Wicked Witch of the West
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Ding, Dong, the Witch is Dead

I must express my surprise at all the journalist tributes today for Katie Cotton, who suddenly left Apple. One post offers little praise. Over at Valleywag, Sam Biddle calls her the “queen of evil PR“. To me, she is Apple’s wicked witch of public relations. Did someone drop a house on Cotton, because the departure seems so sudden?

Putting context around the praise, “what no one will admit is that we were all afraid of her”, Sam writes. “Even at the end of Cotton’s reign, journalists are still in such a state of terror and awe they don’t dare speak openly about her reign of silence and smokescreen”.[Read more]

Simon Ostrovsky back story
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Now THIS is Journalism!

No words can describe how much I like VICE News. The videos are immersive and in your face. The stories are punchy, and in your face. Whether text or film, the reporting style provokes. How often do you read “shit” in news copy, for example?

In story “Tea Partiers Are Now Harassing High School Kids on Cinco de Mayo” Alice Speri writes: “That predictably led to a bunch of local conservatives losing their shit, with some parents suing the school for First Amendment infringement”. I love it! [Read more]

The Paper
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Report! Don’t Repeat Rumors!

I don’t know if Google is strategically realigning its social network, nor if that is reason for Vic Gundotra’s sudden departure from the company. Google+ is, or was, his baby. But I do know what is irresponsible reporting, and there is plenty of it among tech bloggers and journalists. TechCrunch leads the pack, but the real offenders are those who follow along—news gatherers who repeat rather than report.

Following Gundotra’s April 24 departure announcement, Alexia Tsotsis and Matthew Panzarino posted at TechCrunch: “Google+ is Walking Dead”. The headline is compelling and clickable and would be worthy of praise if not for the anonymous sourcing. The story claims major reorganization that reduces the service’s role: “Google+ will no longer be considered a product, but a platform…Google+ is not ‘officially’ dead, more like walking dead”.[Read more]