that this was a big deal. Even so, the revolution it launched could not have been imagined. As Virginia Heffernan put it in her recent book Magic and Loss: The Internet as Art, “The Internet is the great masterpiece of human civilization.” And the web provides the road map that makes the internet navigable.

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WGBH’s Callie Crossley wins commentary award from NABJ


Callie Crossley. Photo via WGBH News.

There she goes again. My friend and WGBH colleague Callie Crossley won top honors for her radio commentaries at the recent National Association of Black Journalists conference in Washington. The press release follows.

BOSTON—WGBH News award-winning journalist Callie Crossley was recognized with top honors in the Commentary category at the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) Conference, held August 3-7 in Washington Crossley, host of WGBH News’ Under the Radar, won first place for Top 15 Markets for her three-part compilation of commentaries “Race Matters: Echoing History,” which explores current racial issues in the United States through the lens of the country’s civil rights history.

“We are proud of Callie and have long believed that her observations are the best offered by local radio,” said Phil Redo, WGBH General Manager for Radio. “Callie’s examination of race and media coverage has come at a critical moment in the current political climate, and her unwavering commitment to telling the stories that are often overlooked is what makes her so original and so compelling.”

A former producer for ABC News’ 20/20, Crossley is also a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow through the Council of Independent Colleges, guest-lecturing at colleges and universities about media, politics and the intersection of race, gender and media. She also holds two fellowships at Harvard University. Crossley was a producer for Blackside Inc.’s Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Years, which earned her an Oscar nomination, a National Emmy Award and the Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia Award. Crossley has earned the Associated Press, Edward R. Murrow and Clarion Awards for writing, producing and hosting.

In addition to hosting Under the Radar, which features stories not usually covered by traditional media outlets, Crossley appears weekly on WGBH’s Beat the Press, examining local and national media coverage, and Basic Black, focusing on current events concerning communities of color. She also contributes to national programs including CNN’s Reliable Sources, PBS’s NewsHour and PRI’sThe Takeaway.

Under the Radar airs Sundays from 6 to 7 p.m. EDT on 89.7 WGBH. Crossley’s weekly commentaries air Mondays during WGBH’s Morning Edition.

Race Matters: Echoing History

Cartoon in Globe about police shootings sparks controversy

Mike Luckovich's cartoon as it appeared in Monday's Boston Globe. Photo by WGBH News.

Mike Luckovich’s cartoon as it appeared in Monday’s Boston Globe. Photo by WGBH News.

Update: The Globe has published a collection of letters in opposition to the cartoon.

Officials with the Boston Police Department are upset over a tough cartoon about police shootings of black men that appeared on the opinion pages of Monday’s Boston Globe. But the Globe’s editorial-page editor is standing by it. And the president of the local NAACP defends the cartoon as a satirical comment on a tragic reality.

The cartoon, by Mike Luckovich of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, a Pulitzer Prize winner whose work is nationally syndicated, depicts a white police officer. In one frame, labeled “For White People,” he is seen holding a piece of paper that says “Miranda Rights.” In the other, “For Black People,” a piece of paper says “Last Rites.”

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What John Oliver gets wrong in his newspaper rant

Yes, I would read a story about a cat that looks like a raccoon or, for that matter, a raccoon that looks like a cat. When I scroll through a digital newspaper, though, I’m looking for something else: journalism I need to be a well-informed citizen—and, OK, the occasional cat that looks like a raccoon.

By now you may have at least heard about a 19-minute rant by John Oliver on his HBO program Last Week Tonight in which he reminds us of newspapers’ central role in our democracy and laments their demise.

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GateHouse Media New England announces buyouts

Who needs journalists?

Brian McGrory updates staff on Globe restructuring

I’m on the road without my laptop. But my friends at WGBH News have posted a memo I received from a source earlier today in which Boston Globe editor Brian McGrory updated the staff on issues involving downsizing, possible layoffs, and a massive reinvention effort.

The challenge Trump poses to the established media system

maxresdefaultMy first inclination today was to write something about this being a moment that we might look back on as the beginning of the end for the Trump campaign.

Certainly there are plenty of reasons to think that might be the case. From Trump’s mind-bogglingly offensive attack on the Khan family to a powerful pushback from John McCain and other Republicans, from his bizarre comments about Ukraine and Crimea (and the NFL!) to his plummeting poll numbers, this has quite possibly been his worst week.

But rather than belabor the obvious, I’d like to examine the proper role of the news media in covering a campaign like this, which is utterly unique in the post-World War II era—possibly even in the post-Civil War era. Let me start by laying out what I hope the vast majority of you will regard as self-evident truths about the two major-party candidates.

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