A Magazine by the Society of Professional Journalists


Author Archives: Lou Harry


November 25th, 2020
“Bad Education,” “The Photograph,” “Most Wanted” and more journalism movies Need ideas for what to watch over the holiday breaks? Here are a batch of recent films we’ve added to our almost-exhaustive, ranked list of 110+ Journalism Movies. To see where these are ranked and to view the entire list, click here. 


November 17th, 2020
Caution boosted credibility in election coverage Lost in the Trump-fueled chaos of the presidential election is a glimmer of light cast on the news media for doing an exceptional job covering it. In recent years, news organizations have been trying harder to prove to news consumers they can be trusted by providing information about reporters who covered a story, uploading more documents to back up their reporting and explaining controversial news decisions, among other efforts.


November 16th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 11/16/2020 Do they allow inmates at Camp Cupcake to read Wine Spectator? What pairs well with half-baked insider trading schemes, anyway? There’s lots to chew on in this week’s News Biz Quiz.     “Read News, Speak Free” is the slogan of what conservative social media platform which became the most-downloaded software on the Apple App Store on the weekend many news organizations called the 2020 election for President-elect Joe Biden?   Three news photographers who captured images of President Trump golfing on the day his electoral loss was announced by the news networks had to shoot their images from nearly a mile away across what body of water?   A California District Court judge said Mayor Christina Shea violated the First Amendment when she blocked some viewers of her Facebook profile, following controversial statements she made in the wake of this summer’s police brutality protests.


November 10th, 2020
From a Brooklyn apartment to the Kennedy Center, BIPOC critics lab challenges norms There’s no question that the arts criticism world is primarily a white world, with few BIPOC (Black, Indiginous and people of color) voices in the mix. Frustrated by that fact, Jose Solís, co-founder and co-host of the Token Theatre Friends podcast, decided to take matters into his own hands by creating the BIPOC Critics Lab, meeting for 10 weeks via Zoom with eight future critics from around the country.


November 9th, 2020
News Biz Quiz: Election edition The election may have an outcome, but we still have questions…in this week’s News Biz Quiz. 1. Arrange these news networks by the order in which they (FINALLY!) called the 2020 presidential election on Saturday, Nov. 7: NBC CBS ABC CNN Fox News 2.


November 2nd, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 11/2: Election inaccuracies, disinformation and a legendary sports scribe “BREAKING: Dewey Defeats Truman!”  Or maybe not.  It regularly takes a while — sometimes days, even — to get full results from an election. So we shouldn’t call the outcome and risk disenfranchising voters until we’re sure.  In the meantime, while we all patiently wait, try this week’s News Biz Quiz.


October 26th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 10/28: New meaning to ‘media exposure’ In this week’s News Biz Quiz, we learn what the term “media exposure” is NOT supposed to mean, and there’s no joy in Mudville as sports networks lose carriers.   1. Okay, let’s dispense with this straightaway: What legal analyst was suspended from his job at The New Yorker and placed on leave by CNN after (accidentally, he says) exposing himself on a Zoom call with colleagues?


October 22nd, 2020
Before you write about that “haunted” house … Editor’s Note: ‘Tis the season…for otherwise credible publications to publish unsubstantiated reports of haunted houses and other paranormal activity. To discuss why this is a problem, Quill reached out to Dr. Rob Pyatt, who led the “Weird Science: What Journalists Get Wrong About Scientific Studies…and How to Get It Right” program at the SPJ2020.


October 19th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 10/19: a buyout, a merger and a gossip columnist documentary Hello, Mr. and Mrs. America, from border to border and coast to coast and all the ships at sea, let’s go to press…with this week’s News Biz Quiz!   A University of Mississippi study shows that what group of people is appearing on three times more magazine covers than in past years?


October 13th, 2020
Q&A: Leonard Downie Jr. on 44 years with The Washington Post, his memoir and more During his 44 years at The Washington Post, 17 of them as executive editor, Leonard Downie Jr. found himself at the nexus of historic events ranging from Watergate to 9/11 to the Clinton impeachment. Now, as the Weil Family Professor of Journalism at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, he finally has the time to put it all down in his just-released personal memoir, “All About the Story: News, Power, Politics and The Washington Post.” 


October 12th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 10/12: Twitter rules, an auctioned desk and more No, The Big Red Machine is not the name for Alexander Lukashenko’s cabinet. But they both figure into this week’s News Biz Quiz.   Over the weekend, the Radio-Television Digital News Association held its national awards ceremony digitally, due to COVID-19. For what legendary newsman are those awards named?


October 8th, 2020
Bookshelf: A career journalist travels the U.S. to define “Genus Americanus” Mark Twain once said that “travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” It is those who never wander past their front door, who have the hardest time making sense of a world in constant evolution, where the status quo is a symbol of stagnation, rather than progress. 


October 5th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 10/5: Anything but a slow news week There have been no shortage of national news stories this week. But we’ve got some questions about the news behind the news. Good luck.   During its current session (which begins this week), the U.S. Supreme Court will review proposed changes to media ownership rules which have been stuck down by lower courts, but could lead to even greater consolidation if SCOTUS lets them stand.


September 28th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 9/28: A merger, a debate and more. This week’s events in the media world have been far from trivial. But how much did you pick up on the details. Test yourself with these questions, culled from the headlines and beyond.   D.C. District Court Judge Carl Nichols has temporarily halted the Trump Administration from banning what social media app from U.S.


September 23rd, 2020
Bookshelf: “Community-Centered Journalism” raises issues of trust and objectivity  Andrea Wenzel comes not to bury journalism. She comes, as she says in her book “Community-Centered Journalism: Engaging People, Exploring Solutions, and Building Trust,” to both burn it down and repair it.   An assistant professor at Temple University, Wenzel certainly is critical of the way journalism traditionally has been practiced.


September 21st, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 9/21: What did Trump call “the most beautiful thing”? The news doesn’t slow down and neither does the News Biz Quiz. Here are this week’s questions:   1. In a campaign speech on September 18, President Trump called it “the most beautiful thing” that what MSNBC host (and former host of CNN’s “Your Money”) was hit in the knee with a rubber bullet while covering a May protest in Minneapolis over George Floyd’s killing by police?