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Monday, January 14, 2013

"We're Covering All . . . We Would Normally Be Covering"

Protests Quash "All My Babies' Mamas," Sources Say

Helene Cooper Won't Be in Pool for Obama's New Term

Ebony, Hispanic Magazines Gain Amid Overall Losses

Eugene Patterson Recalled for Courageous Integration Stand

BET's Lee, Hair Natural, Says, "We Have Choices Now"

Majority of Blacks, Hispanics Side With Israel

Short Takes

Students at Florida A&M University cover their mouths in photo illustrating the

"We're Covering All . . . We Would Normally Be Covering"

Student journalists at Florida A&M University, their newspaper "delayed" until Jan. 30 on orders of new Dean Ann Kimbrough of the School of Journalism & Graphic Communication, published online instead Monday.

"We're covering all the news that we would normally be covering," Karl Etters, editor of the Famuan, the student newspaper, told Journal-isms by telephone.

The website is called Ink and Fangs.

The publication delay is indirectly related to accreditation issues and to drum major Robert Champion's well-publicized hazing death in November 2011. "Investigations revealed many band members were not enrolled in the music course as required. Since then all student organizations on campus have come under more strict requirements," Jennifer Portman reported last week in the Tallahassee Democrat.

". . . A Dec. 2, 2011, article in the student newspaper incorrectly stated senior Keon Hollis was one of four drum majors suspended in connection with Champion's death. Three days later, The Famuan posted a revised article on its website omitting Hollis' name and noting the fourth suspended student could not be identified. On Feb. 14, 2012, The Famuan published a correction, but the lawsuit noted it failed to say Hollis had nothing to do with Champion's death or the crime of hazing.

"Hollis' lawsuit, filed in Leon County Dec. 3 against the newspaper, university and its board of trustees, alleges the student newspaper failed to 'exercise ordinary care,' lacked a credible source for its information and failed to investigate what amounted to 'nothing more than unverified and unsubstantiated rumor and gossip.' The complaint contends Hollis' reputation was damaged by the implication he played a role in the hazing that killed Champion. No court dates have been set."

Kimbrough last week ordered additional training for Famuan staff members, which Etters said began on Monday.

Kimbrough messaged Journal-isms Monday night that she had seen inkandfangs.com. She added, "I am thrilled about the strong support of the student journalists from Famuan alums and Famu alums. The alums are interested in helping students via mentoring relationships and many alums are placing ads in the Jan. 30 paper. The Famuan is in financial distress ... one of the critical matters being addressed by the SJGC and university administration to ensure student success in their journalism education endeavors."

In an open letter to Kimbrough Monday, Dan Reimold of College Media Matters, which is sponsored by the Associate Collegiate Press, wrote, ". . . Champion's hazing death is horrendously tragic. The school's subsequent accreditation issues and image troubles are also unfortunate (although apparently at least somewhat deserved). The Famuan's admitted mistake in its Champion coverage last fall is troubling. The related lawsuit is certainly painful to bear. And the unrelated issue with some students' eligibility to serve on the paper is a definite cause for concern.

"But none of these things — or all of them, combined — come anywhere close to justifying killing or paralyzing the student press, however soon you may allow it to regain feeling or come back from the dead. Your (overre)action is simply dead wrong, and beneath your university and the position you hold."

Protests Quash "All My Babies' Mamas," Sources Say

"Author Sabrina Lamb was looking forward to kicking off her New Year with a bottle of champagne and a quiet walk on the beach. Instead, on the first day of January she was greeted with a video link from a friend of a brand-new reality show that sent chills down her spine," Allison Samuels wrote Monday for the Daily Beast.

"The video was for All My Babies’ Mamas, a new show developed by Oxygen Media featuring rapper Shawty Lo, his 11 kids, and 10 different mothers.

" 'My blood curdled just thinking about it,' Lamb told The Daily Beast.

"So did mine," Samuels continued. "And apparently that was the reaction of the nearly 40,000 people who signed a petition demanding that the show not air. Though the network denies it, Oxygen is expected to announce that All My Babies' Mamas won't ever see the light of day, according to my sources — and that's a good thing. Still, I'm more concerned with how it ever reached this point. How could a network ever assume that a show about an African-American rapper with 11 kids by 10 women would be OK and not immediately deemed racist? How could it not see that it was offending, insulting, and mocking an entire segment of the African-American community? The answer is pretty simple. The network saw it; the network just didn't care. . . . "

Kristin Welker of NBC News will be among the reporters returning to cover Presid

Helene Cooper Won't Be in Pool for Obama's New Term

Helene CooperHelene Cooper of the New York Times won't be covering the start of President Obama's second term, and the Washington Post's White House team won't include black journalists, according to a staff memo Monday. But other black journalists said they would be back.

Cooper, who moved from the State Department to the White House to cover the Obama administration, will be away for a year on book leave, David Leonhardt, the Times' Washington bureau chief, told Journal-isms. "She just started a book leave, alas. Great for her, but I miss her already. She returns to The Times in a year," he said by email.

Cooper, a native of Liberia, messaged that her book is about Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and the women who brought her to power in Liberia. "It's a look at the larger issue of women taking political control in Africa," she said, and will be published by Simon and Schuster.

Cooper's stories were not always White House favorites. Not long after she arrived, Politico reported, Cooper "was the target of a fusillade of complaints from Obama staffers and was for a time essentially frozen out by the administration . . . " Leonhardt said there was no announcement yet on the Times' new White House team.

A Washington Post memo from National Editor Kevin Merida said Scott Wilson, who has been covering the president, would become White House bureau chief, with David Nakamura continuing to be "a key player on our White House team."

Other team members will be Philip Rucker, "two months removed from covering Mitt Romney's quest for the presidency, turning his attention to the victor"; "The unstoppable Felicia Sonmez" as "our point person for digital coverage of the White House"; and Zachary Goldfarb, "who was indispensable explaining the fiscal cliff follies to our readers," joining the others "as an economic policy writer under a joint arrangement between Financial and National."

At the Associated Press, Darlene Superville, who covered the early years of the Obama White House before assuming editing duties, told Journal-isms she would be a general-assignment White House reporter and its primary staffer covering the first lady.

For broadcast, April Ryan of American Urban Radio Networks said she would return, and that as of Sunday, she had covered the White House for 16 years, including three presidents.

Dan Lothian of CNN, Wendell Goler of Fox News and Kristin Welker of NBC News are also returning, the reporters or their networks told Journal-isms.

As this column noted in November, the composition of the Washington press corps periodically comes under scrutiny. In 2008, Unity: Journalists of Color Inc. and the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University found that "Journalists of color make up 13.1 percent of the 495 reporters, correspondents, columnists and editors in the Washington daily newspaper press corps. That's an improvement over the last census four years ago, when just under 10.5 percent of the press corps consisted of minority journalists."

Then Obama took office, and more black journalists were assigned to the new administration. At the Post, the new Obama presidency coincided with a national desk newly led by Merida, with Terence Samuel as a political editor and Krissah Thompson, Perry Bacon Jr., Michael A. Fletcher and Nia-Malika Henderson among its reporters. Bacon left the paper for the Grio, and Fletcher now covers the economy, but Vanessa Williams became a night political editor.

Still, Wayne Dawkins, a Hampton University journalism assistant professor, reported in the Diversity Factor, a subscription-only online journal, "As of 2009, the Washington Press corps was less diverse than the group that covered George W. Bush from 2001-08. Media downsizing wiped out experienced journalists of color who were prepared to compete for those top beats, meanwhile, cuts in state and local gov't and political reporting dried up the pipeline of new recruits."

Politico hired Joseph Williams as deputy White House editor in 2010, but Williams left the publication last year after his editors disapproved of his comments and tweets about Romney.

Ebony, Hispanic Magazines Gain Amid Overall Losses

Ebony ad pages rose 22.9 percent.Ebony magazine was the only major black title to post an increase in advertising pages during 2012, while all four major Hispanic magazines did, the Publishers Information Bureau reported on Monday.

"For the seventh straight year, ad pages declined for the industry, down 8.2 percent, from 164,190.17 to 150,698.57 during 2012, according to new data from the Publishers Information Bureau," Bill Cromwell reported for medialifemagazine.com.

However, Ebony showed a gain of 22.9 percent, second only to Reader's Digest Large Edition, which was up 30.9 percent.

Stephen G. Barr, senior vice president of Johnson Publishing Co. and group publisher of Ebony and Jet, attributed Ebony's success to sales and marketing team efforts to secure more first-time advertisers, an increase by existing advertisers who increased their overall spending and "advertiser/reader feedback [that] recognizes the editorial excellence of the book."

Among other African American titles, Black Enterprise ad pages declined by 9.5 percent, Essence dropped by 10.3 percent and Jet by 13 percent.

Ser Padres ad pages rose by 28.8 percent.The Hispanic parenting magazine Ser Padres, published by the Meredith Corp., increased its advertising pages by 28.8 percent.

A year ago, Enedina Vega, vice president and publisher of Meredith Hispanic Ventures, attributed increases to growing awareness among advertisers of the importance of the Hispanic market and the growth of that market's numbers and affluence.

"My previous comments still hold true," Vega said by email on Monday. "In the case of Ser Padres we are the only Spanish language parenting book in the market, and although birth rates in the U.S. are down for every segment of the population, the Hispanic segment still has the highest growth rate. 33% of [moms] between the ages of 18-24, which most likely represents first time moms, are Hispanic."

Among other Hispanic magazines, Latina's ad pages increased by 2.1 percent, People en Español by 18.6 percent and Siempre Mujer, another Meredith publication, by 17.2 percent.

Nelson Poynter, left, and Eugene Patterson in 1975. Poynter, who owned the St.

Patterson Recalled for Courageous Integration Stand

"In the days, weeks and months to come, there will be many amazing tributes to Eugene Patterson, the accomplished, talented former editor of the St. Petersburg Times who set the stage for so much of how we do journalism at the Times and in the Tampa Bay area while speaking out on one of the most important issues of his time — racial equality," Eric Deggans wrote Monday for the Times.

". . . But I wanted to pay tribute here to Patterson, who died Saturday at age 89 after a long illness, for serving as one of the best examples of an editor, columnist and journalist who made a difference by taking the right stand at the right time — challenging many who would eventually acknowledge they stood on the wrong side of history — in a way every person who slings opinions for a living dreams of accomplishing.

"Pick up The Changing South of Gene Patterson, the wonderful selection of Patterson's columns in the Atlanta Journal Constitution newspaper from 1960 to 1968 for a look at how his willingness to advocate strongly for the rights of black people at a time when may corners of white society resisted racial equality, proved a brilliant template for how to push social change in prescient writing. . . . "

The Associated Press added, ". . . His famous column of Sept, 16, 1963, about the Birmingham, Ala., church bombing that killed four girls — 'A Flower for the Graves' — was considered so moving that he was asked by Walter Cronkite to read it nationally on the 'CBS Evening News.'

" 'A Negro mother wept in the street Sunday morning in front of a Baptist Church in Birmingham,' Patterson began his column. 'In her hand she held a shoe, one shoe, from the foot of her dead child. We hold that shoe with her.

" 'Every one of us in the white South holds that small shoe in his hand. … We who go on electing politicians who heat the kettles of hate. … (The bomber) feels right now that he has been a hero. He is only guilty of murder. He thinks he has pleased us. We of the white South who know better are the ones who must take a harsher judgment.'

" 'It was the high point of my life,' Patterson later said in a June 2006 interview from his home in St. Petersburg. . . ."

BET's Lee, Hair Natural, Says, "We Have Choices Now"

Debra L. LeeAttendees at the taping of the annual all-star "BET Honors" came Saturday night with their glamor on, their hair twisted, teased, wigged, weaved, extended, straightened and/or dreadlocked. But the CEO presiding over the festivities, in contrast, wore hers in a short, natural style.

Debra L. Lee, chairman and CEO of Black Entertainment Television, told Journal-isms she had been wearing her hair that way since July. "I just wanted to," she said on the stage of Washington's Warner Theatre. "It was time for a change. I do it every now and then.

"The great thing is that we have choices now. I've heard other women say I've inspired them."

Although natural hairstyles are regaining popularity, how black women wear their hair can still be an issue in the workplace. Rhonda Lee, the meteorologist who lost her job at KTBS-TV in Shreveport, La., after she responded to a Facebook post questioning her natural hair, is just one example. (The station said she violated policy by responding to the viewer.)

Lee told Essence magazine last week, "I'm okay if Solange wears a weave, or Wendy Williams a wig. My only concern is my having the freedom to wear my hair the way I want to. That's the freedom we enjoy as Black women. My industry is a visual medium, and I understand that, but I feel like my White co-workers are told things like, 'Get a nice little cut to frame your face.' They're not told to be completely, biologically different. And that is the burden that I have. I want my biology to be honored and respected."

Blogger Chime Edwards wrote in November that when she saw Debra Lee's hair, ". . . I was shocked, amazed and excited all at once!" She added, ". . . There are many black women who have made the decision to go natural but there are tons who are hesitant because of their profession. Some women believe, "Natural hair isn't professional. How can I expect to move up in a company with my hair in an Afro? . . ." Edwards reassured readers that their fears might be unfounded, citing Ursula Burns, chairman and CEO OF Xerox Corp.

The event Lee headed, the sixth annual "BET Honors," paid tribute to music-industry entrepreneur Clarence Avant, actress Halle Berry, Bishop T.D. Jakes, veteran singer Chaka Khan and retired WNBA all-star Lisa Leslie. Joining them on stage were host Gabrielle Union, actress Phylicia Rashad, comedian Cedric the Entertainer, singers Erykah Badu, Kem, Kelly Rowland, Brandy and Alicia Keys, music producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, the rhythm 'n' blues acts S.O.S. Band and Mint Condition, entertainer Wayne Brady and actor Anthony Anderson.

In the audience were presidential adviser Valerie Jarrett, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., District of Columbia Mayor Vincent Gray, Olympic gold medalist Claressa Shields and Philippe Dauman, CEO of Viacom, BET's parent company. Tickets went for $500.

"The show will air on Monday, February 11 at 9:00 pm EST," spokeswoman Sheikina Liverpool said by email. "We had approximately 1,500 guests in attendance and raised over $59,000 for Life Pieces to Masterpieces, Inc., an organization that provides opportunities for African American boys and young men in greater Washington, D.C. by developing and unlocking their potential and empowering them to transform their lives and communities."

Majority of Blacks, Hispanics Side With Israel

A majority of African Americans and Hispanics support Israel over the Palestinians, according to a new survey from the Pew Research Center, despite efforts by many to portray the Palestinians as fellow oppressed people of color.

According to figures provided to Journal-isms Monday by the Pew center, 42 percent of blacks said they sympathized more with Israel, 12 percent said the Palestinians, 13 percent said neither and 33 percent said both or that they did not know.

Among Hispanics, 47 percent said they sympathized more with Israel, 13 percent said the Palestinians, 13 percent said neither and 27 percent said both or they did not know.

Among whites, the figure was 53 percent sympathizing with Israel, 9 percent saying the Palestinians, 14 percent saying neither and 25 percent saying both or that they did not know.

The survey included 1,104 whites, 144 blacks and 128 Hispanics.

The New York-based America's Voices in Israel has been sponsoring all-expense-paid trips to Israel for Hispanic journalists in order to influence the United States' growing Latino population, its director, Irwin Katsof, has told Journal-isms. The Anti-Defamation League, which sponsored a similar trip, has said it was concerned about what it considered an unacceptable level of anti-Semitism among Latinos, particularly new arrivals.

". . . Discussion of the U.S.-Israeli relationship is likely to come to the fore with the nomination of former Nebraska senator Chuck Hagel as President Obama's new secretary of defense," the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press said last week. "The choice of Hagel has drawn criticism from some of his former Republican colleagues on Capitol Hill, who have questioned whether he has been supportive enough of Israel."

Short Takes

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Richard Prince's Journal-isms originates from Washington and is published Monday, Wednesday and Friday. It began in print before most of us knew what the Internet was, and it would like to be referred to as a "column." For newcomers: The words in blue (on most computers) are links leading to more information. The Web site BugMeNot.com provides passwords and user names to some registration-only news sites, but use may be illegal in some states. Any views expressed in the column are those of the person or organization quoted and not those of any other entity.

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Comments

Cross-positngs from the Root on "All My Babies' Mamas"

ball_game

Since he's not going to be able to make money, who's gonna take care of those ten children? Are any of those who are responsible for shutting the show down gonna take care of those ten children? I DON'T THINK SO!!! I've never seen a people that cried racism than my own people. It is sickening.

Pea Scott

****Though the network denies it, Oxygen is expected to announce that All My Babies' Mamas won't ever see the light of day, according to my sources.

GOOD!!!!

Shawnty Lo wasn't the first and he won't be the last. But Shawnty Lo and his 10 baby mama drama DOES NOT belong on ANY television.

There is enough profit being gained through television from p*ss poor behavior. And IT IS p*ss poor pathetic behavior when a man has 11 children by 10 different mothers. And then wants the world to be a part of their dysfunction while he makes a profit!!

Trueletterson

I don't care for any of it however I find it peculiar that the same black people who protest, write letters and sign partition to get Shawty Lo’s All My Babies' Mamas cancel are the same people who would not be caught dead watching and detest NeNe Leaks and housewives of Atlanta, Single Ladies and love and hip hop but at the same time love and admire Olivia Pope on Scandal and co sign, push and champion far left wing liberal and progressive new thang alternatives life styles. I am just saying you know what I mean, not judging!

clarke101

I've been playing PUBLIC ENEMY all morning. "IT TAKES AN ARMY OF MILLIONS TO HOLD US BACK". "

"FIGHT THE POWER"

Jehu

"Concerned with how it ever reached this point"?

There's precedent (Basketball Wives, Real Atlanta Housewives, etc.)!!

Remember that thoughts, choices, events, and circumstances don't occur in vacuums. They have outlying effects and consequences.

Pea Scott, Bobby Williams and clarke101 like this.

LogicalLeopard

*LOLOL* What is he doing in that picture? Saying, "Magnum? I thought ya'll was giving me a car! Ya'll can take these...these...what is this, some kind of candy? Take it back and give me my car!!!"

clarke101 and Jehu like this.

Jehu

LOL!!!

clarke101

LOL. Yeah that's the FIRST thing I saw too LL. we can always count on you for keen observation and a good one liner. The Root won't let me post my comment on what he's probably gonna be doing next. LOL.

clarke101

HINT: It starts with a P.

ball_game

Since he's not going to be able to make money, who's gonna take care of those ten children?

Are any of those who are responsible for shutting the show down gonna take care of those ten children? I DON'T THINK SO!!! I've never seen a people that cried racism than my own people. It is sickening.

LogicalLeopard

Interesting perspective! *L* Uhm....now see, I'm of the opinion that the embarrasment that the children would have faced in this situation is far less than any money they would have gotten. It was never an issue of racism with me, these are real people who did real things and happen to be black. Racists don't need to use Shawty Lo as ammuntion, they'll find their own elsewhere.

But like I said, I understand I'm not in their position, but I think it's a lot more healthy for the families to not get the constant exposure, and the kids to not have to watch their father interact with the other kids rather than any payment. But really, if this was a one or two shot show as I've heard, they've probably already been paid. I think you get paid for participating, your pay isn't based on whether or not the final product airs.

Pea Scott and clarke101 like this.

clarke101

I think you're right LL. So Oxygen lost money on this BULLS**T. GOOD!.

Jehu

He IS "able to make money." Surely, he's BEEN financially supporting these children.?.?

Pea Scott likes this.

clarke101

@ball_game. You're a freak'n IDIOT. Black people don't own Oxegen. We protested THE NETWORK. We just didn't want to see these peoples INGORNANCE on tv. There's ENOUGH of that ALREADY. Get a damn clue, FOOL.

clarke101

OOPS 'OXYGEN'.

Pea Scott

****Though the network denies it, Oxygen is expected to announce that All My Babies' Mamas won't ever see the light of day, according to my sources.

GOOD!!!!

Shawnty Lo wasn't the first and he won't be the last. But Shawnty Lo and his 10 baby mama drama DOES NOT belong on ANY television.

There is enough profit being gained through television from p*ss poor behavior. And IT IS p*ss poor pathetic behavior when a man has 11 children by 10 different mothers. And then wants the world to be apart of their dysfunction while he makes a profit!!

PATTIEA53, clarke101, Jehu and LogicalLeopard like this.

LogicalLeopard

I've got to say that I do enjoy certain reality television, mostly competition games like Survivor. I'm not a fan of the drama shows, and this one would be downright painful to watch, because it involves CHILDREN. I can't imagine being one of these kids, already having to deal with the fact that I'm not going to get more than an eleventh of my father's time if he spends it equally. Then on top of that, you have to watch your father interact with other kids on tv, maybe thinking, "Wow...he gets along better with Billy because Billy likes footballl. Maybe that's why he doesn't visit me as often...." Or going through the jokes at school.

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