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Sunday, August 4, 2013

A Historic Case for Prosecuting Journalists Who Report Leaks

Back in 1942, the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel wrote an opinion that determined a journalist could be in violation of the Espionage Act for reporting leaked information. Bob speaks to Gabriel Schoenfeld, author of Necessary Secrets: National Security, the Media and the Rule of Law about the Chicago Tribune reporter at the center of the case during WWII.
Jun Miyake - Lillies of the Valley


Gabriel Schoenfeld

Hosted by:

Bob Garfield

This week in national security, unpaid internships in the media, and more

A busy week in the security state from Manning to Snowden, an internet security reporter being harassed by Russian cyber criminals, and a look at unpaid internships in the media.

A Busy Week In the Security State

This week saw the conviction of Bradley Manning, congressional hearings on intelligence, and more stories broken from the leaks of Edward Snowden to The Guardian's Glenn Greenwald. Bob reflects on the public perception of government surveillance programs, the threats journalists face, and more.
Stateless - Miles to Go

A Historic Case for Prosecuting Journalists Who Report Leaks

Back in 1942, the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel wrote an opinion that determined a journalist could be in violation of the Espionage Act for reporting leaked information. Bob speaks to Gabriel Schoenfeld, author of Necessary Secrets: National Security, the Media and the Rule of Law about the Chicago Tribune reporter at the center of the case during WWII.
Jun Miyake - Lillies of the Valley

Telegram Surveillance

Back in the pre-digital 1940's, telegrams were the basis of the first large scale domestice surveillance program, launched by an agency that would become the NSA. Brooke speaks to "Daily Dot" writer Joe Kloc about the history of US surveillance, from the telegram to email.

From Russia with Love (And Heroin)

Journalist Brian Krebs has been writing about computer security for years, much to the chagrin of the online fraudsters and identity thieves he reports upon. He often finds himself on the receiving end of online attacks from these criminals, but last month, they hatched a much more elaborate plan. Brooke speaks to Krebs about being harassed by Russian cyber criminals.
Shigeto - Ringleader

Detroit As Metaphor

Since Detroit filed for bankruptcy last month, it's been the subject of intense national coverage. Detroit's also been held up as a metaphor for everything that ails the country financially. Bob talks to historian Kevin Boyle, who has written extensively about the city, about how Detroit is and isn't a good synecdoche for the rest of industrial America.
Nils Frahm - For


The World of Unpaid Internships

For years, unpaid internships have been a media industry standard. But over the past couple of months, there have been a rash of lawsuits against media companies for not paying interns. Brooke investigates the state of the unpaid internship.
Mark Mothersbaugh - Let me tell you about my boat

On the Media's Unpaid Interns

Brooke talks to former On the Media intern (and current producer) Alex Goldman, and current On the Media intern Molly Buckley about their experiences as interns for the show.
Zissou Society Blue Star Cadets - Ned's Theme

Scott Simon On Sharing His Mother's Final Moments On Twitter

If you are among NPR host , you likely know the news. Simon's mother, Patricia Lyons Simon Newman, entered a Chicago hospital on July 21 and died Monday night. She was 84 years old.
Over the weekend, when it became apparent she would not be leaving the ICU, Simon began of sitting — and sleeping — at his mother's bedside, and how he and Newman spent those final hours together.
It was a tender, lyrical and public way of saying goodbye. , "It led perfect strangers to tell Simon that he had made them burst into tears. Which led readers to think about good deaths and good lives."
NPR's Andy Carvin and the responses from the social media community. Simon spoke with All Things Considered host Audie Cornish on Tuesday from his mother's apartment in Chicago. We've excerpted much of the interview below.

Interview Highlights

Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon in 2012.
Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon in 2012.
On the outpouring of support
"I must say, among the millions of people we've been hearing from are, of course, NPR listeners. And it means a lot to our family because they all seem to say that they're not just giving condolences to me as someone they know, but that something my mother said meant something to them. It's pretty gratifying.

"I don't know why people have responded so powerfully. I think this is obviously a singular event that not only has to do with the death of my mother and the universal experience that is for all of us really but I think that also has to do with the impossible to duplicate presence of my mother, who was a one and only. So I don't try and analyze that."

On sharing his mother's final moments on Twitter
"When I first went to my mother in the ICU here in Chicago, more than a week ago at this point, I didn't know it was going to be her death bed and I, of course, was hoping and praying that it wouldn't be her death bed. But she was so interesting. And of course I was there all day, and it was the most interesting thing I was hearing all day. She was funny and perceptive and bright and sparkling and this is just something that I wanted to share.

Simon's parents on their wedding day.
Simon's parents on their wedding day.
Courtesy of Scott Simon
"I don't think it's any less sacred because it was shared with a lot of people and it must be said, you know, there was a lot of stuff that I didn't share. There was a lot of stuff that I will tell only my wife and maybe someday my children. I certainly had a sense of proportion and delicacy. I don't think my mother knew much about Twitter or social media platforms but I would read her an occasional message from someone in Australia, someone in Great Britain or Singapore and she was very touched. She was an old showgirl and I wouldn't — I didn't tweet anything and wouldn't have that I didn't think she would be totally comfortable with."

On the banter between him and his mother
"A constant, constant source of play between the two of us — 'Why that shirt?' And tie. That sort of thing. You know I always try to dress well for her and I always felt like I never dressed quite well enough for her. Although, I'm glad on the last day we had with each other, she looked up from her bed and said, 'You really look lovely today.' "

On what his mother taught him
"When she just looked up at me and said, 'Oh Earth, you're too beautiful for anyone to realize,' I think we can all stand to learn that. To know that in our bones. And when she told me, 'Honey, always take time with people in their 80s,' I hear her voice coming back into mine now. 'Always take time with people in their 80s because for more than a decade, they've been looking right across the street at death and they know what's really important in life.' I don't know about you, but I can stand to hear that message."

On their song
"She and I sang to each other a lot, in the ICU. I wish I could tell you it was grand opera. The song that kept popping up and we kept singing to each other, is Nat King Cole singing 'Unforgettable 'and I will hear that song again for the rest of my life and I bet I will sing it to my wife and sing it to my children. I will never hear that song without thinking of my mother."

Un-Hype' The News

Local Kentucky TV Station Wants To 'Un-Hype' The News

Sick of the hype that desperate local TV news programs use to try to draw viewers, a station in Louisville, Ky., is making a bold promise: If news isn't breaking at that moment, the station won't call it breaking news. It is part of a new compact with viewers and advertisers not to hype the news.

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.
And I'm Melissa Block.

In local TV news, one of the most basic ways to appeal to viewers is to constantly promise breaking news, but one station in Louisville, Kentucky, is taking a different approach. NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik tells us more.

DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE: The spot is for WDRB television in Louisville.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Breaking news is seldom actually breaking and quite often isn't even news. At WDRB, we never use that term. We believe the relationship you have with your television station shouldn't begin with a deception.

FOLKENFLIK: Deception? Bill Lamb is general manager at WDRB, the Louisville Fox affiliate.

BILL LAMB: We kind of looked around and saw that the other guys were playing a marketing game with breaking news, and we were taking an approach of better journalism, and we were hiring journalists who were better writers, better storytellers.

FOLKENFLIK: Lamb's station actually makes a 10-part promise.

LAMB: Well, we will not hype our product, and our promotion will always be truthful. We'll strive to present reporting that's bias free. You know, that's a difficult thing to do when human beings are putting together the news.

FOLKENFLIK: Lamb and his news director Barry Fulmer came up with this approach six years ago after they concluded their station's story on a school bus driver's arrest in her own car for DUI the night before, well, no laughing matter, was not news and not breaking. Only last month, however, did they start that promotional campaign, explicitly taking direct aim at Louisville's ratings leader, WLKY.


UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: Continue to stay with WLKY, live, local, late breaking.
ANDREA STAHLMAN: We've built a position of leadership in the market based on our belief that, you know, Louisville news viewers think that breaking news and weather coverage is important, and that's what we deliver.

FOLKENFLIK: Andrea Stahlman is news director for WLKY, a station owned by the Hearst Company, which has promoted its brand across the country.

STAHLMAN: We cover what's happening in the community. We cover crime stories. We cover events. We do investigative pieces. I mean, we cover severe weather.

FOLKENFLIK: WDRB covers a lot of the same news as everyone else - crime, politics, traffic, weather and even an occasional salacious expose as well. Yet, around town, a half dozen people told me they liked what they heard from WDRB. I met Tommy Feldman(ph), a retiree, down at Louisville's Waterfront Park by the banks of the Ohio River.

TOMMY FELDMAN: I like what WDRB is doing...


FELDMAN: ...because I get very tired of the breaking news because it's not.

FOLKENFLIK: But TV consultant Dave Smith, CEO of SmithGeiger, says local stations have to convey urgency and maybe even be a little bit breathless because they now face so many new challenges, such as text alerts, Yahoo! News and Twitter.

DAVE SMITH: It's not a choice that the television industry made. It's not a choice that news departments or cable news channels made. It's a choice that the audience made. There's no way to stop this onward march of technology and how it's affecting the delivery of news and information.

FOLKENFLIK: Whatever the platform, Bill Lamb argues people are eager to discern a different flavor in their news diet, and so far, he says it's working. The station is preparing to build an extension for its newsroom to handle all the new hires. David Folkenflik, NPR News.

When Comedians Cross Borders