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1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon May 21, 2018 4:24 pm UTC
by Soupspoon
Image

Title Text: "Support your local paper, unless it's just been bought by some sinister hedge fund or something, which it probably has."

I support my local paper by making sure I don't just immediately bin it, along with all the other unsolicited paper that gets popped through my letterbox. Really not sure what else I can do apart from phoning up each and every advertiser that is mentioned in it and making it worth their while. (As studiously as I don't use any of the pizza places that try to circumvent the paper's business model by posting their own A5 flyers through my door by their own efforts. Wait, that's probably providing temporary employment to people… Darn, the System is hard to do good things by!)

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon May 21, 2018 4:36 pm UTC
by wumpus
Anyone assuming the trustworthiness of newspapers in the paper age should look up the shenanigans of H.L. Mencken and William Randalf Hurst.

Mencken described in detail the invention of news at the local level: hearing rumors in a bar, making up the details, and for the important part: sharing it with is alleged "rivals" for confirmation in other newspapers. When people heard multiple "independent" voices saying the same thing, they believed it (including the editors who were Mecken's bosses). Hurst did the same on the macro scale, simply owning sufficient newspapers to fake the multiple "independent" voices. And don't get started on "you provide the pictures and I'll provide the war".

You can ask yourself just how few independent voices there are in traditional media, and how easy it is to fake multiple independent voices in more modern "social" media. But they aren't really new tricks... And if you think "fake news as entertainment" is a new thing, you need to google "60 minutes". Fake news as entertainment beat Monday Night Football in the 1970s and 1980s (and that was probably MNF's highest point as well).

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon May 21, 2018 4:47 pm UTC
by sonar1313
wumpus wrote:Anyone assuming the trustworthiness of newspapers in the paper age should look up the shenanigans of H.L. Mencken and William Randalf Hurst.

Mencken described in detail the invention of news at the local level: hearing rumors in a bar, making up the details, and for the important part: sharing it with is alleged "rivals" for confirmation in other newspapers. When people heard multiple "independent" voices saying the same thing, they believed it (including the editors who were Mecken's bosses). Hurst did the same on the macro scale, simply owning sufficient newspapers to fake the multiple "independent" voices. And don't get started on "you provide the pictures and I'll provide the war".

You can ask yourself just how few independent voices there are in traditional media, and how easy it is to fake multiple independent voices in more modern "social" media. But they aren't really new tricks... And if you think "fake news as entertainment" is a new thing, you need to google "60 minutes". Fake news as entertainment beat Monday Night Football in the 1970s and 1980s (and that was probably MNF's highest point as well).


Yeah, but at least their news didn't consist of Twitter reactions.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon May 21, 2018 4:58 pm UTC
by pkcommando
Twitter reactions in the story versus a couple pages of Letters to the Editor, usually written by the same group of busybodies and nutjobs. Not seeing the worseness.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon May 21, 2018 5:58 pm UTC
by Reka
pkcommando wrote:Twitter reactions in the story versus a couple pages of Letters to the Editor, usually written by the same group of busybodies and nutjobs. Not seeing the worseness.

It was very easy to just not read the letters to the editor. Or the front page. Or the newspaper at all, really, apart from the funnies. Now we get (fake) news bombarded at us left and right.

On a slightly different note, I was trying to read some articles about that little wedding in England on Saturday, and was floored by how absolutely horrible the writing was, basic grammar-wise, on even supposedly reputable sites like the BBC and People. Like not knowing the difference between "sprig" and "spring" level of horrible.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon May 21, 2018 9:54 pm UTC
by orthogon
pkcommando wrote:Twitter reactions in the story versus a couple pages of Letters to the Editor, usually written by the same group of busybodies and nutjobs. Not seeing the worseness.

Sir: I respectfully disagree with your correspondent pkcommando. Letters to the Editor are hand-picked from thousands of candidates: to stand a chance of being published, a letter has to have a strong and interesting point, and to make it with concision and clarity. Poor grammar and spelling are grounds for immediate rejection. Twitter, it ain't.

orthogon, London, UK.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon May 21, 2018 10:51 pm UTC
by Soupspoon
orthogon wrote:
pkcommando wrote:Twitter reactions in the story versus a couple pages of Letters to the Editor, usually written by the same group of busybodies and nutjobs. Not seeing the worseness.

Sir: I respectfully disagree with your correspondent pkcommando. Letters to the Editor are hand-picked from thousands of candidates: to stand a chance of being published, a letter has to have a strong and interesting point, and to make it with concision and clarity. Poor grammar and spelling are grounds for immediate rejection. Twitter, it ain't.

orthogon, London, UK.


Sir: I read with amazement the argument posited by one 'orthogon' (Letters to the Editor, 21/May) arguing that published letters are selected mostly from amongst the grammatically and lexicographically correct and that this made the medium unlike Twitter.

Not only must orthogon concede that they themselves are seemingly lacking the will to capitalise their nominative handle, but entirely correct keyboardpersonship is very much the trademark quality of the more obsessive of the various specie within the busybody and nutjob clade.

Add to that the seemingly joyful glee of editors to select correspondence that will provoke response, the mediated promotion of troll-worthy comments in line with or against the editorial agenda can be even more effective on a per-item basis, just to promote the primest of examples.

Name and address supplied.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon May 21, 2018 11:58 pm UTC
by Old Bruce
Soupspoon wrote:
orthogon wrote:
pkcommando wrote:Twitter reactions in the story versus a couple pages of Letters to the Editor, usually written by the same group of busybodies and nutjobs. Not seeing the worseness.

Sir: I respectfully disagree with your correspondent pkcommando. Letters to the Editor are hand-picked from thousands of candidates: to stand a chance of being published, a letter has to have a strong and interesting point, and to make it with concision and clarity. Poor grammar and spelling are grounds for immediate rejection. Twitter, it ain't.

orthogon, London, UK.


Sir: I read with amazement the argument posited by one 'orthogon' (Letters to the Editor, 21/May) arguing that published letters are selected mostly from amongst the grammatically and lexicographically correct and that this made the medium unlike Twitter.

Not only must orthogon concede that they themselves are seemingly lacking the will to capitalise their nominative handle, but entirely correct keyboardpersonship is very much the trademark quality of the more obsessive of the various specie within the busybody and nutjob clade.

Add to that the seemingly joyful glee of editors to select correspondence that will provoke response, the mediated promotion of troll-worthy comments in line with or against the editorial agenda can be even more effective on a per-item basis, just to promote the primest of examples.

Name and address supplied.

Sir,
A letter to the editor as a means of promulgating opinion/fact has been ill served by advancements in technology. I present the short lived experiment run by a BBC television program which presented viewers's commentary as it was being written. While a worthy experiment it was not without unforeseen danger. Sadly a man fell to his death in the midst of writing about the implausibility of the previous item broadcast. Perhaps the Pokemon genration of quasi social media methods will also go the way of the MPFCP.
sincerely,
(The (Soon Enough) Late) Old Bruce

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 2:39 am UTC
by Mikeski
Newspapers!? The "news" in those could be hours old. Almost a day old, even!

This is 2018. (If you're reading this then. If not, "hi, person from the future!"). If it's more than 5 minutes old, it's not "news" anymore. It's "history".

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 2:41 am UTC
by qvxb
Newspapers, bah! All you need is Rush, Sean, and Fox News.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 4:26 am UTC
by ucim
You don't even need them. You know what they're going to say. The one you don't know is the man with the small hands and orange hair. In order to predict that one, you need to figure out what the absolute stupidest, most damaging thing that could possibly be tweeted is, and then top it, and contradict it later. So, I guess you do need a twitter account.

Or a fallout shelter.

Jose

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 9:02 am UTC
by orthogon
Sir,

If ee cummings can do it, so can I (letter, 21st May).

orthogon, London.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 11:31 am UTC
by rmsgrey
Mikeski wrote:Newspapers!? The "news" in those could be hours old. Almost a day old, even!

This is 2018. (If you're reading this then. If not, "hi, person from the future!"). If it's more than 5 minutes old, it's not "news" anymore. It's "history".


If it's a daily newspaper, then it will routinely include news of events that were more than a day old at the moment the newspaper hit news-stands. Sufficiently major events may delay the printing/distribution of an issue, but most of the time, something that just misses the deadline for inclusion in a given issue will have to either go entirely unreported, or wait for the next day's issue.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 2:07 pm UTC
by sonar1313
Mikeski wrote:Newspapers!? The "news" in those could be hours old. Almost a day old, even!

This is 2018. (If you're reading this then. If not, "hi, person from the future!"). If it's more than 5 minutes old, it's not "news" anymore. It's "history".


To me there's a certain standard that one holds oneself to if what you're writing is going into print to be preserved more or less for all time, or at least in such a way as can't be edited later. Is the news totally up-to-date? No. Is that fine? Yup. The rush to be first creates errors, misconceptions, rumors, innuendo, and various other misinformation.

Newspapers are certainly not immune to all this either, and have a nasty habit of PUTTING ERRORS IN HUGE PRINT AT FIRST while later on wedging a correction in a tiny corner of the page. But it's still preferable to "Donald Trump said something on Twitter and THIS celebrity had the PERFECT REACTION!"

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 2:43 pm UTC
by Archgeek
Old Bruce wrote:
Soupspoon wrote:
orthogon wrote:
pkcommando wrote:Twitter reactions in the story versus a couple pages of Letters to the Editor, usually written by the same group of busybodies and nutjobs. Not seeing the worseness.

Sir: I respectfully disagree with your correspondent pkcommando. Letters to the Editor are hand-picked from thousands of candidates: to stand a chance of being published, a letter has to have a strong and interesting point, and to make it with concision and clarity. Poor grammar and spelling are grounds for immediate rejection. Twitter, it ain't.

orthogon, London, UK.


Sir: I read with amazement the argument posited by one 'orthogon' (Letters to the Editor, 21/May) arguing that published letters are selected mostly from amongst the grammatically and lexicographically correct and that this made the medium unlike Twitter.

Not only must orthogon concede that they themselves are seemingly lacking the will to capitalise their nominative handle, but entirely correct keyboardpersonship is very much the trademark quality of the more obsessive of the various specie within the busybody and nutjob clade.

Add to that the seemingly joyful glee of editors to select correspondence that will provoke response, the mediated promotion of troll-worthy comments in line with or against the editorial agenda can be even more effective on a per-item basis, just to promote the primest of examples.

Name and address supplied.

Sir,
A letter to the editor as a means of promulgating opinion/fact has been ill served by advancements in technology. I present the short lived experiment run by a BBC television program which presented viewers's commentary as it was being written. While a worthy experiment it was not without unforeseen danger. Sadly a man fell to his death in the midst of writing about the implausibility of the previous item broadcast. Perhaps the Pokemon genration of quasi social media methods will also go the way of the MPFCP.
sincerely,
(The (Soon Enough) Late) Old Bruce

Sir: I would like to posit that the persons submitting the previous four Letters to the Editor are collectively a roiling swarm of dorks, and should be publicly commended for the above shenanigans.

Moreover, I submit that were modern technological correspondence characterized by a similar form as the above, the shape of the discourse would incite a statistically significant amount more amusement.

Archgeek, OKC, US.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 5:14 pm UTC
by gmalivuk
The first Boston Globe had a "current notes" section that was essentially Twitter.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 8:04 pm UTC
by rmsgrey
sonar1313 wrote:To me there's a certain standard that one holds oneself to if what you're writing is going into print to be preserved more or less for all time, or at least in such a way as can't be edited later. Is the news totally up-to-date? No. Is that fine? Yup. The rush to be first creates errors, misconceptions, rumors, innuendo, and various other misinformation.


I'm not convinced that tomorrow's chip wrappers qualify as "preserved more or less for all time".

But, yeah, the inability to edit later, and the fact the timing of the story's release is fixed no matter how much you rush/take your time over it, both encourage accuracy of both facts and writing.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 9:52 pm UTC
by Archgeek
rmsgrey wrote:
sonar1313 wrote:To me there's a certain standard that one holds oneself to if what you're writing is going into print to be preserved more or less for all time, or at least in such a way as can't be edited later. Is the news totally up-to-date? No. Is that fine? Yup. The rush to be first creates errors, misconceptions, rumors, innuendo, and various other misinformation.


I'm not convinced that tomorrow's chip wrappers qualify as "preserved more or less for all time".

But, yeah, the inability to edit later, and the fact the timing of the story's release is fixed no matter how much you rush/take your time over it, both encourage accuracy of both facts and writing.

'Ever visited a major library's microfiche zone? They oft' have tape of nearly every issue of every major national or otherwise historically relevant newspaper that has been, and key articles liable to be of research interest even get referenced in the library's digital catalogue -- such that a kid doing research can find 'emself directed to newspaper articles in the microfiche archives.

Most copies may find themselves re-purposed for chip wrappers or packing matériel, but I'd not be surprised if at least one of every issue gets imaged for posteriority.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Tue May 22, 2018 11:45 pm UTC
by Old Bruce
Archgeek wrote:
Old Bruce wrote:
Soupspoon wrote:
orthogon wrote:
pkcommando wrote:Twitter reactions in the story versus a couple pages of Letters to the Editor, usually written by the same group of busybodies and nutjobs. Not seeing the worseness.

Sir: I respectfully disagree with your correspondent pkcommando. Letters to the Editor are hand-picked from thousands of candidates: to stand a chance of being published, a letter has to have a strong and interesting point, and to make it with concision and clarity. Poor grammar and spelling are grounds for immediate rejection. Twitter, it ain't.

orthogon, London, UK.


Sir: I read with amazement the argument posited by one 'orthogon' (Letters to the Editor, 21/May) arguing that published letters are selected mostly from amongst the grammatically and lexicographically correct and that this made the medium unlike Twitter.

Not only must orthogon concede that they themselves are seemingly lacking the will to capitalise their nominative handle, but entirely correct keyboardpersonship is very much the trademark quality of the more obsessive of the various specie within the busybody and nutjob clade.

Add to that the seemingly joyful glee of editors to select correspondence that will provoke response, the mediated promotion of troll-worthy comments in line with or against the editorial agenda can be even more effective on a per-item basis, just to promote the primest of examples.

Name and address supplied.

Sir,
A letter to the editor as a means of promulgating opinion/fact has been ill served by advancements in technology. I present the short lived experiment run by a BBC television program which presented viewers's commentary as it was being written. While a worthy experiment it was not without unforeseen danger. Sadly a man fell to his death in the midst of writing about the implausibility of the previous item broadcast. Perhaps the Pokemon genration of quasi social media methods will also go the way of the MPFCP.
sincerely,
(The (Soon Enough) Late) Old Bruce

Sir: I would like to posit that the persons submitting the previous four Letters to the Editor are collectively a roiling swarm of dorks, and should be publicly commended for the above shenanigans.

Moreover, I submit that were modern technological correspondence characterized by a similar form as the above, the shape of the discourse would incite a statistically significant amount more amusement.

Archgeek, OKC, US.

Sir,
As flattering as it is to be included in the roiling swarm I have, since achieving slightly more than a mere modicum of maturity, styled myself as more of a dweeb than a dork. Granted this may well be a distinction sans difference but it would be remiss of me to not correct the collective noun. To wit an anorak of dweebs. Naturally I expect a correction only if at least an additional 25% of my fellow loyal correspondents who were, unintentionally I am sure, incorrectly identified as geeks by Archgeek, agree with my assessment of the situation vis a vis the (mis)appellation of dork to ourselves.
I feel I must stress my belief in no malice having been intended by Archgeek, or your own good self in the perhaps too hasty labeling.
Sincerely
Your loyal reader and subscriber
Old Bruce

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Thu May 24, 2018 6:05 am UTC
by Znirk
Reka wrote:It was very easy to just not read the letters to the editor. Or the front page. Or the newspaper at all, really, apart from the funnies. Now we get (fake) news bombarded at us left and right.

What's different though? There are a lot of news sources around, but they're still pretty easy to ignore if you don't want any news at all. It's only when you need to distinguish journalism from bullshit that the effort becomes greater, then as now.

Me, I still wait until I get to the kitchen to get my morning news. There I switch on a machine that makes someone far away read them to me.

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Posted: Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:11 am UTC
by wumpus
sonar1313 wrote:Yeah, but at least their news didn't consist of Twitter reactions.


I'm not sure when it happened, but by the 1990s it was considered improper to report actual facts. You had to present both "sides" (even for things like flat Earth vs. oblate spheroid) and do so largely via quotes. Using Twitter is merely the logical conclusion to this, no more tracking down people to pry the right quote out o them (as a side effect, short of deleted twitters, it is much harder to fake).

[I suppose a few of them share a shill twitter account to provide just the right quote that isn't easy to track back to anyone specifically].