The Day Free News Died

John Cook · 03/26/10 03:05PM

In your counterfeit Friday media column: Rupert Murdoch launches the first volley in the new paywall wars, ABC News employees face a buyout deadline, Forbes loses a key editor, and Variety throws a hissyfit.

Political Correctness At American Newspapers

maggie · 01/27/08 11:49AM

This week, editors at the Cleveland Plain Dealer why they had banned the word "nigger" from a column. "For many readers, it's never OK to use that word, given its history." Reluctance to use the racial epithet, even in reported speech, is a pretty good indicator of political correctness. So we did a quick search of the Nexis database, and ranked major newspapers by the number of times "nigger" has appeared over the last year. There's an interesting geographical pattern. New York's competitive newspapers are relatively free with the loaded word; the New York Times more so, even, than the tabloid New York Post, though that could also be a reflection of the Gray Lady's vast daily output. The word crops up often in big-city papers, often in the context of black interviewees, using "nigger" as a term of endearment or familiarity. The most politically correct part of the country is also the whitest: Northern California and the Pacific Northwest, where The Oregonian, The San Francisco Chronicle and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer registered only one hit each.

The N-Word

Nick Denton · 01/21/08 04:51PM

The editors of Cleveland Plain Dealer believe the use of the epithet "nigger" is never appropriate, even if it's essential to a story. "Particularly for people who are older, it takes them back to a place they don't want to think about," says the paper's managing editor. If the Ohio newspaper wants to take political correctness to an extreme, fine. For consistency's sake, however, the PC police might want to do a purge of the Plain Dealer's archives, where there are several instances of the n-word making it through intact onto the page. [Romenesko]