A Magazine by the Society of Professional Journalists


Author Archives: Lou Harry


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?


September 15th, 2020
Bookshelf: Brian Stelter’s “Hoax: Donald Trump, Fox News, and the Dangerous Distortion of Truth” In order to understand Donald Trump, Brian Stelter argues in his new book, you have to understand Fox News.  Stelter, CNN chief media correspondent and anchor of “Reliable Sources,” put that view between covers in “Hoax: Donald Trump, Fox News, and the Dangerous Distortion of Truth,” for which he interviewed 140 current Fox staffers and 180 former employees.


September 14th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 9/14: Woodward’s book, HOG overhaul, more Just because we had a conference over the weekend doesn’t mean we’re skipping the News Biz Quiz for this week.   But, first, let’s take a moment to congratulate SPJ2020 Pub Trivia winner Kelly Kissel who triumphed against a very tough field in ten rounds of questions.


September 10th, 2020
SPJ2020: Virtual D.C. tours for a virtual conference  SPJ’s Washington, D.C. Pro chapter was really looking forward to showing off the city during this year’s national conference.  But since you all can’t join us in person, we can at least offer  a few virtual highlights to give you a taste of D.C. 


September 9th, 2020
California freelancers battle AB5 and the PROAct Assembly Bill 5, or AB5, ripped through the careers of California freelance journalists much like wildfires churn through the Golden State, turning trees and bushes into plumes of ash. I am one of the lucky ones, whose freelance career has been damaged, but not completely destroyed – yet.


September 8th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 9/8: A military reversal, an in-house sports network and more It’s a short week but there’s no shortage of media news. Here are this week’s quiz questions.  And here’s hoping you can join us for live SPJ Trivia at the SPJ2020 conference. I’ll be joining Quill editor Lou Harry for hands-on-buzzer fun with a wide range of questions.


September 4th, 2020
From the President: Putting SPJ Fellows at the forefront Throughout its 111 years of history, SPJ has created innumerable cherished traditions. Among them is the Fellows of the Society program, launched in 1948. In those 72 years the Society has named 214 fellows. Last year, at our annual fall convention, we honored Maria Ressa of Rappler, and retired Associated Press staffers Terry Anderson and Nick Ut, plus Jamal Khashoggi of The Washington Post posthumously.


September 1st, 2020
As theaters reopen, film reviewers face critical decisions As movie theaters start reopening in North America, the place deemed a sanctuary by audiences has become a potential hotbed for infections. Cinema chains and independents have developed new cleaning methods and plans for social distancing, but filmgoers can choose to stay home and wait for films to arrive on-demand or to appear on streaming platforms.


August 31st, 2020
Have you been paying attention? News biz quiz for 8/31/20 When Quill launched the News Biz Quiz last week (catch up here), what we didn’t tell you was that SPJ’s upcoming virtual conference will feature a live trivia competition. Thus, you can consider this a practice round. More details on the conference format coming your way soon but check out the full conference schedule here. 


August 28th, 2020
Pulling up anchors: Hiring broadcast talent in COVID-19 times The pandemic forced lots of changes to the collection and presentation of TV news. Sources, instead of pontificating to a visiting reporter, now chime in from their home offices via Zoom. And anchors, instead of literally rubbing elbows with their peers on the studio set, are just as likely to broadcast from home as well.


August 25th, 2020
News Biz Quiz for 8/25/20 Of course, you have been following the news. That’s your job. But have you been following the news about the news biz? Let’s find out. In this new, weekly feature at Quillmag.com, we’ll pose a set of questions covering both consequential stories and “they did WHAT?!”


August 13th, 2020
Future of in-flight magazines remains up in the air For decades, well-thumbed copies of inflight magazines were as much a fixture on commercial airliners as peanuts and absurdly tiny pillows. They typically nestled in seat-back pockets next to the barf bags, offering a few minutes of distraction to one of the most captive of captive audiences—fliers sealed inside a pressurized tube cruising at 40,000 feet.


August 11th, 2020
Bookshelf: Investigative journalist Jean Guerrero’s “Hatemonger: Stephen Miller, Donald Trump, and the White Nationalist Agenda” Investigative journalist Jean Guerrero has spent years covering immigration in the United States. When the Trump administration implemented a family separation policy in 2018, she found parents who had committed no crimes or threats were still being separated.  She wanted to know why.


July 23rd, 2020
Awards: Getting your best work recognized shouldn’t be an afterthought Come 2021, it’s a safe bet some of the stories, web graphics, podcasts and editorial cartoons about COVID-19 will be honored with awards. The virus has spawned a crush of good journalism, and while such awards aren’t the highest priority, they can be important to a team’s morale.


July 13th, 2020
Building a better chapter In recruiting members and leaders, staging programs and recognizing outstanding work, most SPJ chapters may look a good deal alike. But some stand out. What’s the key? “Programming,” said Patricia Gallagher Newberry, SPJ National President and the journalism program area director at Miami University in Ohio.


June 26th, 2020
With fields and arenas empty, sports writers take on hard news Normally, Ava Wallace can be found interviewing the Washington Wizards players for The Washington Post, but she recently covered a Black Lives Matter protest in Louisville when police fired tear gas and rubber bullets into the crowd.   Alex Putterman, the University of Connecticut football beat writer at the Hartford Courant, hasn’t written a sports story in months.