Journalism’s infatuation with Glenn Greenwald

BY WILLIAM H. FREIVOGEL / The journalism world’s embrace of Glenn Greenwald and his advocacy reporting is now complete with the award of the Pulitzer Prize to the Guardian for Greenwald’s disclosure of Edward Snowden’s NSA secrets. As with many youthful infatuations, the journalism world has rushed headlong into this relationship without listening to the alarms that surely went off in the heads of veteran journalists.

Election night viewing, GJR-style

True confession: Gateway Journalism Review’s staff is made up of political junkies with long traditions of monitoring election-evening results. Our own political media monitoring likely mirrors that of much of the American population. So, at the risk of being too introspective, here is how GJR staffers spent Tuesday evening.

AP headline misleads readers about threat to Kansas power plant

While reading news from my home state of Kansas Tuesday morning (Aug. 28), a headline caught my eye on the Topeka Capital-Journal Web site: Drought raises concern at Wolf Creek nuclear plant: Cooling waters at John Redmond reservoir are dwindling. The article, which had been posted just an hour prior, was a five-paragraph AP story about concerns over the low water levels and the impact on the nuclear power plant.

Analysis: Blagojevich’s conviction fits pattern of white-collar retrials

The conviction of former Ill. Gov. Rod Blagojevich on 17 federal criminal counts on Monday is not surprising in light of the high percentage of convictions that federal prosecutors win in retrials of white-collar crimes after they have a chance to streamline complicated cases to appeal to juries.

A jury found Blagojevich guilty of 17 counts of wire fraud, attempted extortion, bribery, extortion conspiracy and bribery conspiracy. He was acquitted on one bribery charge, and the jury deadlocked on two counts of attempted extortion.

Supreme Court makes First Amendment ruling

Venturing into a new frontier of First Amendment law, the Supreme Court gave constitutional protection to those seeking to use the vast stores of data and information collected by modern information technology. The court ruled 6-3 that Vermont could not stop pharmaceutical companies from obtaining data on doctors’ prescription-writing practices – data the companies used…

Alito talks media with lawyers in St. Louis

Justice Samuel Alito didn’t direct his remarks at the press when he spoke to a ballroom full of lawyers in St. Louis. But it was clearly the press he had in mind when he described the misconceptions that people have about the Supreme Court.

Alito even singled out for criticism the star Supreme Court reporter of the past generation, Linda Greenhouse, who writes a column about the court in her retirement from the New York Times. He noted that Greenhouse had wondered in her column about “topsy-turvy world” Supreme Court where business had not won as high a percentage of cases this term as in the past.

“Maybe the law has something to do with it,” said Alito with some sarcasm. “Maybe the text has something to do with it. I know that is a radical thought.”

Liberty Tree seminar: Media accountability in the digital age?

The School of Journalism at Southern Illinois University Carbondale hosted a seminar on April 12 to focus on journalism ethics and First Amendment issues, funded by a grant from Liberty Tree. In two panels, journalists, lawyers and professors talked to students and each other about whether the traditional tools of media accountability are up to the new challenges of the digital media age. GJR is happy to present video of both sessions.