Sep 30, 2014

Photos of The Week

     Montgomery Firefighters practice controlling water hoses in the parking lot of the old Montgomery Mall. 
     Their newest fire station is at the other end of the old shopping mecca.

Sep 29, 2014

MMMM # 466 -- New Media Phobia, and an MSNBC insult.

     Yes, I do have some tech phobia, as I suppose is common among older journalists. 
     I believe there is a tech wall out there for all of us, unless the technology evolves fast enough to help us to avoid a head-on crash.

     Did you readily adopt the home PC or Apple...but have no interest in a pad? Did you spend hundreds on one those early big brick cellphones, but now refuse to buy one of the "smart" phone that allow you to cook dinner and project movies onto the side you your house? 
     I have to remind myself that there are constants that do not change. Like content and the story telling in journalism.

     But when The New School in New York (which I attended back in the day) starts offering a combination design and journalist class , I find myself back at that brick wall again.


     What will the media be like 34 years for now?
 Read what The N.Y. Times wrote in predicting one aspect of the media future---in 1980.

     The average "sound bite" ( small piece of an interview) in a TV newscast is down to seven seconds. Yet The CBS Evening News on Sunday aired one that was just shy of two minutes.
     Yes, it was President Obama, and it was a clip from the 60 Minutes Season Premier that was coming in less than an hour, and it did include at least one question from Steve Croft, but still. A 1:50 sound bite is amazing.
[You can read the transcript of the interview here.]


And thanks so much to MSNBC for insulting me and others who were on their site over the weekend. A pop-up offered email updates from the website, and the negative response was "No thanks, I don't want to keep up with the day's stories." No, MSNBC, I don't want you sending crap to my email inbox.

[The Monday Morning Media Memo is  regular feature of Tim]

Sep 28, 2014

A Black Slave in a Confederate Uniform?

     Robert Webster was the slave of a man who owned hundreds of slaves and thousand of acres of land (including 1,000 in Alabama), yet here he apparently is in a Confederate uniform.
     Is it proof of the often stated neo-confederate belief that more than a few southern blacks fought on the side of The South in the war?
     Here's the story in Smithsonian Magazine.

Tomorrow's Monday Morning Media Memo

  • A network newscast airs a sound bite that is 1:50 long...that's one minute and fifty seconds.
  • Another network insults visitors to its website.
  • And you may not believe the 1980's prediction about the 
future of new media.
MMMM # 466 will post at 1:00AM tomorrow.
"What was very surprising to the responders was that these were kids that were out at 1 o'clock in the morning in a club and this type of violence took place where a bunch of kids were gathering," he said. "It's very disturbing to see that."

15 people shot at a club party in Miami, the youngest 11.

Sunday Focus: +/- one mile an hour

    That's all it would have taken for the bus with the softball team on it to avoid being in the path of the truck that crossed the interstate this weekend. Four of the players died.

     For me, it raised the old question of predetermination. I have a relative who firmly believes everything is set in advance, as we just kinda walk the bases. My basic question: if you really believe that, then why try to do anything good? Why drive safely?

     An ancient question, for sure, but it popped up as I was considering the grief of the parents of those girls in Oklahoma. I started including links to various pages on the subject, but there are thousands, and I did not want to discriminate against any of the many, many beliefs. Was it predetermined that I would write that?

[Sunday Focus is a regular feature of Tim