Fake News Resources from ALA

The American Library Association has rounded up some resources on one of the hot topics of our day: fake news. In all kinds of libraries–school, public, academic–librarians are offering their constituents strategies for discerning fact from fiction in their daily news consumption.  Fake News: A Library Resource Round-Up  offers up some webinars, LibGuides, books, and articles devoted to the issue of fake news.  Included in the suggested books is a title from one of our own,  Unspun: Finding Facts in a World of Disinformation by Kathleen Hall Jamieson and Brooks Jackson.

For some deeper reading on the subject check out: Post-truth: Study Epidemiology of Fake News by Adam Jurcharski in Nature 540,525

Also,  keep and eye on the London School’s Media Policy Project Blog that is devoting a series of posts on fake news, the first one is here.


Historical Coverage of Contraception in the Media

An historical look at birth control and the media is the theme of  Journalism & Communication Monographs’ last issue of 2016 (Volume 18, Number 4). The issue’s monograph by Ana C. Garner and Angela R. Michel is titled: “The Birth Control Divide”: U.S. Press Coverage of Contraception, 1873-2013, followed by two commentary pieces: Situating Contraception in a Broader Historical Formation (Carole R. McCann) and  140 Years of Birth Control Coverage in the Prestige Press (Dolores Flamiano).

Abstract  (Garner/Michel analysis)

For more than 140 years, religious, medical, legislative, and legal institutions have contested the issue of contraception. In this conversation, predominantly male voices have attached reproductive rights to tangential moral and political matters, revealing an ongoing, systematic attempt to regulate human bodies, especially those of women. This analysis of 1873-2013 press coverage of contraception in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the Chicago Tribune shows a division between institutional ideology and real-life experience; women’s reproductive rights are negotiable. Although journalists often reported that contraception was a factor in the everyday life of women and men, press accounts also showed religious, medical, legislative, and legal institutions debating whether it should be. Contraception originally was predominately viewed as a practice of prostitutes (despite evidence to the contrary) but became a part of everyday life. The battle has slowly evolved into one about the Affordable Care Act, religious freedom, morality, and employer rights. What did not significantly change over the 140-year period are larger cultural and ideological structures; these continue to be dominated by men, who retain power over women’s bodies.

Local News Ecosystems in Three New Jersey Communities

njnewsA new report, Assessing the Health of Local Journalism Ecosystems: A Comparative Analysis of Three New Jersey Communities, prepared for the Democracy Fund, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, analyzes one week of online journalism output across three communities–Newark, New Brunswick, and Morristown. The researchers, Philip M. Napoli, Sarah Stonbely, Kathleen McCollough, and Bryce Renninger looked at both the home page content and social media (Facebook and Twitter) postings for all television, radio, print, and online journalism sources that could be located within these communities. Their findings “potentially point to a problem in local journalism, in which lower-income communities may be underserved relative to wealthier communities. The researchers intend to address this issue further by applying the methodology and performance metrics developed for this project to a larger sample of communities, an effort to better understand the factors related to the health of local journalism.”


Introducing Black Quotidian

AmsterdamnewsAn exciting new digital history project, Black Quotidian: Everyday History in African-American Newspapers,” is being launched by Matt Delmont. Made possible by Proquest’s Black Newspapers collection, Delmont plans to post at least one newspaper article daily from that date in history with a brief accompanying commentary.  The project commences on Martin Luther King Day 2016, and the entry for that is already posted (as of 1/4/2016).  The post includes four articles published on January 18, 1969 from the Philadelphia Tribune, the Pittsburgh Courier, and the New York Amsterdam News. Explains the curator, Black Quotidian “is designed to highlight everyday moments and lives in African-American history…By emphasizing the ordinary or mundane aspects of history I hope both to call attention to people and events that are not commonly featured in textbooks, documentaries, or Black History Month celebrations, while also casting new light on well-known black history subjects.” His hope is to not be the only curator of the site and invites others to contribute.  No stranger to creating culturally rich websites, there’s  The Nicest Kids in Town digital project, that accompanies his book on American Bandstand and  Why Busing Failed  built to accompany his book of the same title (Why Busing Failed: Race, Media, and the National Resistance to School Desegregation).

In the Life Archive at UCLA

Over the summer The UCLA Film and Television Archive launched a new digital portal of LGBT media materials in concert with the trailblazing TV series In the Life. In addition to a complete collection of In the Life episodes (actually all of the over 190 episodes aren’t up yet), the portal features “other contextualizing material, including a commissioned essay, “The Time of Our Lives: In the Life – America’s LGBT News Magazineinthelifepapers1,” by Stephen Tropiano, Ithaca College; an oral history with seminal indie filmmaker Pat Rocco; a lecture by LGBT scholar  Lillian Faderman; and a list of LGBT media, history and advocacy resources…Jayne Baron Sherman, a board member of In the Life Media, said, ‘This living legacy of ‘In the Life’ provides generations with documentation and history that exists nowhere else and helps chronicle and explain the LGBT movement over the past 20-plus years.'” –UCLA Newsroom

In the Life ran from 1992-2012 and for most of those years followed a news magazine format that provided award-winning journalism for and about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.  Eventually it aired in over 200 public TV markets.


Associated Press and British Movietone Newsreels Come to YouTube

Tmovietonewo world famous newsreel archives, The Associated Press and British Movietone, have just announced they are making their footage available on YouTube, making it “the largest upload of historical news content on the video-sharing platform to date,” more than 550,000 video stories dating from 1895 to the present day, according to the July 22 press release.

Stephen Nuttall, director of YouTube in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, observed: “Making this content available on YouTube is a wonderful initiative from AP and British Movietone that will breathe new life into their footage and no doubt delight our global community–from students researching history projects to curious culture-vultures and the billions in between. It’s an historical treasure trove that will give YouTube users around the world a moving window into the past and I can’t wait to explore it.”

imagesX4U92P2FThe AP portion of these archives is not finite either; it will be continually refreshed with contemporary footage.

Once in YouTube, you can browse the The AP Archive and British Movietone separately or do event or topic searches with the general YouTube content and see what newsreels come up.





A Syllabus for the Ages

carrAnyone interested in journalism or writing in general might want to put themselves through the paces of the course David Carr taught last semester, his first after joining the faculty at Boston University’s communications school. The course, called Press Play, is devoted to “making and distributing content” in today’s shifting media landscape.  It is what Davide Carr is all about, great journalism, yes, but above all, finding one’s voice as writer.  Latter sessions in the semester deal with distribution models, measuring reader engagement and “writing” for visual learners, i.e. video.

The syllabus for Press Play  can be found on his blog Medium which is sadly now frozen since his last post on February 4.

Newspaper Map

mapThere’s a new way to read electronic facsimiles of current newspapers from around the world other than through Library PressDisplay (NewspaperDirect), a Penn Libraries e-resource.  If the paper you are looking for is not in the PressDisplay, try Newspaper Map which purportedly displays over 10,000 newspapers on one Google Map.  Navigating the map, it may be tricky locating the paper you want from areas of dense marker population. Luckily you can use the search boxes to locate titles by place and name; that’s usually the easier path. What makes this resource really useful is each title is linked with translation options (though it doesn’t always deliver I discovered). Give it a try.  It’s fun reading even (or especially) without a research agenda.