Media

Another Ghost-Written Op/ed Traced to LMG

If there's a questionable opinion column promoting a corporate viewpoint, chances are the secretive Washington DC public affairs firm LMG -- also known as LawMedia Group -- is involved. As the Center for Media and Democracy reported previously, LMG helped place a column attributed to the president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, which he didn't write and which criticized some SCLC donors.

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Ethical News Director Receives Award

As CMD previously reported, Eau Claire, Wisconsin news director Glen Mabie quit his job in January. Instead of going along with a deal that his station had struck with a local hospital to guarantee coverage of medical issues featuring personnel from that hospital and not others, Mabie left his position. The station later cancelled the agreement. Mabie is now being recognized for his stance.

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Polls, Damn Polls and Offshore Drilling

With polls showing increased public support for more U.S. offshore oil drilling, John Wihbey cautions, "the framing" of poll questions "is paramount and the media's interpretation crucial." For example, when asked, "Do you prefer more drilling or more investment in alternative energy?," most people choose the latter.

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Whose Line Is It, Anyway?

It's an "open secret of lobbying," writes Jeffrey Birnbaum. "Public relations firms regularly solicit authors of opinion-page articles, draft the pieces for them and place the articles in publications where they will have the most impact -- all for a fee." Recently, an op-ed criticizing a bill that would reduce credit card fees appeared in Southern newspapers, attributed to Charles Steele Jr., the president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC).

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Taking out the Trash

On parliament's last day before its summer break, the British government publicly released thirty ministerial statements, including one listing the salaries of "special advisers," one detailing the siting criteria for new nuclear power stations and another detailing the guests entertained

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Time for a Federal Shield Law for Journalists

The New York Times editorial board supports a proposed federal shield law for journalists that is currently in the Senate. The bill, which would provide journalists with protections against having to reveal sources in federal court, also makes allowances for genuine needs on the part of law enforcement and security concerns. Despite those exceptions, the bill faces "near hysterical opposition from the Bush administration. ...

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