The .xxx Domain Debuts

7 Dec

The site domain suffix .xxx has been made available for porn sites to register. The registration is entirely voluntary.  It has not been a day since the new website domain officially received the green light and already there are concerns as to how this would work. The main pros of the domain is that it would make the web a safer place to surf around especially for children. Also with a separate domain, potential porn site searchers can now easily browse through choices without scanning through the billions of sites with .com domains. Main worries regard whether or not the system would actually hurt porn sites by making blockage more easier.

When I first found out about the news my initial response was ‘how much porn sites are there that its worth having an entire domain name dedicated to them???’ Aside from my personal astonishment, I do think that this new domain system can be beneficial for all parties. First, parents have less concern over young children accidentally getting scarred for life due to random porn site entrances. Then we have porn distributors who can make themselves known better to new customers who would more likely visit their site whilst browsing under the domain category. Since the choice to register is free, porn site people don’t really have anything to worry about either. So far, so good. We’ll still have to see how this would turn out.


California Local Newspapers to End Monday Papers

7 Dec

Media News Group owned local newspapers in California are planning to cut costs by stop printing the Monday news. Papers like The Oakland Tribune, Fremont Argus and the Hayward Daily Review would only stop subscribed deliveries whilst making Monday newspapers still available in stands. In other cases such as the Vacaville Reporter and the Vallejo Times-Herald would stop printing newspapers altogether on Monday. This strategy aims to move readers toward its online papers.

Truly printed papers are at a huge disadvantage compared to e-news. The costs of printing can be a burden when nowadays news can be published on free digital paper. I don’t know why any of the papers would cut cost by getting rid of the Monday paper, it just seems rather random. There could be other ways to be more cost efficient without not publishing news for an entire day.

Mike Keefe’s buyout

6 Dec

Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist Mike Keefe just took a buyout at The Denver Post. He commented “It looks like nothing but a down escalator for the classic full-time newspaper cartoonist.” Keefe also added “The digital realm is wide open and offers plenty of opportunities. Unfortunately, most don’t come with a pay check.” Many have viewed the event as a sign that shows the dismal future of the editorial cartoon landscape.

My favorite portion of the newspaper has long been the cartoon. Not only was it cynical, but the issues it talked about were pointed out in a humorous and witty manner. The brilliance of editorial cartoons have lost its place with the downfall of the newspaper. In its place came user generated cartoons that are at times funny enough to substitute traditional editorial cartoons. However, the high quality of criticism and insight offered before is sadly at an extinction point.

iPad App Accused of Stealing Off Front Page News from Newseum

6 Dec

The iPad news app Extra! Extra! featuring “800 major newspaper front pages” was accused of shoplifting the picuture pages from the Newseum website. App developer responded that the images of a newspaper front were “publicly accessible.” To this the people who run the Newseum site emphasized the exclusive nature of the pictures that have been provided and that it was not in anyway “publicly accessible” as the app developer had pointed out.

Newslifting has been a problem since the dawn of newspapers. Now with the internet, it has become more prevalent than ever. Never in history has it been easier to copy and paste a story or simply download a jpeg file of a picture.  With these kinds of tech support lazy news reporting has become a growing problem. Especially with news aggregators merely providing cover stories from proper news sites. I think this is the first time I saw an app getting into trouble for stealing stuff off from a website, but more are to come I expect. Regulations on internet or gadget based stories should be more specified.

Cincinnati Enquirer Journalists to Speak “in Their Own Words”

6 Dec

The Cincinnati Enquirer launched a campaign that would feature its very own journalists. They would speak for around 2 or so minutes on video about how things are to be working in the news industry. Mark Woodruff, vice president of market development for Enquirer Media, came up with this idea as a response to the people who deem a career in journalism as a dead end job. By having actual journalists frankly talk about what they think about their job and what they wish to accomplish as a journalist, the paper has earned more trust from it’s readers as well as positive responses in the fresh attempt.

It is true that newspapers have been met with a series of hardships, one after the  other, because of all the fast pace technological changes. The idea of having the journalists literally speak “in their own words” about what they think about their lives as a journalist seemed like an interesting way to let people know that journalism isn’t all depressed. Hopefully, this ad would add more optimism towards the future of journalism for its viewers

Phone Hacking Acceptable in the Name of Journalism?

5 Dec

Former News of The World journalist Paul McMullen told a British parliamentary committee that eavesdropping on phones is “perfectly acceptable” as a journalistic method. His exact words were “Phone hacking is a perfectly acceptable tool given the sacrifices we make, if all we are trying to do is get to the truth.” In defense of the journalists who eavesdropped on Milly Dowler’s voice mail messages, he commented that “our intentions were honorable.” McMullen pointed out that the police’s incompetence in the reason why journalists should take matters into their own hands.

The issue of the phone hacking scandal has been beaten to death to the ground by every newspaper/magazine/social network/bathroom stall doodles – basically any platform that conveys news I can think of. This is the very story that brought the Murdoch empire to slowly crumble before the world’s eyes. The phone hacking gave the family false hope in the girl’s survival as well as interfering with the investigation.

It is interesting that anyone would think to defend what the journalists did because they had “honorable intentions.” This actually brings up an interesting question on how far journalists should go to pursue a story. Does invading privacy cross the line? Yes it does. This is the point when journalistic endeavor crosses over to paparazzi. Whether the intentions were good or not, the means were definitely unacceptable in this case, period. As journalists we need to adhere to an ethical set of rules. Without it, there is no “honor” in reporting truth.

New York Times’ New Comment System

5 Dec

The New York Times has decided to go with a new commenting system that focuses on reader participation. A commentator would earn the title “trusted commenter” by consistently getting approved comments over certain amount of time. These commentators would have their comments automatically approved to go public without the delay of going through the moderating process.

This seems like a nice idea as an attempt to build a more loyal readership as well as quality commentators. Comments sometimes do need to go through a moderator but then again this can come off as a over controlling gesture. I mean, people got to say what they got to say, especially to news. This system takes the benefits of allowing people to earn the right to freely comment while still maintaining other comments that need to be scrutinized. Overall, this seems like a win-win game.