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July 28, 2004

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Briefs Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Not The Only Game in Town

The battle of political ideologies isn't the only game at the Democratic National Convention. Among the thousands of news media types here is a correspondent for World Wrestling Entertainment and a crew from ESPN2's Cold Pizza. "Our fans are the ones the media aren't reaching," says Chris Nowinski, a former professional wrestling star and Harvard graduate. WWE offers segments of convention coverage on such shows as Monday Night Raw, along with Nowinski's daily Web column at ESPN2's weekday morning show features political analysis from Lisa Caputo, Hillary Clinton's former press secretary, and interviews with Kerry supporters from the Boston Bruins and one of Kerry's windsurfing pals. Other segments cover political vs. sports trash talk and the transformation of sports arenas into political arenas. Cold Pizza also traveled to North Carolina to talk to John Edwards' high school football coaches and teammates. "We are really turning over rocks to find stories that people don't know about," says Executive Producer Brian Donlon.

Carl Brooks and Janna Goldstein

Local Cable Channel Beats the Big Guys

The New England Cable News channel is crowing about its Democratic Convention coverage. Overnight Nielson ratings that show that NECN, combined with its PBS partner WGBH, led the cable news audience in the Boston television market in the 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. slot. Each percentage point in the rating is equal to 23,918 viewers. CNN was second with 1.9 percent, Fox followed with 1.4 percent and MSNBC was fourth at 0.8 percent. The NECN is providing 16 hours of live convention coverage daily. It teams with WGBH from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Seth Effron

On the Web

Professional journalists are grateful for, if sometimes stung by, The Campaign Desk (, which features “critique and analysis of 2004 campaign coverage,” according to the Web site. The Columbia Journalism Review, published by Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism, launched the site in January to monitor the media. Campaign Desk gives the bimonthly publication a way to “get inside the news cycle and enrich campaign journalism in real time,” the site explains. The Web site offers a rich array of regularly updated and archived articles in such departments as Blog Report, Spin Buster and Fact Check. Monday’s Spin Buster challenges a New York Times assertion that Boston Democrats are “brimming with anger” at the Bush administration by deconstructing the article and finding “no angry Democrats in sight.”

Mark Schlesinger

Briefs Tuesday, July 27, 2004
Oops!, Bias Watch, On the Web, Correction

Briefs Monday, July 26, 2004
New Toy for Political Junkies, On the Web, Bias Watch, Where do the journalists get THEIR news?




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