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When Big Media Attacks Itself
12/27/2002

Although I think very many bloggers could put David Shaw's list of the ten worst moments in news media for 2002 to shame, it does cover some of the requisite ground. I do, however, find it telling (and a bit bothersome) that Mr. Shaw listed the fact that the Washington Post opened a story about the lack of qualifications of the U.N. weapons inspectors with a reference to the one who is a big figure (literally and figuratively) in the S&M scene. I shiver to live in a world in which a journalist can ask, "Why was that relevant?" (Maybe we should send over Tiger Man, too.)

But here's an outrage about which I hadn't even heard (although my having not heard about it is the only surprising aspect):

More than 40,000 people showed up in April for an Israel Independence Day Festival in Los Angeles that doubled as a rally to support Israel during Mideast hostilities. The mayor was there. So was the governor of California -- and many other dignitaries. The story got big play in the local media. But the Los Angeles Times didn't publish a word on the rally in the next day's paper.

The explanation: "We didn't cover it because we didn't know about it," one Times editor said. Huh? Traffic near the event was so heavy that radio stations broadcast advisories, and the event was listed on the City News Service "budget" that serves as a tip sheet for all local media. I don't agree with angry Jewish leaders who saw this as a deliberate slight by the paper, but it was an oversight of monumental proportions.

Posted by Justin Katz @ 09:52 AM EST