Coverage Rapid, And Often Wrong, In Tragedy’s Early Hours : NPR

Nearly everyone reported so many things wrong in the first 24 hours after the Sandy Hook shootings that it’s hard to single out any one news organization or reporter for criticism. Among the news outlets that wrongly reported major parts of the journalistic building blocks of “who, what, where, when, why and how,” were CBS, The Associated Press, The New York Times and NPR — a veritable honor roll of the mainstream media. Many…

As Shooting Story Unfolds, Media Struggle With Facts

With so many unanswered questions, TV correspondents were left to set the scene and to convey the impact in words that continually failed them. However apt, the phrase “parents’ worst nightmare” became an instant cliche. And the word “unimaginable” was used countless times. But “imagine” was exactly what the horrified audience was helpless not to do. The screen was mostly occupied by grim or tearful faces, sparing everybody besides law…

Roger Ebert on how the press reports mass killings – Boing Boing

I have no patience for TV news, and feel my blood pressure rise when I see the fear-mongering (“What was the chemical spilled on Route 66 that 10,000 motorists drove over on their way home from work? Will it cause you and your family to die a horrible death? Janice will have that story after this commercial for life insurance!”) I have watched no TV coverage of the Newtown killings,…

Why no new Christmas carols?

Historically it’s been nearly impossible for a new Christmas song to break the impenetrable monopoly of “Away in a Manger” (1885); “The First Noel” (1823); “Oh, Come, All Ye Faithful” (1743); “Silent Night” (1818); “Deck the Halls” (1862); “Jingle Bells” (1857); “We Three Kings” (1857); “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” (17th century); “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” (words 1739, music 1840) – all still caroling favorites. Of course, to be…

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UChicago College Admissions, Indiana Jones Mystery Package

What we know: The package contained an incredibly detailed replica of “University of Chicago Professor” Abner Ravenwood’s journal from Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. It looks only sort of like this one, but almost exactly like this one, so much so that we thought it might have been the one that was for sale on Ebay had we not seen some telling inconsistencies in cover color and…

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Stage Right offers four versions of its musical ‘Annie’ | TribLIVE

Leapin‘ Lizards! There are four versions of the adorable little orphan with the big voice in Stage Right‘s holiday production of everybody‘s favorite musical, “Annie.” They‘re not on stage at the same time, and John Noble, who plays the one-and-only Daddy Warbucks, says each of the girls adds a little something different to her performance of the role. “It‘s a wonderful difference,” Noble says. “Each one is their own Annie.…

McSweeney’s Internet Tendency: Welcome to My Rare and Antiquarian eBook Shop.

Face it—eBook sales are up, analog eBook sales are down. Pretty soon collectors are going to realize that normal people no longer share their bourgeois fascination with things like the bittersweet aroma of ink on paper, or the satisfying heft of a classic hardcover, or the fact that books don’t randomly turn off when you forget to charge them. And when that day comes, not only will I finally be…

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StoryNexus: building your own adventure games

If you’re a veteran gamer you’ll remember the golden era of text-based adventures. The Hobbit, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, Zork… titles that conjured whole worlds out of narrative descriptions and two-word player inputs. That genre never went away, of course – interactive fiction communities still thrive on the web (a good place to look is the huge IF Archive). Often though, creating your own branching stories can be a complex…